Now that we have struggled back home from Dayton and finally melted all the snow from our planes, it’s time to get set up for the Northeast Regional fly-in at Westfield MA (BAF).Arrival time will be our usual 10:00 (but I will be there by 0800). Two runways, no waiting, at BAF and the tower is forewarned. If the Wx is at all nice, the sky around up and down the Connecticut River will be full. I recommend you come in with Flight Following (Bradley Approach should know about us too.) If given a Right Base approach to Runway 33, it should be to the EAST of the ridge (Don’t want to piss off the McMansions on the ridge).
Be aware of a couple local conditions that give me no end of entertainment:
1) Within a very small area you will find Barnes/Westfield (BAF), Bradley Int’l (BDL), and Westover/Chicopee (CEF). They ALL look alike and have similar runways. BAF and CEF are right across the river from each other and sound alike (Westfield v/s Westover). If you see A-10 Warthogs you have BAF…if you see C-5’s you are at CEF. (Yeah, I know they look alike…but the 12,000′ runway at CEF should be a give away. You could run out of fuel on their taxiway.)
2) Jumpers all over the place! Northampton, MA Ellington, CT Orange, MA
Upon arrival head for (or ask for) the Terminal Ramp or Five Star Aviation. We will be looking for you and direct you in. Don’t expect FBO staff to be waiting for you…but it might happen.
Meeting will be in the Terminal (that crumbling 1950’s style tan building) and that is where the Flight Deck Restaurant is. They are expecting us too.
Five Star will not commit to their previous offer of 10% discount on fuel after the price jumped to $3.29. I am still working on them. Make your decision accordingly.
After meeting, lie-telling, and eating, I am arranging a tour of the Air Guard (A-10) outfit and/or the new Army Guard (Blackhawk) unit. Fall back position is a trip down to the Springfield Armory Nat’l Historic Site. (May be a time crunch, we’ll see.)
Drop me a line if you are coming so I can worry about you.
Steve Cote, N-1958L