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BushCat Ferry from Springs to Plettenberg Bay

by Benjamin Fincham

It started early morning at Springs airfield, needing to get to Plett in one day with a cold front heading in. I knew it had to be a very early departure because of the cold front and also knowing that the weather for the next few days after that will not be favourable and a delay by a few days was not acceptable.

Before contemplating take-off I performed a very thorough preflight inspection considering this is a brand new aircraft with only a few hours of testing on the Hobbs. Making sure to go through everything as thoroughly as possible would be crucial for the 540 Nautical Mile journey ahead.

The first leg from Springs to Gariep was absolutely great, flying low level and just enjoying the scenery. About an hour after departure I crossed the frontal clouds, now knowing that the trip is going to get a little bit bumpier. It was pretty much a non-event with only the air getting a little bit more turbulent closer to Gariep at around 11:00 local time. At Gariep, I waited for the fuel guy to once again brimming the tanks before I "hit the road" again.

As the wheels left the runway I realised this was going to be a very bumpy ride... I started climbing to 6500ft and still had a lot of turbulence, getting more altitude was the only option. I quickly chatted to JHB info and requested to climb to FL085, as always info was super friendly and happy to accommodate.

Approaching Plett I crossed over the Mountains and then started our descent, oh and what a descent it was... Crossing those mountains and entering into probably one of the top three most beautiful sceneries I have personally had the privilege to fly.

Upon arrival at about 15:30 there was a Cessna 182 dropping some skydivers and it felt like it was a great big welcoming to the BRAND NEW BUSHCAT arriving at its new home! The Owner was waiting there with one BIG smile just waiting to get hold of his new baby!

After a long day of flying, I was pleased to get to the new owner's home where I was treated to a great dinner and some seriously needed rest.

The next day we spent some time at the airfield before I boarded my return flight with Cemair. It was an absolute brilliant flight back and landed just after sunset.

I’d like to thank SkyReach and Steven Pattinson who trusted me to deliver his new Bushcat to its new home, I really hope he enjoys it as much as I did and flying that beautiful coastal countryside. Many safe landings!



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