Dave Jacka

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Day 33 – Delayed in Port Lincoln

With just 2 flying days to go until we get back to Tooradin, we were keen to get going this morning. But unfortunately, due to weather, today was not a flying day. I feel we are so close & yet so far away from home.

As a thunderstorm rolled over us last night, I was hoping this weather would pass & leave us with reasonable flying weather today. However it was not to be.

This morning, we packed up from our hotel, got picked up at 8.30 (a late start this morning) & was at the Port Lincoln Airport by 9 am. With planes packed & ready to go, we continued to make a number of calls to different people at various airfields along our flight path to determine the actual weather.

It was looking okay to the south, but that was in the opposite direction to which we needed to go. We were planning on flying north to Whyalla, then fly across the bay & track south to Aldinga. Aldinga is actually directly across the bay from Port Lincoln but we are trying to stick to the coast as much as possible.

To the north, there was rain & thunderstorms coming in & in Adelaide it was raining. This meant that there were two sections of lousy weather on our way to our final destination for today of Aldinga.

We looked at alternate routes going down south across the bay to Kangaroo Island & then up to Aldinga, but unfortunately, the restricted areas were still active. This meant we would have to fly a long way out to sea which I wasn’t that comfortable with as, if we got stuck in bad weather, we would have no way out.

We considered going further north & then east, however the low cloud & high mountains weren’t very inviting. It just wasn’t a safe option. With no reasonable options left, we decided to call it a day & spend another night in Port Lincoln.

The synoptic charts show another cold front coming through tomorrow morning. At this stage, we are not even sure if we will be able to get out tomorrow. If we can make it to Aldinga tomorrow, we will just spend one night there, instead of our planned 2 night stay & fly our last leg, hopefully, on Sunday back to Tooradin.

If we have to delay & stay in Port Lincoln for tomorrow night too, we will still spend one night in Aldinga on Sunday & fly into Tooradin on Monday. It’s in the hands of the weather gods!

Weather not looking good.

We managed to book in again into the same hotel as last night. Thanks to the Port Lincoln Hotel for giving us a generous discounted rate for our rooms.

While we were waiting for our rooms to be ready, Barry & Pamela took us on a sight seeing tour to Mick Hart’s Skypark. This is a property with 2 airstrips, a hangar & a barn full of boys’ toys. I loved the Pit Special plus also his RV6 which Mick flew out in yesterday to welcome me to Port Lincoln.

I want a Pitt Special.

 

At the Barnstormers Inn at Mick’s Skypark.

 

Me with Mick Hart.

Mick has collected lots of stuff, from planes to jeeps, to an old 50’s caravan & even an ornithopter & so much more, all arranged so neatly on display. We all had a great time checking it all out. Thanks Mick!

Mick really impressed me as he had a poster board showing a flight he did in 2011 in which he flew in his RV6, along with 2 other planes, around the coast of Australia in 14 days! (includes 3 rest days) – fantastic, that’s a quick way to see the country!

We went back to the hotel & settled in again for another night. I got my washing done (thanks Linda) & caught up on some emails.

All the pilots in the team will get together tonight & we will check the latest weather forecast & work out our next plan of action. I’m really hoping the weather improves so we can continue our journey tomorrow.

Over & out,

Dave.

24 thoughts on “Day 33 – Delayed in Port Lincoln”

  1. Hi Dave,

    Frustrating weather, especially so close to home, but stay safe and we will see you at YTDN when the weather gods are kinder!!!

  2. Thanks for all the great updates Dave, it has been amazing to follow you around Australia, fantastic photos. All the very best with the weather tomorrow, fingers and toes crossed and here’s to a triumphant returrn to Tooradin!

  3. Hi Dave and Crew, well its been amazing following you on this amazing trip around Aus, so close and yet so far away! We all know one thing as Pilots, wx can stop us anytime.. Not much You can do about it!
    Just love the blogs, stories, photos, videos of your trip.. enjoy each day as i check your route.

    Keep up the great work and safe flying back home when you get away.
    David

  4. Fingers crossed for good weather tomorrow. I really want to come down and see you when you all land at Tooradin, but due to an injury, I can’t drive and my chauffeur has to work on Monday.

    1. Hi Jenny,
      Sorry about the change of date for our arrival back in Tooradin. Unfortunately not much we can do about the weather!
      Thanks for all your support & for following the journey.
      Cheers, Dave.

