Tuesday, 29 March 2011
March 23rd Kanandah to Pt Pirie
Departed Kanandah at 6.56 am after a eggs, sausage & toast breakfast into the crisp Nullabor morning air and once again Maca took over and flew non stop (haha) to Forrest. Maca commented on how little there was to see over the horizon as far as he could see and at 500 ft agl there was lots (of nothing) to see. We landed at Forrest at 8.42 with a slight down wind on rwy 18. The lovely refueling agent and caretakers Lenny and Mary were there to welcome us having heard on the grapevine (airway gossip) that we were coming. After refueling – took on 140 litres and 2 litres of oil – we departed at 10.02 heading for Ceduna. We arrived at 12.52 pm after a leg of 2 hrs 50 minutes still with a headwind.
At 1.50pm as we were taxiing out to depart Ceduna a RPT (regular public transport for those non-air readers) came in. We had to move off the runway and hold on the side to allow her to pass us. As the RPT passed by the Captain quoted “Nice aeroplane. Bet she’s not still under warranty”! We got underway and set our heading for Pt Pirie with a headwind we were only getting 90k groundspeed. The weather started closing in with low cloud over the hills and showers west of Cowell. So the decision was made to divert to Port Pirie. Inbound over the bight at 146k groundspeed we were soon on the ground at 3.53 pm with no chance of getting to Gawler before last light. Luckily for us Steve Joyce the Pirie airport manager offered accommodation and a meal at his home. The beautiful chicken baked in pastry and vegetables would make any chef proud and his hospitality was superb. He is to be credited for his public relations to the general aviation as he is known for his hospitality to many traveling pilots.