time finally arrived, we still had plenty of rain in the area.
Sean was flying Scott's N104XP in this year, while Scott drove their
new camper in from Salt Lake. The weather worked out for Sean
until he made it to the MSP area...only 25 minutes from my home
base. Not wanting to fly an airplane that was not his, that he
had little time in, and little time with the specific avionics, Sean
took the logical safe step of just landing when the weather got below
VFR minimums, and I flew over IFR both ways to pick Sean and his dad
Nyle up for the night's stay. We hoped the weather would be
agreeable the next day, and it generally was....it wasn't a full
green-light go for OSH, but the conditions looked manageable, and the
next day we made it to the show. Scott was to arrive later that
night, after dark. We hadn't had any rain for nearly 24 hours,
but the grounds were all soaked, and all motorhomes were being parked
out of the grounds. Since we had high-ground sites, we thought
we'd be OK, and they let us in. The campgrounds were unpassable
for many campers though for nearly the whole week. With a great
tip from Bob Condrey on buying 2x2' square 3/4" plywood squares for
supporting the camper jacks, we went to Lowes and bought the wood
before Scott got there. We bought 2 full sheets of 4x8' plywood,
which would turn out to be one of the smartest things we could have
As Scott showed up, we had him drive non-stop into the site, on the highground. Unfortunately, to squeeze between some trees, he had to slow down to a stop, and the wheels sunk in enough that soon the truck was burying itself.
getting the truck and camper stuck, we separated the 2, and still had
to be careful getting Scott's truck out. We were making mud
fast. We placed our wood squares in front of the tires, and I
used old pieces of RV-10 crate to fill the gouges in the ground.
We developed a method of quickly moving pads from behind to the front
of the tires, so he could slowly drive forward, reposition, and reverse
to hook up the trailer, then continue forward into the site, driving on
pads of wood the whole time. This worked perfectly and was the
only thing that saved us from not getting the campers in place.
When his dad's camper got pulled in, we never even started without our
pads, and it went in very easily. So a tip for future wet
years...buy the wood, buy THICK wood, and make a continuous road to
drive on...it works!
we got them in place that night too. The above pics show the
storms that came through. We had some heavy rains, and plenty of
thunder. At one point, a poor old guy in a motorhome scared the
bejeezes out of half the campground when his motorhome's alarm system
got wet and wouldn't shut off...at the same time the winds were high,
and it sounded exactly like a tornado alert. But, it all soon
passed and we woke up to a soaked campground again...with a river
running through our sites. We were parked on high ground, but the
central area was just a flowing river. After buying a thick
rubber mat for in front of the camper, we were set to live it out for a
day or so...and by maybe Monday it was all dried up again.
Through the week the ground never hardened up, and we left the planes
parked most of the time, but many airplane parking and camper parking
areas were never opened throughout the whole week.
Below you can see our iphone/ipad/ipod charging station. We came prepared as nearly everyone on our site had an iphone. With my old Odyssey PC925 for daytime, and a generator for morning and night, we were set to keep everything charged for the whole week!
the very pleasant opportunity to finally meet Anna, Scott and RaNae's
new baby! With luck, she'll grow up never missing an OSH!
More pics below of the weather, which was frequently tenative, with
hail storms coming at times, to keep the plane owners terrified.
Man that weather was something this year.
before you knew it, it was time to head out for the week. We had
a great time, but I forgot to get some shopping done that I had wanted
to do, and as usual, didn't see nearly as much of the show as I
wanted. But I got to hang out with some really cool people,
Sean's dad being a new one of them, and we just plain had a
blast! On the way out of OSH, flying the departure, I had the
added fun of blowing the doors off a mooney that was also
departing. I'm sure my fuel flow was higher than his, but we can
easily outclimb them and have similar flows at altitude. Now
we're already looking forward to next year, as long as the rains don't
stay as bad as this year.