Plane & Pilot
Tuesday, June 19, 2012

East Coast By LSA


Twenty-five hours in a Remos GX


The sun was setting as we were heading into the Carolinas. Cruising at about 6,500 feet and clear skies, we were able to watch, second by second, the sun slowly descending over the horizon. What a magnificent sight it was.

As darkness started to set in, we turned on all the lights the Remos had to offer. Thankfully, the plane was night certified. But, we noticed a strand of thunderstorms over the Appalachian Mountains moving eastward, and even though they were a few hours away, we figured we'd spend the night at our next fuel stop. That came to be Myrtle Beach, S.C. After six hours of flying, we were due for some shut-eye.

Day Two
Waking up, I looked out the window, and my heart sank. I laid my eyes upon the dreary skyline of low clouds and rain. While eating our continental breakfast at the hotel, we whipped out our iPads and iPhones and brought up every piece of weather information our iDevices could muster.

Even though the airport was still IFR, we headed out to Myrtle Beach International. Miraculously, by the time we got there, the weather was clearing up, and the clouds were to burning off.

Escaping Myrtle Beach's gloomy weather, we were off once again. Fighting with our groundspeed, we were full throttle, going about 90 knots now. Cruising over the Atlantic coast, we broke out our Gleim workbooks, and Dave started to quiz me on the flight-instructor aeronautical questions. After an hour of quizzing, we slowly drifted off into a quiet calmness with the soothing hymn from the engine. Realizing we had a 67-knot groundspeed, I figured it would be prudent to try a lower altitude. So, we brought the aircraft down to about 1,000 feet over the shores of the Carolinas. It felt like I was at home again, flying over the beaches of the Hamptons.

Making a trade-off of speed for comfort, flying at this altitude increased our speed to about 95 knots, but at a discomforting price: turbulence. But, I could tolerate a few bumps, knowing that we were going 30 knots faster. Coming up to Jacksonville, Fla., we passed two submarines sailing by with an armada of naval vessels escorting them, one of our many intriguing views along the flight. Approaching our fuel limit, we set her down in St. Augustine, Fla., for another fuel pit stop.

After settling the bill with the FBO, we were off once again. This time it didn't feel right; I knew something was missing. I knew I left something behind…my Oakley sunglasses. How could I be flying in the sunshine state without sunglasses? But, the Remos has sunshades that I used thoroughly throughout the rest of the flight.

We were then on our way to Miami, where I planned to go to the infamous neon lights of South Beach. Making our way down the coast, we cruised at about 8,500 feet, dodging the puffy-cotton cumulus clouds all the way to Miami.



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