Vanessa Jump Nelson: 9 Random things I love about my taildragger

It’s time we got back to the ladies and let them tell us what random things they love above their taildraggers! Meet Vanessa Jump Nelson who flies a 1946 Piper J3-C named “Tumbleweed”!

#1 I can go into little grass strips and get grass decoratively & harmlessly stuck in the tailwheel – a sure sign I’ve been having too much fun.

Tailwheel fun

#2 I can fly with the door open! Whee!

(This was on my way to Osh)

#3 Tumbleweed’s name is written on the cowling on both sides, giving my Cub added personality.

(Alexis Peltier took this photo)

#4 My taildragger shows up in the family photo album going back 40-plus years.

#5 The simplicity of the instrument panel – round analog instruments, and very few of them.

#6 Low tech fuel gauges: The nose tank gas gauge is a red lid atop a bobbing cork with a metal rod that sticks up through it, the wing tank is a glass tube with a little red ball bobbing in the fuel.

#7 I fly solo from the back seat, so my husband, or a friend, will fit nicely in the front seat without a lot of adjustment.

 Friend Alexis from Kenya

#8 My magneto key is attached to a yellow beaded bracelet made by the Masai people, a gift specifically given to Tumbleweed by my fly-buddies Alexis Peltier & Michel Laplace-Toulouse, who recently returned to their homes in Kenya, Africa but plan to be back next year to fly a Supercub from Oregon to Kenya.

Masai bracelet/Keyring from Kenyan fly buddies Alexis Peltier & MIchel LaPlace-Toulouse

#9 It got me from Oregon to Oshkosh and back safely. Ya gotta love that! :0)


On the way to Osh & 6,600 MSL

My husband and I flying together!

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2 Comments
  • Jacque Swan
    Posted at 10:07h, 27 August Reply

    Great photos of you and “Tumbleweed,” Vanessa. I’m so glad you made it to Oshkosh this year.

  • Linda Melhoff
    Posted at 20:02h, 26 August Reply

    A great post, Vanessa. You say it SO well. Those of us from the NW who have the privilege to know you are very proud. Your trip from Oregon to Oshkosh was quite an accomplishment.

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