Last updated 2022-05-10
Met the photo crew and briefed before getting airborne for the shoot in slightly lumpy air. As the focus of all the hoo-hah, WP833 was lead Chipmunk for the entire shoot – I think Steve was OK with that!
Mark Loper (photographer) was a bit miffed that, shooting out of the Bonanza’s starboard side he’d only get 833’s port tail markings (the original 1997 Red Arrows scheme), not the later scheme on the starboard side, which he preferred. 45 minutes of focusing on holding position as Mark directed us ‘up 5’, ‘back 10’, … Not much chance to appreciate the blue of the lake and the green of pastures selected as backdrop, but a first review after the debrief had a happy camera chappie and some good-looking shots. Those following shots attributed to Susanne Flom, were taken on her iPhone!
Following the air-air shoot ‘Photo1’ hastened back to Lincoln in time for Mark to disembark just off the runway and get shots of WP833 (starboard side) and WG430 as they made in-trail passes.
After all that palava, we were getting hungry, so off for some pizza. After lunch Steve and I departed with the intention of making progress northwards, but a problem emerged with WP833 which did not allow the throttle to be retarded below 1,750 rpm and it seemed more sensible to RTB before the problem became more serious or we landed somewhere without available services. Steve did a great job checking on my readiness for a dead-stick landing and advising other traffic of my operational difficulty. ‘Blipping’ with Mag#2 (Mag#1 off), I landed long and managed to roll onto a taxiway and almost clear the hold bars. Investigation revealed obstruction caused by baggage which had moved. Though I’d checked the brake, stick (which was removed in the aft cockpit) and flaps for freedom of movement, I’d not considered the need to check the throttle. One more for the check list.
At this point, with only a single leg seeming practical before we need to find a night stop, we abandoned all hope for the day and hopped the hills to Auburn, cos’ we knew of a decent night stop with which we’d already become acquainted. Susanne was GIB* for the short trip, which included a photo-recce of the Flom residence.
* ‘Gal In Back’
Stats: 2.0 hrs logged and 1.5 hrs flown (including the photo sortie and the RTB leg), 31 nm track (ignoring photo sortie and RTB leg).