  5. Great going Dave; you’ll soon be home! Hope you don’t get any more weather delays.Looking forward to cathcing up with you when you’re back. Love H&I

  6. Hi dave,
    Sorry dave, the YTDN fair weather flyers are grounded with the weather gods. Hope to see you on Sunday. I think your return will be like Lindbergh arriving in Paris. Good luck!

    1. Hi Glenn,
      We’ve also been delayed due to weather & expect to get to Aldinga on Sunday & heading back to Tooradin on Monday. Look forward to catching up with you when we get back. Cheers, Dave.

  7. Yes Dave, unfortunately the weather gods are naughty all round the state and we had to call off the trip to Aldinga tomorrow. Glenn and I might catch up with you wherever you are on Sunday and fly back with you.

    Cheers
    Jonathan

    1. Hi Jonathan,
      Yes, we also had to change our plans this afternoon due to weather. We decided to stay in Port Lincoln tomorrow night & will try to get to Aldinga on Sunday & back to Tooradin on Monday. Thanks for trying to come & I look forward to catching up with you when we get back to Melbourne. Cheers, Dave.

  8. Hi Dave and Crew,

    So close but yet so far…the we are having some ‘real’ weather here in Melbourne. I am not sure that you will get out tomorrow, so enjoy the rest day if you don’t. I am glad that you are in good hands there.

    What a wonderful trip. An amazing accomplishment. I can’t wait to see you back here.

    Cheers EJ, Aura and Bella Bo

  9. Dave,
    I should not have joked about the weather! It is pissing down in Melbourne and it looks like severe storms east & south east of Port Lincoln. However, I believe this severe weather will clear ahead of you. You will get to Aldinga tomorrow and maybe, Tooradin, Sunday.
    Rudy

    1. Hi Rudy, not much we can do about getting into Tooradin – now looks like it will be Monday.
      Look forward to catching up with you when I get back. Cheers, Dave.

  10. Hi Dave,

    I don’t know if you got my SMS but didn’t make it down to Kangaroo Island. As we left Wilpena Pound this morning, we could see the rain out to the West and the bad weather to the South and so we headed East for Broken Hill and then back to Tyabb. As we came down into Victoria we could see the front moving in and hoped we would be able to get back in time. We arrived at Tyabb about an hour before last light and it was raining lightly as I arrived home. Sorry you couldn’t get through and hope you have a nice day for your return to Tooradin.

    All the best,

    Peter

    1. Hi Peter, yes, its been unfortunate with the weather here. Thanks for the SMS – I did get it. Hope to catch up with you back at Tooradin. Thanks for trying to get to Aldinga. Cheers, Dave.

  11. Hi Dave, arranged a lunch at Tooradin on Sunday hoping to join in the big welcome but it appears the weather has dictated times as is part of flying. I am sure we will all be there in spirit on Monday when you arrive. Fantastic achievement, loved reading all your notes, safe return, Stephen

    1. Hi Stephen, that’s a shame. Wish we could have got there on Sunday, but as you know, not much we can do about the weather! Thanks so much for the thought & for following along. Catch up with you at Tooradin. Cheers, Dave.

  12. Hi Dave, you don’t know me but we’ve followed you since we saw your stand @Avalon. Reckon you’re amazing. Pity about the weather delay. Case of so close but so far. Hang in there mate, I’ll be keeping an eye on the news for your return. I’d drive down to Tooradin to see you come in but I’m laid up in hospital somewhat ironically with cervical spine issues. Nothing like you have to deal with though.Once again inspirational!!Cheers & safe flying. Dane

  13. Hi Dave,
    You are a true HERO in completing your dream to fly around Australia. A mean feat for an able bodied Pilot, yet you not only overcame the difficulties of flight but to do it as a quadraplagic is just amazing.
    I was introduced to your site by Rob Richards who olso learned to fly back in Zimbabwe having lost his leg. Look how far he has come in Aviation with only one leg. I was an Instructor at the Club where Rob learned to fly for 33 years and have many thousands of hours experience. I now live in Perth and am retired.
    I have followed your flight all around Australia and I SALUTE you for your wise decisions regarding the weather. Safety is always paramount and your decisions to not fly in marginal weather is praised. So many Pilots have NOT made it trying to get home in bad weather.
    Congratulations and I wish you many more happy flying hours and happy landings.

    Rod Bater

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