I got a sleep in this morning until 5 am. Once up, I headed out to check the beautiful sunrise. Normally, I don’t have time for this but we saved some time as the planes were parked right beside our rooms at the Nullarbor Hotel. This is what all good hotels should have!
It was so quiet – apart from the road trains passing by occasionally – & the faint hum of a generator powering the hotel in the distance. It was nice to enjoy the moment.
I was really hankering for an egg & bacon toasted sandwich for breakfast &, as all good roadhouses should have, I managed to get one. It was a promising sign for a good day ahead! Also, the weather forecast was looking good too. It did mention light rain showers at Ceduna & Port Lincoln with a cloud base of 8,000 feet – but this never eventuated.
After a quick team photo with the nothingness behind us, we got going & headed off toward our refuelling stop for today, Ceduna.
I had anticipated for close to 1.5 hours of flying to Ceduna, but once we got up in the air, I had a ground speed of 138 knots. I was really moving! Yesterday, all my cameras ran out of power so I missed getting a shot of the cliffs around the Nullarbor area. When I took off today, one of my cameras played up so I missed my second opportunity. However, I positioned one of my cameras looking straight down so at least I had one camera that could capture the cliffs.
It was a beautiful morning flying! This is when I really enjoy the experience! Smooth air, blue skies & even though it was cold outside, I had the sun shining in, warming me up. With the great tailwind, it took us a little over an hour to get to Ceduna. I was tempted to ask the rest of the team if they wanted to keep going & head straight to Port Lincoln, but my bum wouldn’t have agreed to that length of time in the seat.
Ceduna had a really nice airport, but there were lots of flies! We refuelled & started eating our sandwiches, prepared by the Nullarbor Hotel. As I took a bite of the sandwich, I swear I ate a couple of flies! They were atrocious, the worst we’ve encountered around Australia. It’s very difficult to balance a cup-a-soup in one hand, a sandwich in the other, while trying to shoo flies away from everything.
We took off at around 12.30 from Ceduna & got a lovely tailwind again. At one stage, I even got up to 140 knots ground speed (30 knot tailwind). The weather stayed perfect & we just followed the coast down, taking a few snapshots along the way.
As we approached Coffin Bay, 3 aircraft radioed me asking my location. They had set out from Port Lincoln Flying Club to meet me & the team, & to escort us in. Thanks so much to Mick Hart, Kym Roach & Lyall Jaensch for this great welcome! It was awesome! I think they thought we would be going direct into Port Lincoln, but instead we all took the longer scenic route down south to West Point before heading back up to Port Lincoln. I’m determined to follow the coast around Australia as much as possible.
After landing at Port Lincoln, there were a lot of people waiting to meet me & the team. Thanks so much to Barry Besold & the Port Lincoln Flying Club for such a great, warm welcome – where I had the opportunity to speak with so many wonderful people!
Thanks to Peter Woolford & also Paul from Port Lincoln Passenger Service for helping with our transportation while in Port Lincoln. We also greatly appreciate the support of the Port Lincoln Flying Club & the Port Lincoln Hotel for helping us with our accommodation for tonight.
All the team went for dinner with Barry & his wife Pamella & also Peter who also helped with our transportation. We had a great night!
Just 2 more flying days to go! (not that I’m counting).
Over & out,