2016 Fly-Ins
IMG 0941-7846The Annual Mystery Fly-in went off this year with only minor flaws, most having to do with dead batteries. A full crew showed up at the GAC to take the devilish test, followed by a fly-in to Bakersfield Muni and the Rocket Shop Café for lunch. This time everyone went directly to the correct airport in Bakersfield, breaking with tradition. The two teams whose aircraft were voltage challenged came up with a secondary drive-in destination, Brouwerij West in San Pedro, where as a consolation prize they were able to have beer with their lunch.
The winning team this year, taking home the much coveted Mystery Trophy, consisted of Steve Sappington, Nancy Schunke, Robert Sedey and Lynne Sedey.
Special thanks to the Mystery Fly-in Committee who put the test together. Robert Beckwith, James Pavlick, Joe Cogan, Dan Delane, and Mitch Taylor came up with enough hard (or just screwy) questions that no team got them all correct. Take that, Google!
IMG 4844-7730Our October fly-in was great, with 14 adventurers arriving at the Oxnard/Ventura area in four airplanes and four cars. The weather included some clouds and haze, but conditions were VFR.

After everyone arrived we all met at Tom and Patti's suite for the traditional cocktail hour, a beautiful sunset over the harbor. For dinner, we all headed to The Greek Mediterranean Steak and Seafood Restaurant, some by car and some on foot. All enjoyed the food, beverages and the lively entertainment with a view of the Ventura Harbor.

Saturday, we boarded a 9:00 a.m. boat for our trek across the channel viewing dolphins along the way. The weather was warm and enjoyable all day, though the surge was a bit more than we preferred due to a N. California storm. The kayaking was really cool, checking out many caves, plus learning from the guides about the history of Santa Cruz Island and all of the Channel Islands. Two of our group even took a few dips in to the water along the way, giving the guides excellent rescue training! After lunch, some of the group hiked up the mountain for some beautiful views.
The boat trip back was memorable due to meeting up with a superpod of probably 1,000 dolphins! We were quite entertained as the boat stopped to allow us to watch. Upon returning and getting freshened up, we all met again at Tom and Patti's suite for another cocktail party, this one a bit more subdued as we were exhausted! For dinner we broke up into a few groups for different dining options.

On Sunday, we all met up at 9:00 a.m. for a 20 minute walk (or 3 minute drive) to have breakfast at Le Petit Cafe Bakery at the harbor. Weather was marginal VFR for the flight home...all made it home safely. Thanks to Patti and Tom for organizing the adventure; they are so happy that "everyone survived!"
20160910 113002-7644Like a plague of locusts, the DAF descended en mass on March AFB for a day at the March Field Air Museum. In a spectacular display of precision flying, everyone made the first turnoff from Runway 32, although some missed the subsequent turn onto Taxiway Golf. The 18 aircraft (which may be a DAF record) were marshalled in to Million Air, and filled their entire ramp area. Jodie and Lori took driving duty to ferry everyone from Million Air to the Air Museum, where the visit started with a taco lunch. Larry checked everyone off and handled coordination. 

The collection of aircraft and aviation memorabilia at the museum is massive, including an SR-71 and many aircraft rarely seen up close. The B-47 and B-52 were there with their massive landing gear, along with the Globemaster, Flying Boxcar, and an assortment of smaller aircraft. There was plenty of time after lunch to wander the grounds and check them out, before Mitch and Patti took over the driving duties to get everyone back to the airport. 

Many thanks to Million Air and their staff. They opened on Saturday just for the DAF, had everything waiting for us, and gave us the use of their crew cars for the day. They did a great job, and made us feel very welcome. The civilian Airport Manager, Gary Gosiglia, showed up as well to greet us. Great things are happening there, and it's nice to see new opportunities for General Aviation.

