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Flight to Ocean City MD

ocean_city_mdOcean City MD
One of the most common questions I am asked as a pilot is “what is the furthest place you have flown to?” If you are a pilot you know what I mean and after being a pilot for 9 years you would think I would have some really cool answer but actually I didn’t. During the years I had made a few flights to locations such as Nashua NH, Manassas VA, and Providence RI with other pilots but since they did the flight planning and most of the flying I considered myself more of a passenger than a crew member.

Fast forward to November of 2009 with a fresh IFR rating in hand and a really nice Cessna 172sp it was time to plan a trip. As the days counted down to my planned flight I kept my eye on the weather all the while still considering my options for places to visit. Finally I decided to check out Ocean City MD KOXB since I thought it might be a good place to fly my family during the summer months. The weather forecast was VFR with moderate winds at the surface and some strong winds from the south at altitude making for a relatively warm day in the northeast but a bit of a headwind on our way down. Since I was looking to shoot a logable approach and some simulated instrument time I asked one of my flying club members to join me as a safety pilot. He not only agreed to come along but he also offered to fly the return leg thereby sharing the cost of the flight. This is one of my favorite things about being in a flying club. On the morning of the flight I filed the TEC route to OXB and let my IFR rated “co-pilot” know that he would be responsible for the return leg.

After receiving my clearance (Morristown 5 departure DIXIE> V1> SBY> Direct) we were cleared for takeoff runway 23 at Morristown KMMU. Once airborne I put the Jepp Shades on and flew the departure procedure. Then came the hand off to New York and soon after I was given the anticipated instruction to fly direct to Colts Neck VOR (noted on the DP). At first I felt a bit rusty tracking the radial (over adjusting my heading a bit) but I quickly got my comfort level back. Just north of ACY I decided to let the autopilot fly a bit so I could take a good look at the view from 6000 feet (this is the start of the video footage). Soon after, I put the Jepp Shades back on and briefed the VOR A approach at Ocean City MD.

n159sp at Ocean city md

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Our visit to Ocean City MD
As I normally do when flying to new locations I took the time to call the local FBO to get the lay of the land. I explained that I was looking to stop in for a few hours and wanted to checkout the boardwalk. The lady at the FBO asked me if I would like a rental car. Seeing dollar signs in my head I declined, but she insisted. After a brief hold she asked if I would be interested in a car for $20.00. I agreed and gave her my name. Once we arrived we let the FBO know we would like to top off the tanks and they directed me to the black Mercedes Benz waiting outside. Not bad for $20.00. They also suggested that we check out a local restaurant “Seacrets”. We made the short drive to the boardwalk and after walking around a bit we headed to the restaurant. Seacrets is on the north end of the island on the bay side. Since this was during the off season entries were half price. I had the tuna stake and it was awesome defiantly worth visiting again. After dinner we headed back to the airport.

Flying home:
On our way back Nelson filed his flight plan to Morristown. After preflight we called for our clearance but were informed that our routing was still processing. We were given a release and an instruction to fly direct to Salisbury “SBY” VOR and to contact departure for the rest of the clearance. We departed OXB contacted departure and were soon given our routing to KMMU (SBY> ENO> BESSI> MAZIE> SBJ> Direct.) The flight back home was quite a bit faster now flying with a tailwind and with the comforting sound of the Lycoming IO-360-L2A doing its job it was quite enjoyable. While inbound to SBJ we were handed to the final controller and after completing a VOR check we requested the ILS 23 into Morristown. We were vectored north of the airport to setup for the ILS and enjoyed our tailwind until we turned inbound on the ILS. Nelson flew a great ILS approach to MMU and ended the flight with a good landing. Overall it was a great flight and a good experience for both of us. Until next time, happy safe flying everyone! Comments appreciated.

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Amanda Michelle (Younkin) Franklin 3/14/1986 – 5/27/2011 Click for information on Amanda