Providence (RI, USA) to Goose Bay (Canada)


31/07/2008


Spent a very pleasant few days with distant cousins in Providence, Rhode Island. I hadn’t seen Mary and her daughters Deb, Cindy, and Corrie for over twenty years, so there was a lot of catching up to do with regard to what had happened in all our lives. Rhode Island is (I believe) the smallest state in the USA and seems an attractive place to live in or perhaps to retire to. Corrie and her family hosted a get-together evening meal in the garden of her house one evening, and we all had a great time.

I would have liked to have stayed longer but am feeling a tug for home. Also, I only had permission for Romeo Tango to remain within the USA until 31 July and was told that 7 days notice would be required to extend that time. So it was a case of getting out the charts and planning the flight to Goose Bay, Canada. I decided to file the flight plan last night, to make it less of a rush this morning, but while talking to the Flight Planning service, their computer system went down, and they were also undergoing an update at the same time. At the end of the conversation I was told that there appeared to be 2 flight plans registered for me, so no problem or so I thought.

This morning, I telephoned to double check that the flight plan had been accepted, and was told that there was no sign of any flight plan for Romeo Tango. So it was a case of filing it again, and getting a weather forecast, and checking availability of customs etc. Then Mary and daughter Deb drove me to Providence airport and I was able to show them Romeo Tango up close. I think they were impressed but neither of them fancied sitting in it for 10 hours or more....

Customs cleared me out over the telephone, and I soon departed around 9:30 local time. The weather forecast had not been particularly good, with thunderstorm activity and rain expected along the route. It looked like I would be in it for about an hour, and I expected that I would be able to re-route (or be re-routed) around much of it. And that’s exactly what happened –the Boston and Bangor controllers re-routed me about twenty miles further east than my planned track and this avoided most of the bad weather. I did go through some rain and cloud for an hour or so but without any thunderstorm activity.

As I went over the St Lawrence River I was asked by Montreal to descend from my cruising level of 9,000 feet to 6,000 feet and contact an airfield called Baie Comeau. I descended, assuming that I was to be routed under some particular approach area, but it soon became evident that Baie Comeau was expecting me to land. This looked like a glitch with the flight plan activities. Soon sorted out the misunderstanding and then it was back up to 9,000 feet again, through more rain and cloud but with a direct routing to Goose Bay. Most of the flight had been in or above cloud but as I descended towards Goose Bay, the weather improved and it was straight in for a visual landing on Goose Bay’s runway 08.

Flight Data: 921 nautical miles in 6 hours 5 minutes.