During my first few Oshkosh fly-ins, I would always try to see everything, which resulted in walking untold numbers of miles every day due to the huge site, with aching feet and legs by the end of Day Three. Now I try to prioritize things a bit, and only focus on the highlights. I also attempt to make better use of the tram service, and to plan the week so I only have visit the most distant areas once.
Sunrise in Homebuilt Camping
I see Mark Richardson more often than once a year, as he lives in the Ottawa area. But, we did enjoy the output of his propane fuelled espresso maker.
On Monday, Terry and I went though the “sea of RVs” (i.e. the huge parking area filled with various models of the Vans Aircraft designs). We also went through one large section of the outside aircraft exhibitors. It was very hot and muggy, so we rewarded ourselves with a much enjoyed ice cream mid afternoon.
Tuesday AM, we went through the Vintage Aircraft Parking area and had our annual RV–8 builders/flyers/wannabees meeting. We’ve been doing these for over 15 years now, and it is always good to talk to the other builders.
Wednesday morning was warbirds, followed by a couple of interesting forum presentations. The highlight was an interview with Col. Richard Cole, the last surviving member of the Doolittle Raid. The flight of the 16 B–25 bombers off the Hornet aircraft carrier to attack Tokyo in April 1942 was a great boost to the American moral, in the early days of the US part of WWII. Col. Cole is 100 years old, and while he appears quite frail, is obviously still very sharp, with excellent memory of his role as Jimmy Doolittle’s copilot for the raid.
Terry bailed out on a bus Thursday AM, to get off site to be picked up by two of her sisters. She spent the rest of the week in Manitowoc with them. My brother and his son arrived Thursday morning, and we spent the afternoon walking over much of the site. My legs had enough by 17:00, so I left them and rested for the evening.
Friday AM, my brother, his son and I took a bus to the Airventure Seaplane Base. This is a very peaceful place, hidden in the trees around a lagoon on Lake Winnebago, SW of the airport. Friday afternoon, we parked ourselves on the flight line to watch the airshow. The highlight was the Snowbirds, but most of the other acts were excellent as well.
Saturday AM, I packed up and joined the long congo line of aircraft taxing for departure. I did the short flight to Manitowoc to meet up with Terry again. We spent Sunday there, and flew home on Monday.
On the way home, we deviated from our usual stop of Sault Ste. Marie, MI. This time, I did some research on fuel prices, and was surprised to learn that the fuel in Gore Bay was cheaper than the fuel in Sault Ste. Marie, MI. And, the route through Gore Bay was 18 nm shorter than the route through Sault Ste. Marie. So, we cleared Customs in Gore Bay. The Customs lady was extremely friendly, as was the FBO gal. CYZE will likely be our usual stop on the way back from WI.