In mid 2011, we did a “long” cross country to Alaska and back via our Aerostar. This time, the trip is shorter, but with significant over water flying. My wife Trudy and I are headed to the Dominican Republic starting on April 10 and returning to Ithaca 10 days later.
This time, we are doing an escorted trip with Caribbean Flying Adventures. http://www.caribbeanflyingadventures.com/. Jim Parker has run this website and company for many years. It’s a great source of flying information, fuel prices, and how best to deal with various bureaucracies throughout the Caribbean. He also puts together escorted tours. So, we’re giving it a try.
The trip from Ft Lauderdale Executive Airport (KFXE) to Santiago, DR (MDST) is about670nm, a little under five hours in a Mooney, but only 3 hours in our Aerostar. The direct route skirts the southern Bahamas. For us, we can easily do this trip non-stop. Jim helps with the paperwork, makes the hotel reservations, and is our guide. Unlike our Alaska trip, each plane flies on its own — no group flying. In the airplane, we pack a couple of life preservers (required) and a four-man raft — thank you Mike Hall. For us, bathing suits, shorts, casual clothes, and suntan lotion! As for the others going on the trip, we’ll meet them on Monday at KFXE.
First we need to get to Floriday. We head out Friday morning from KITH to KFXE. Right now, it looks like we’llh ave IFRconditions in the morning from here down through southern Virginia. Depending on the weather and position of the fronts in the morning, we might go a bit west of the planned route to get out of the weather sooner. Also, there will likely be a headwind, so we’ll need to make a fuel stop, probably in KSGJ (St Augustine, Fl). That’s the plan for now. I’m sure it will change. Watch this space for more updates on the trip.