Wednesday, August 5, 2009

Escalante - Los Angeles / Beechcraft Baron 58 (N2751W) / IFR

Having landed in the tiny town of Escalante and having rapidly exhausted the novelty thereof, I undertook a return trip to civilization, namely, Los Angeles. I filed IFR from CABER to LAX (Escalante has no instrument departure procedures, so I picked up the clearance after I was in the air and approaching CABER).

This flight was a bit disjointed, because I interrupted it shortly after beginning in order to sleep in real life (I was up late, as usual). If I were a total purist, I would have landed, but I was getting sleepy and I didn't want to go to the trouble of starting a whole new trip, so I just paused it and went to bed, just a bit east of Las Vegas.

I picked it up again the next morning. Even so, the break disturbed my situational awareness a bit and it took a while to get back into the swing of the flight. Since I interrupted the flight, I was offline and had no ATC, so I was on my own. I had initially climbed to 11000, the MEA at CABER, and then shortly thereafter to 14000 to meet some MEAs later on the route. After passing over Sin City, though, I was able to descend to 12000, although I kept the oxygen flowing. I briefly descended to 8000 but then had to climb to 12000 again for another MEA east of Pomona. On crossing Pomona I descended to 6000, then to 4000, and by that time I was east of LAX and almost aligned with my chosen runway (25R), I descended again to 2000.

The landing was very smooth and I taxied over to my favorite parking spot, which I think belongs to Landmark or Mercury (I haven't been able to find out for sure).

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