Returning to Flying – Two Steps Forward
by Mike Land
After a 22-year hiatus from flying (due to work and business travel, family, and other commitments), I finally had time to get my wings back and start flying again. Coming back to wonderful Galt airport, where my flying started so many years ago, I jumped into the C172s and got back in the air. Rebekah and Adam were a great help.
Next dream; ownership. I reviewed what my mission was and all of the planes available that fit that type. Grass strips and shorter X-country trips were the plan. A two-place used EAB or Light Sport would keep costs down, and I really like tail-draggers (despite the insurance rates). I’ve always liked the looks and construction of the Kitfox, so I flew out to Idaho, took a factory tour, and flew their demo plane, a model 7. It handled very nicely, and has folding wings for trailering.
Becoming a habitual Barnstormers viewer, I just happened to stumble on a fellow in Minneapolis area that was getting out of the sport. He had a Kitfox model 4 (faster and more stable than earlier models, but not a roomy as the newer ones). I was able to pick it up for a very good price. Then I had to get it home. Rebekah found a hanger for me, and after three trips up to Minneapolis, Paul Sedlacek leant me his trailer and I brought my new toy home. You get a lot of weird looks while driving your airplane down the road, but it does start a lot of conversations.
I’m still working through some bugs (A Subaru engine with some cooling problems), but it does run and most of the instruments work. I will sort out the plane and get it ready for inspection (I’m still looking for an A and P who will help me make the plane airworthy, and will sign off experimental aircraft). It’s been a great adventure so far. Galt is a great place to have this adventure, and EAA Chapter 932 is a great group of people.