Day 18: The Quest Continues

We’re on the move in our RV7, continuing to see the countryside from our vantage point high above. We’re overflying and visiting locations on-or-near the perimeter boundaries of America. Today we flew from Del Rio KDRT to Terlingua 3TE8, Texas.

We departed Del Rio in +100 degree temps, purposefully climbing shallow to keep the oil temperature and cylinder head temperatures down. I mention it because the day before we saw our oil temperature shoot to over 220 degrees (in the high yellow) climbing out of Laredo – OAT was 104 degrees. Every 5 seconds the female voice of the EIS (engine information system) loudly demanded “Check oil temperature”, “Check oil temperature”, “Check oil temperature” and there was no shutting her up. Eventually she did quiet down after we lowered the nose, increasing the airspeed in the climb. What we learned yesterday kept “bitching Betty” quiet today – what a difference a change of technique in extreme heat makes.

My WingX snippet of the day, texted to our son so someone would know our travel plan. (An idea of where to look for us if we don’t show up in Terlingua)

Approaching Terlingua, Big Bend National Park to the East.

The terrain in southwest Texas is roughed and dry. If you don’t like dust & dirt, don’t come to Terlingua!

Left base for runway 3TE8, C Fulcher Ranch Airport. Runway 13/31, 3600′ x 120′, gravel. “Not recommended for tricycle gear aircraft with low prop clearance due to loose gravel on runway. Recommended landing N and taking off S due to large hill at north end of runway.” I’ll second that.

We’re sharing take offs & landings on our trip and this one was all Boyd’s. He nailed the landing, a beautiful thing to behold! Density altitude at the time was just over 6000′.

We popped the top soon after touching down hoping for relief from the ridiculous heat. Dream on – there was no relief!

We were invited by Alex and Marti Whitmore to stop in and stay-over during our US perimeter flight – so we did! We were able to tie down in their open hangar and stay in their casita. (Casita: noun, especially in the southwest, a small house or other building).

At the “Casa de Aero” and enjoying every minute of it. It’s a refurbished Airstream, beautifully decorated, air-conditioned and a fun way to “camp out”. 🙂

WooHoo, it even has an outdoor shower with a view!!

Awe, it’s so cute. 🙂

The view from casita Casa de Aero.

Alex and Marti Whitmore are long time pilots who own and fly several taildraggers; a C180, Luscombe, RV9, Piper PA11, and a Pietenpol Aircamper. They rent this casita to traveling pilots and provide a courtesy car too. Here’s the link with pictures and video.  The casita has one full size bed and a nice futon that makes into a bed. They are also restoring a 1949 Shasta that should be online this summer.

Many thanks to Alex & Marti for their friendship and hospitality.

“Until you spread your wings you have no idea how far you’ll fly.”

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