Around the World in 70 Days, Week 2: On To Paris
Last week, we left our intrepid band of GA pilots in Nuuk, the capital of Greenland, where they all had landed safely in VFR conditions, after a few changes of flight plans to accommodate the weather. The group spent the night there and by 5:30 the next morning they were up checking the weather in hopes of launching for Reykjavik, Iceland.
With a forecast indicating broken clouds at 1,500 feet and a ceiling at 4,000, all agreed it was a go. Bright orange immersion suits and life jackets were donned for the flight. The pilots enjoyed brilliant visibility and deep blue skies as they flew above the gleaming ice cap. The fine weather continued for the 400 miles across the North Atlantic to Reykjavik.
After a day off to explore Iceland, the group prepared for the next leg, to the fjords of Norway -- but an air traffic control strike had closed down the airports. A quick detour took them to Scotland instead, where ground time was spent touring Loch Ness, visiting a castle, and sampling the local malt whiskey. They were all up early for the flight to Paris, just about two hours away. With friends and spouses joining the pilots there, the group of 11 grew to 17.
AOPA's Tom Horne arrived in Paris aboard Tracy Forrest's Cessna Mustang. "We made it to FL410 in 27 minutes. Not bad at all," he wrote in his blog. "This is how one becomes spoiled." While the pilots and friends explored the city and enjoyed a dinner at the top of the Eiffel Tower, Horne prepared to return home. "So it's no more North Atlantic blogging for me," he writes. "I hope you enjoyed it as much as I did....This Air Journey trip is first-class all the way. (It should be, at some $55,000 per head)."
Next week: The gang flies to Morocco and Malta.