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Flight to Dead Cow Dry Lake for the STOL DRAGS

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Flight to Dead Cow Dry Lake for the STOL DRAGS

Postby skypics234 » Mon Oct 21, 2019 2:31 pm

We flew from Corona, CA (KAJO) to Dead Cow Lake for the STOL DRAGS which is a newly sanctioned competition event. The event is held on Dead Cow dry lake 60 miles north of Reno.

We were a flight of three with me in my Avid MK4 with a Jab Gen 4 2200 engine: a Kitfox with a 912 and a Thunder Gull with an HKS 2cylinder 4 stroke.

We flew up the west side of the Sierras and crossed over Lake Taho at 10,000 to stay below the clouds and above the rocks.

The Jab had no issue with the altitude while filled with 26 gallons of fuel and loaded with camping equipment. I had it fully leaned at that altitude and with a TAS of 95, full throttle I was using 2.7 GPH. The leaning really helps at the higher altitudes.

We landed at Dead Cow and tied down and tried to pitch our tents as the wind blew at 10-15 MPH.

There seemed to be as many campers and motor homes with their noisy generators as aircraft and there were plenty of different aircraft from mini bi-winged to a Pilatus Jet.

The best part of the experience was watching very good pilots competing in drag racing. For those not familiar, two planes take off and fly a quarter-mile at about 20 feet AGL, touch down, stop and turn around to fly back to the finish line. They fly in a slip with wingtips barely a couple of feet AGL.

Our friend in the Thunder Gull ultralight beat 5 out of 6 planes he was up against including a Cessna 180. What an embarrassment for them. The Thunder Gull won a great round of applause from the crowd. A David and Goliath event. He came in at 17th and the cut was 16.

On Saturday the winds came up and blew at 20-30 MPH coating everything with fine playa dust. It was difficult to keep the tent from blowing away and the fine powder was in everything.

The fireworks were the longest I have ever witnessed lasting 30 minutes.

It became hard to find a portapotty with toilet paper. Luckily we brought our own.

The admission was $125 which was supposed to include a bar-b-que Saturday night and breakfast Sunday AM. However, after seeing what the Bar-B-Que included which was pulled pork, burnt brisket, Mac and Cheese and some salad all of which were barely acceptable, we opted out of the Sunday breakfast and got an early start home.

We chose the east side of the Sierras for the return trip since my IFLY GPS app showed we would have tailwinds in excess of 30 MPH at 10,500 MSL.

We deviated off our course to drop in at Tehachapi Airport where we walked to a fantastic rib joint and a pee break.

Glad I had the experience, but won't return. I'll stick with flights to Idaho backcountry with beautiful scenery and showers.

The Jab 2200 Gen 4 was down from full to half on the oil after the 5-6 hour flight.

I couldn't be happier with the engine performance.

John M
skypics234
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