Wednesday, December 1, 2010

Kimball, NE

Kimball, Nebraska
Flown:  June 17, 2001
Aircraft:  Cessna 182 - N58798
Approximate round trip mileage: 183nm
Approximate flying time:  2:12

    This was a Fathers Day trip and probably the first conscious effort to add a new state to the list of states flown to.  I almost didn't include it on this site since it was so small, but Brig insisted, as it was an odd trip and probably helped prepare us for some of the stranger, or at least inconvenient, things to come in our future travels.  We hadn't flown much together since the big SoCal trip a year before.  Looking for an excuse to fly, we used Fathers Day and a state none of us had ever been to, Nebraska. 

     Looking at a map I picked the closest airport and it was Kimball.  After Greeley, there wasn't much to see, but crossing into Nebraska we could see the interstate and some lakes.  After landing in Kimball, at which we were the only airplane, we got a courtesy car to drive to a lake we saw, Lake Oliver, about 10 miles west.  This was our first experience of many to come in a courtesy car, which if you don't know, is a loaner left by the airport operator, or FBO, that you can borrow for short trips, first come first served.  Well, this one was a station wagon in pretty ratty condition, but it worked.  We took it out to Lake Oliver and had a nice time relaxing by the lake, although it was snowing cotton from all the cottonwoods like we'd never seen.

    On the way back is where the problem arose.  About halfway to the airport that car just died.  We had to pull off to the side of the road and call AAA.  We weren't quite sure where we were so they didn't know where to send a truck.  Lots of friendly people drove by and stopped to offer help, but by then the truck was on its way, which took a while to arrive.  Turns out the closest tow
truck was in Scottsbluff, about 45 miles away!  We got it towed to the airport and got ready to leave.  Before we did we saw a military painted aircraft that was parked on the ramp.  The guys flying it were having engine problems and after trying to go west, aborted and came back to Kimball.  They were in need of oil, which they couldn't get from the vacant FBO, and we didn't have any either.  The flight back was uneventful.