Friday, October 10, 2008

Colorado Trip

Joe and I left at dawn out of Melbourne, to deliver N22UA to Jamie Jacobson in Crawford, Colorado. Joe flew our demo plane, and I flew Jamie's. We started with a great tailwind caused by Hurricane Ike, and surfed it all the way to Kansas. Our first stop was Drake, Arkansas after 850nm in 6.7hrs.

We then hit some dirty weather which kept us from making Denver in one day, and ended up in Ulysses, KS. We met some great folks, and flew with them the next morning before pushing on to Boulder. Several pilots were able to sample some nice soaring along the foothills, and Joe flew with record holder Larry Tudor along the spine of the Rockies.

Next stop was Salida, where we stayed with JZ and Amy. The next day was fabulous, with a cloudstreet running south along the Sangre de Cristos to the Great Sand Dunes park.

Jeff Shingleton and Don Boardman met us in Crawford after a trip in Jeff's plane from New York. The 3 Lambadas soared up a mountainside together, then made a formation pass over the Crawford airport.

New owner Jamie soared his new plane to 15,000msl, flew to Montrose on a glide, then motored to Grand Junction, Grand Mesa, and home to Paonia.

We circled Joe Cocker's English estate buried in the mountains of Colorado.

After Crawford, it was on to Telluride to visit some good friends and sample more excellent soaring conditions.

Local ace Jeff Campbell flew circles around the virga with strong cloudsuck on the edges of the clouds.

Jeff didn't like the looks of the rain and snow, but the Garmin showed acceptable conditions back over the Telluride airport.
Our Lambadas were comfy under the wing of a Gulfstream, just like ducklings against their mom.

Independence Pass, leading to Aspen.

We landed at Leadville, 9,800msl with a density altitude of 11,800msl.

The 3 of us also visited Eagle, Steamboat, Durango, and all of the mountains in between. We didn't go around the mountains, we went straight over them in our U2 Lambadas. Climb rates using the engine were 500fpm at 17,000'msl. The Lambada is built for Colorado!

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