© Copyright World Flight 2002







Day One - April 30th Wick, Scotland
3 hrs 7 mins

Greetings from WF2003, it has begun (finally!) Due to rather harsh looking weather we had to decide to make an early departure from the green isle. We departed Shannon a day early and after a brief stop at Kilrush airfield in Kildare, where we had some light maintenance we proceeded onwards to Wick in Scotland. Altough not part of our original routing we had to collect some equipment and it made more sense to fly to Wick and collect it ourselves.

The deaprture from Kilrush was via Dublin- Turnberry- Aberdeen to Wick. The weather on route was pleasant to begin with and we had some great views of the Mourne mountains as we flew following day. About 3 minutes into our decent we made contact East of Belfast. The good weather didn't stay with us as we ventured north. Descent from flight level 070 (7000 feet) to FL 050 was required to prevent ice building up on the wings and propellor. Further decent was not available due to high terrain below and we had to accept some ice on the wings for the remainder of the flight.

Scottish ATC then informed us that Wick was closed for the evening and that they were unable to contact anyone by landline to have someone meet us on arrival. We had been in touch with ground handling before we left Ireland but we were unable to contact them in the air. As we were routing via Aberdeen we decided to start an approach to land at Aberdeen. At the last moment we made contact with Andrew Bruce at Wick Airport and continued to Wick climbing back to 5000 feet. Cloud masked our view most of the way. We didn't become visual with the surface until 10 miles out. We carried out a VOR/DME approach to runway 31 (6,000 ft runway) and had the airport to ourselves on arrival with everyone gone home for the day. An interesting airport left over from World War II.

PH-SMD is now in a hanger at Far North East Aviation. A special word of thanks to: Aiden and Kevin (Irish parachute Club- Clonnbullogue) for a free fill of fuel and Dave, Tony, Larry and Tom (SAMS) at Kilrush for helping us out yesterday. Larry the decals are still there! Spending the day here in Wick (chilly and cloudy), tomorrow it is off to Bordeaux.

Bye for now, Paul and Alan.