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Oshkosh 2013, Recap

Overall… our trip to Oshkosh & Airventure 2013 went very well.  The weather could NOT HAVE BEEN BETTER!  Morning temps in the 50’s and mid afternoon highs in the 70’s made it really easy to sleep in the tent.  We had very little rain and only one big gust of wind…  No tents were harmed in the making of this adventure!

Attendance… seemed on par with last year and was confirmed this week by EAA.  Over 10,000 planes made it to Oshkosh for the week.  RV’s were well represented in homebuilt camping as you can see by the panoramic photo below… this was taken from the wing of our RV9A (click for larger view).

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Show Changes and Cool Stuff… I think were, for the most part, good.  I liked the new airshow format, the $2 water everywhere, the new food vendors with a much larger variety and TWO night airshows.  The biggest thing missing this year was ALL military aircraft.  We had no C-17’s or A-10’s on static display or the usual daily flybys from F-18 Hornets or F-22 Raptors.  Thank goodness there is one person alive that can afford to privately own and operate a Harrier Jump Jet so that we can get our fill of noise on the flightline every afternoon!

Flying Car and a Jet Man…  One of the neatest things we saw was the Terrafugia Transition (flying car) do its thing in public for the first time.  It rolled out on its own power, unfolded the wings and took off to do a nice aerial display… then it landed, folded up its wings and drove off… pretty cool!  The “Jet Man”, Yves Rossy, was interesting enough, but watching something 6,000 feet over your head that didn’t even make much noise left a lot to be desired.  One of the “sleeper” displays of the week was the SubSonex single person V-tailed jet by Sonex Aircraft.  I’m not sure how you would insure it, but with a $10,000 deposit you could reserve a production slot on this $125,000+ single seater to be delivered next year.

Shower House RANT… It wouldn’t be the EAA if we didn’t have something to complain about now would it?  When you go to take a shower at home you expect to leave the bathroom cleaner than when you came in… not necessarily so if you shower at homebuilt camping.  Try putting on fresh clothes with water ankle deep in dirty bath water… wet cloths & shoes, ain’t no fun!    I know it costs money, but HBC could really benefit from a permanent structure like they now have on the North 40 with flush toilets and private bath stalls.  I know we didn’t spend as much money on our homebuilt planes as the Bonanza Bums & Station Airheads that camp the North 40, but we are part of the reason over a half a million people show up every July. (OK, lots of my friends drive Bonanza’s and 206’s… just laugh, OK)

20130728_112144IA, New State… On the trip up to Oshkosh, we made a fuel stop in Dubuque, IA (KDBQ) and parked next to a familiar P-51 Mustang and our friend from home, Dan Fordice.  Dan offered us lunch with the T-6 group that had been training there all week as he fired up “Charlotte’s Chariot” to beat the weather into KOSH.  After a quick bite and some fuel we managed to get out in front of the long line of T-6’s as they formed up and headed north.  After looking at my log when we returned, I realized that Iowa was a new state for our “land in all states adventure” – number 17 – a long way from all 49, but we are getting there!

Next Year?… you bet, we plan to be there.  Where else can you spend a week in a tent with 10’s of thousands of propheads like ourselves that traveled across this beautiful country of ours to the aviation Mecca, OSHKOSH!

And as always… You can subscribe to our blog by entering your  e-mail address in the “Follow” box to the right or “LIKE” our Face book page at https://www.facebook.com/2FlyAmerica.

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Oshkosh Day Three, Corn Roast!

The weather couldn’t be any better here this week, highs in the mid 70s and no real rain yet. We have walked  a lot and still only covered a portion of the show. The pedometer on my phone has me at over 20,000 steps Per Day since we have been here. We partied with the warbird group last night at SwampFest, thanks to Dan Fordice and crew and just finished some great roasted corn at homebuilt camping (only in Wisconsin).  At 8:00 tonight is the mid week night airshow… Probably the best event here!
Half way through Airventure and all things are well in Oshkosh!

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Oshkosh Day One – Best Porta-Potti Day!

Waked up to reveille
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from the nearby warbird  camping at 0630.  Temperatures are in the mid 50s and the Porta-Pottis are in the best shape they will be all week! With the smell of coffee in the air at the homebuilt camping area, we stopped for a cup and headed to see the powered parachutes at the ultralight area before the winds pick up. The P51s are cranked and the Aeroshell T-6s are in the air, let the show begin!

Planning for Airventure – Oshkosh, Here We Come!

Every Year, About This Time… Aviation enthusiasts around the world start planning a trip to Oshkosh Wisconsin and Airventure — we are no different.   The stats are incredible, 10,000 plus airplanes, 30, 000 plus camping and over a half million folks will visit the hallowed grounds of KOSH, making it the busiest airport in the world for a week.  We pulled our 5th wheel camper to Oshkosh for 5 years before we were able to fly-in last year, in our freshly home-built RV-9A.  Trust me, if you like airplanes and have not been to Airventure, you need to put this on your “bucket list”.  It is truly impossible to take it all in, in three or four days!

Side Trip…  This year, we are planning a side trip to Rapid City, SD (KRAP) to tent camp in the Black Hills and visit Mt. Rushmore for a few days.  We intend to visit Wyoming, North Dakota and Minnesota, if the weather allows, and roll into Oshkosh near the middle of the week.  We may even try to fly fish while we are there, just to see what they do differently.  We will be in a tent for probably 9 of the 10 nights on the road (thank GOD for a wonderful wife!) and will wash clothes the night we spend in the hotel.  I am currently researching campgrounds in the Black Hills around Mt. Rushmore, so if anyone has any ideas about places to stay, please, let me know.

Last Year’s Video…  While were planning this year’s trip, I ran across a video I made from the approach to KOSH last year.  It was a fun ride; we had made it to an airport about an hour south before we hit bad weather.  After waiting it out all day, we found a nice opening that allowed us to make it in before dark on Sunday.  It was very busy, with planes coming in from every direction, but we made it in safely and saw a friend of ours from Mississippi before we even got out of the plane – Only at OSHKOSH! So, check out the video below and as always, you can subscribe to our blog by entering your  e-mail address in the box to the right or “LIKE” our Face book page at https://www.facebook.com/2FlyAmerica.

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