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Interesting day flying today

bartmc

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Flew over to Felts Field in Spokane with the mission of "Lets go get some Krispy Kreme doughnuts" from my girlfriend. At least they are 10.00 doughnuts instead of 100.00 hamburgers but we had to buy 24 to make that math work out. So, I hit a headwind stronger than I have ever encountered, my 10GPH figure plus 2hr reserve really worked out as I was averaging about 65-75MPH across the ground (about 155MPH average on the way back) . Was flying into an airmet tango for moderate turbulence and got bumped around a good bit, the airmet was due mountain waves, Roller coaster ride is how I would describe it, VSI pegging both up and down, I tried my damnedest to stay away from the mountains those risers and sinkers made it tough to stay within 500 ft of my filed altitude. Guess we were flying on the edge of a low and a high pressure system with a cold front moving in from the coast, made for some interesting weather. About 20 miles from back home, I noticed a lenticular cloud and elected to "Get the hell away from that". Then landed (in winds I had never seen at my airport before) and on the drive back noticed what appeared to be 10-15 lenticulars forming over the mountains around the valley, I called up NOAA thats on the field here in Missoula on the drive back and asked them if i was seeing things or if the valley was really surrounded by lenticular clouds, NOAA guy said "Hang on let me go outside and see" and confirmed that it indeed was. Crazy winds, crazy turbulance, crazy clouds. I still dont like turbulence and not sure if I'll ever be comfortable dealing with it. Oh, Seattle Center, Spokane appch/departure and salt lake center are great to deal with, and flight following could be the best thing ever invented for VFR pilots. The controllers over at felts field are great too. A guy had a handheld radio and called ground from his car looking for a restroom and they vectored him to the restaurant on the field and referred to him as "Felts Car".
 

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