Leg 199, Midway Atoll via Wake Island to Pagan Island, Northern Mariana Islands
DAY03_09.PLN (2.2 KB)
Basically just 2 long flights today visiting one of the most isolated islands in the world. I timed the second flight to go over night while sleeping which almost went horribly wrong. I saved the plane from splashing down with 5 minutes to spare. I very rarely sleep this long, got up to a stall warning, empty right tank and the plane on a glide path to the water down below. Close call.
03-08 Henderson Field PMDY 12:55 PM
03-08 Sand Island HI99 1:16 PM 1026nm next min 13.9 nmpg 18% mixture
18% mixture FL75 45F 2423 rpm IAS 135 TAS 151 GS 149 935.0 rt 40.00 2 knot headwind
18% mixture FL75 49F 2423 rpm IAS 135 TAS 152 GS 157 687.0 rt 25.55 6 knot tailwind 17.2 nmpg
19% mixture FL75 49F 2423 rpm IAS 141 TAS 158 GS 163 672.0 lt 34.56 6 knot tailwind
19% mixture FL75 52F 2423 rpm IAS 142 TAS 159 GS 157 366.0 lt 14.80 6 knot headwind 15.5 nmpg
20% mixture FL75 52F 2423 rpm IAS 146 TAS 164 GS 162 359.0 rt 24.98 7 knot headwind
20% mixture FL75 53F 2423 rpm IAS 147 TAS 165 GS 156 88.0 rt 4.57 14 knot headwind 13.3 nmpg
03-08 Wake Island Airfield PWAK 7:45 PM
67.32 gallons used, 1026nm, 15.2 nmpg, 6:29, 158.3 knots
03-08 Wake Island Airfield PWAK 10:11 PM
1187nm next min 16.0 nmpg ~8 hour flight time, slowing down to arrive in the morning
16% mixture FL75 53F 2149 rpm IAS 99 TAS 112 GS 111 1156.0 lt 36.69
16% mixture FL75 53F 2149 rpm IAS 100 TAS 113 GS 115 1018.0 lt 30.66 2 knot tailwind 22.9 nmpg
16% mixture FL75 53F 2149 rpm IAS 100 TAS 113 GS 115 1018.0 rt 40.00 ETE 530 (2:39 PM)
Bizarre incident, rt tank empty in the morning (3.0), mixture lever at 57% others 100% ? 7:27 AM (9:27 PM)
Stall warning, plane sunk just below 5,000 ft, switched tank, restarted engine, climbed back to FL75
16% mixture FL75 53F 2423 rpm IAS 110 TAS 125 GS 138 70.0 lt 29.31 14 knot tailwind 24.7 nmpg
03-09 Pagan Airstrip TT01 8:03 AM Trees at end of runway
50.28 gallons used, 1187nm, 23.6 nmpg, 9:52, 120.3 knots
Flight time 16:42 3 stops
Kure Atoll in sight, part of the Northwestern Hawaiian Islands
Kure is an important nesting area for a number of seabird species and wintering area for a variety of migratory bird species from North America and Asia. Kure Atoll is also an important pupping and resting area for Hawaiian Monk seals.
Kure Atoll Conservancy works hard to keep the island clean from ocean debris
Papahānaumokuākea Marine National Monument at Kure Atoll
VFA-27 Royal Maces flying over and “The 98 rock” on the right
A desperate final message left by a POW on the run carved into a coral rock
Switching over to the still full left tank (40 gallons) before heading off to bed
Up to 115 knots ground speed with a slight tailwind, ETE 8h50, about 8:36 AM arrival my time
According to lnm I can stay in the air for over 14 hours at 70 gallons left, should be 8 hours on 40 gallons.
I usually never sleep this long, got up at 7:25 AM, walked over to the laptop to the stall warning sound. Tank dry (3.0 gallons remaining) while the plane was drifting down at 1000 fpm, just over 5,000 ft left. I quickly switched over to the left tank, restarted the engine and gave it full power to climb back to 7,500 ft.
Scary landing, trees at the end of the runway (tree line after the field above, before the actual strip)
I dodged the trees (might have snagged a few branches with the landing gear) and got it down in time to stop at a little building.
50.28 gallons used over 1187nm, 23.6 nmpg, 9h52 flight time, average 120.3 knots
I tested how close I came from splashing down by timing how long the plane can glide on auto pilot from 7,500ft without fuel. 7 minutes… That’s all. AP keeps trimming up to 100% trim while the plane slows down to 70 knots IAS dropping up to 1100 fpm. Then something ‘resets’ and AP drops the nose, speeds up to then tries to climb again. It did this cycle 3 times before running out of room and hitting the water at 80 knots IAS. AP keeps the plane level all the way at least.
Tomorrow (or this evening) exploring the Northern Mariana Islands.