John & Anne Wiley

2015/04/13

Mountains & Memories

Flying home from Phoenix our hearts were overflowing with memories of good times with great people gathered for the wedding. Taking off from Deer Valley (KDVT) we detoured a few miles out for a turn past downtown and a look at this cool red rock formation we admired from KPHX while waiting for an airliner there years ago.

4212 Big Butte

4212 Big Butte

It’s a pretty cool feature in the city, with trails and an open air amphitheater. On our long flight across the desert we were startled to see traces of snow atop San Jacinto Peak above KPSP (Palm Springs).

4375 San Jacinto Snow

4375 San Jacinto Snow

Soon another flood of memories. This time of an event that seems to loom large in my love of flying. A memory from infancy of watching in awe as my Dad took his first solo flight from Flabob Airport (KRIR).

4448 Flabob Tower

4448 Flabob Tower

Looking out across the compass star and runway toward Mt. Rubidoux distant memories of the region flooded back.

4450 Mt. Rubidoux

4450 Mt. Rubidoux

Before long Tripp had transported us home to the moist blue and green roots of our Santa Barbara memories.

4485 Ellings Park

4485 Ellings Park

Maybe a big gift of the many adventurous miles Tripp has taken us, is the ever deeper appreciation we have of our adopted Home.

2015/03/29

Eagle Luck

We flew some Young Eagles on three short flights from co-sponsor Above All Aviation through Lynn Houstons program named A Different Point of View, and during the flight I spotted a whale near the beach. I told the Eagles they were our lucky charms, because we rarely see whales and almost never near shore. After the last of our three flights we went back to look for the whale and happily found two. My fav pic of the encounter is this Pointillist impression with prismatic colors from the particular sun angle in the gently rippling water.

3014 Pointillist Prism

3014 Pointillist Prism

It glided slowly along just beneath the water like this, then finally came up for air.

3025 Whale Breath

3025 Whale Breath

Moments later it left a swirling circle of calm on the surface as it silently vanished into the depths. Mist from the breath of this blow hung briefly in the air, reminding me of the day I swam next to a Humpback as it sounded off Maui. The musky smell of that breath drifted down in a magical mist around me into the wordless memory of a lifetime.

2015/02/25

Beyond Time

Flying takes us beyond time, seems to me. For most people that means jet lag. But it means “prop advance” for the few who enjoy our great good luck in flying low and slow over the paradise that is Santa Barbara region. I’ve waxed poetic here in the past about prop advance, which is what I call the sensation of gaining a day every time we fly low and slow. I’ve also offered my theory as to the cause: flying this way is “dream time,” so our bodies imagine that we’ve just had a restful and transformative night’s sleep. I dearly wish it were possible to share some hint of all this in a photo, but this will have to do.

1230 IV, UCSB and Beyond

1230 IV, UCSB and Beyond

Variations of this general view greet us at the beginning of every flight out of SBA, and such magnificent beauty is almost a shock to the system. We always smile, and even the best of moods before liftoff is instantly transported into a realm of bliss beyond time.

Over coming days I hope to share some pix of recent flights, family fun, and maybe some of our other delightful distractions from our enjoyment of sharing here. :)

2015/02/01

Mission

Pilots sometimes talk about a mission, meaning the purpose of a flight. Another meaning of the word is a larger, even Life mission. Californians are also familiar with the word used in reference to our string of old church buildings such as the Santa Barbara Mission. This pic covers all three of these meanings.

0464 Mission

0464 Mission

Our mission in life includes enjoying beauty and sharing it with others (like posting this pic); the mission of this flight was very much about sharing beauty (and bliss); and toward the lower-right is the SB Mission. While we also appreciate aviation for getting us quickly and affordably from place to place, sharing the breathtaking beauty of it is what we most enjoy.

2015/01/14

New Views

We got some new views of San Diego last weekend, thanks to help from a local pilot there. We’ve ridden the Giant Dipper roller coaster and wandered the other attractions at Belmont Park on Mission Beach, but this is the first time we’ve seen it all from this perspective!

9969 Giant Dipper, Belmont Park

9969 Giant Dipper, Belmont Park

We also got this new view of the U.S.S. Midway aviation museum on the San Diego waterfront.

0004 USS Midway, San Diego

0004 USS Midway, San Diego

We also passed close enough to Seaport Village to smell the gourmet cooking, and look beyond at Balboa Park and back along the waterfront. We have pix of many more familiar places we’ve explored during visits to this sparkling city, but these are my favs from this flight.

0015 Seaport Village & Waterfront

0015 Seaport Village & Waterfront

We can barely wait to fly this new route again on a clear day! :)

I’m looking into adding this route into the options on the cool free open source Android Avare aviation app, for the benefit of other pilots.

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