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01-07 MAR 2023

Wednesday, March 1st, 2023

I went to the aeroclub in Matanza every other day. Originally my plan was to spend most of my time doing preventive maintenance, but flying was just too much fun. Argentina suffered a heat wave with temperatures up to 40 degrees. Combined with dry air, this is a piece of cake, but with high humidity, it is close to hell. The school in Matanza operates several 150s and they flew only in the mornings when it was a bit colder. Performance was marginal in the heated thin afternoon air. It was unbearable too – and oil temperatures regularly reached the redline.

As Matanza is located within the Ezeiza Control zone, they fly 500 ft patterns here. Students are encouraged to fly tight patterns to stay in gliding distance of the field, which also has the advantage to practice a lot of landings in every given time. Without any intention to set up a new personal record, I easily managed to do 9 patterns within 18 minutes flight time:

Landing a 140 is pure fun. Three-points, 2-wheel and 1-wheel landings: The slow, rudder-agile, responsive high-wing taildragger with its low inertia dances like a fully controllable leaf in the wind. But let’s not talk about the climb out. With two persons, close to MTOM and the 35 degrees we typically enjoyed at 9 AM, the 140 quickly reached its limit.

Lucho introduced me to Victor. Normally he flies a 777 to Montevideo and Ezeiza and enjoys flying the Piper Cub in Matanza during his layovers and vacations. I introduce him to the 140:

Asado in Matanza:

Friday, March 3rd, 2023

This morning, Anna joined me for some fun flying hours. In a real flight training environment, an instructor starts with straight and level flight, goes into airwork and let the student develop all the skills required in the pattern, before flying the pattern. We didn’t do this. We flew over to El Pajaro, where I introduced her to Oswaldo who followed his father in operating the air advertising company now. There is very little traffic in El Pajaro, ideal for teaching patterns to a beginner.

Sunday, March 5th, 2023

Julio, one of my neighbors, was curious about my flying hobby, so he joined me this morning.

We flew through the visual corridors and exercised a bit south of R9, close to the coast of the Rio de la Plata. He made a nice video of our flight and was especially thrilled when we landed at El Pajaro, turned around at the runway end, and took off – apparently without anybody caring much.

Besides flying in the morning, we continued to enjoy beautiful Buenos Aires. We couldn’t do much in the afternoons, it was just too hot. But the evenings were lovely. The city has much to offer. Not only around its scenic harbor area:

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