Monday, February 5, 2024

What's Up by Leroy Cook


What’s Up




Suggested Banner: Now That's More Like It


A perfect week of flying weather encouraged airplane owners to drag out the bird and take it up. Every day saw visitors coming and going at Butler aerodrome, and most of the hangar residents took advantage of the wide-open conditions. One pilot asked advice on planning a flight to Kansas City Downtown airport; “Not much planning needed,” I responded, pointing to the skyscrapers looming on the horizon 50 miles away. “Just aim to the left of those buildings.”


Among the week's transient arrivals were a refueling RV-10 homebuilt four-seater and a Cessna Skyhawk gassing up, along with a brace of Piper Archers, a Piper Tomahawk and a Piper Cherokee Six. Mike Golden flew down from New Century in his Cessna Turbo Centurion.


From the local hangars, Les Gorden had his Piper Twin Comanche and Beech Bonanza F35 out, Randy Miller flew some practice in a Cessna 150, Jon Laughlin retrieved his Piper Cherokee 180C, Jim and Danny Ferguson flew the family Cessna Skylane, Roy Conley levitated in his Grumman Tr2, Eric Eastland exercised his Cessna Skyhawk and Christian Tucker took the Mooney M-20C up.


The high-roller fans flying their private planes into Las Vegas for the Super Bowl this weekend are paying dearly for the privilege. Not only do you need an airspace reservation time slot from the FAA, the City of Lost Wages wants a $750 to $3000 fee to use its satellite airports, and then the Fixed Base Operators charge for parking on their ramp space. A Cessna Skyhawk pays $2175 to park for the event, and a private jet will be charged up to $14,729. Half the airplane spaces are filled up by companies supporting the game, like sponsors, network producers, team associates and family members, and VIPs. It's not for the common person.


With all the talk of building a new ball stadium in the middle of Kansas City, I wonder if anyone has considered the impact it would have on Downtown airport? The Homeland Security Department has this pointless rule forbidding air traffic within three miles of a stadium that seats 30,000 or more, from an hour before to an hour after any event. As if establishing a no-fly zone really deters a dedicated terrorist. Anyhow, if the planners aren't careful a downtown-sited sports facility could really disrupt goings and comings at old MKC. It's bad enough having to dodge games at the present outlying Sports Complex.


The weekly quiz from last time wanted to know, “what's a 'Category III' approach and landing?” It's a special landing procedure to allow an arrival in really bad weather. Category I requires more-or-less normal 200-foot cloud ceilings, Category II needs 100-foot, and Category III has no ceiling requirement at all. Special equipment and training are needed.  For next time, what color are the runway lights at our airport, as seen rolling down the centerline? You can send your answers to [email protected].


Help Wanted in the City of Archie