Finally, thanks go to Dan Delane, for setting everything up. After all that effort, he wasn't able to attend the fly-in due to work!
For our July excursion, twenty plus DAFers made the flight to Bend Oregon, home of the Sisters Quilt Show, the Bend Ale Trail, Lava Butte, and a host of other activities. A number of people either came early or made Bend part of extended trips, so there was plenty going on. There were some low clouds and a little rain for those arriving that afternoon, but nothing that required a clearance. The traditional cocktail hour in Larry and Jodie's room was followed by a breakup into smaller groups for dinner; some more adventurous DAFers briefly attended the adjacent music festival. 
Saturday, the group dispersed to enjoy kayaking, bike riding, fishing (as opposed to "catching"), hiking, and touring Lava Lands. The weather was beautiful, with perfect temperatures for outdoor pursuits. After the day's action, another cocktail party was followed by a group dinner at Greg's Grill in the Old Mill District. Good food and good company, with a great view of the river.
Sunday, the weather was back to some low clouds and a little rain, but again nothing that prevented a safe VFR flight. Everyone had a safe trip home, including those who made a few other stops on the way. 
Thanks to Larry and Jodie for arranging the trip, and special thanks to Nancy Schunke for setting up Saturday's dinner.
This month’s Flaming Brisket fly-in fell afoul of June gloom, with marginal conditions at Torrance and even worse at Ague Dulce. However, all was not lost! The crack Volunteer Party Brigade swung into action, setting up tables and chairs by the picnic table in the East Ts. Food was unwrapped, the brisket was sliced (well, hacked really), and the picnic began. 45 or more DAFers ate, drank and generally had a good time. Somehow, thirty pounds of brisket disappeared, along with a large assortment of sides.

The sun made a bit of an appearance as the day wore on, and the temperature was about ideal. Despite the lack of aviating, it was a great day. Many thanks to all the volunteers who got not only got everything set up, but stayed to take it down and put it all away. It couldn’t have happened without them.

On a fine Friday the 13th, 26 plus DAFers set out for for Catalina Island and a weekend in Avalon. The date may have had an influence on how things went; two aircraft and one boat had to turn back to Torrance on Friday, the planes due to low clouds that moved in, and the boat due to mechanical issues. Some people made a quick turnaround and took the boat, others waited until Saturday to make the crossing, but eventually everyone arrived safely.

The DAF fly-in to Rosamond Airpark was a rousing success, with 18 aircraft and 37 or more people descending on El Indio Restaurant for lunch. The weather was great, and there was plenty of time for conversation as the size of the group overwhelmed the kitchen. However, once it arrived the food was very good, and the people at the restaurant were quick with drink and chip refills while we were waiting.

After lunch, Craig and Wayne put on some impromptu fly-bys, after Craig graciously used his smoke system to give Wayne a special anti-corrosion oil bath. Unfortunately, visibility in Wayne's cockpit was reduced to the point where he couldn't find the latch to close the canopy; at least his hair stayed in place the rest of the day! Peter and Steve followed suit with a quick pass (emphasis on "quick"), and then everyone headed out for the trip home. After the headwinds on the way up, the trip home was quite a bit faster. Thanks to Linda Howard, Robert Beckwith and Maggie Smith for their work setting it up.

Once again, the Del Amo Flyers headed out to Laughlin, NV for a weekend fly-in. Some of the group flew out on Thursday to scout things out (read have some drinks and kick back), and the rest joined in on Friday. Great weather and a bit of a tailwind... what more could you ask! After the usual cocktail hour, the group headed out for a riverboat dinner cruise. Later, some of the group hit the crap table, while others made for blackjack and the slot machines. No giant jackputs were reported, but we had a good time.

Saturday, some braved the gusty winds and walked up to the dam. Others went to hike and look at petroglyphs, or headed over to the mall. In the evening, we headed over to the Riverside Casino for the Man in Black show. Shawn Barker does a great job playing Johnny Cash, and his patter between songs not only sounds like Johnny but also provides some insight into both the man and the songs.

Sunday, the group headed back. The flight was smooth, and Torrance cleared off well before our arrival. Thanks to Craig and Jody for a perfect trip!
A crowd of 25 plus DAFers descended on Cable Airport for lunch at Maniac Mike's Cafe. The skies at Torrance cleared in time for ten aircraft to make the trip, and three cars braved the freeway traffic to join them. We had a great reception there, with the Cable family out to direct the parking for the group. Cheap fuel, with an additional discount for DAFers, got plenty of people's attention. After an excellent lunch at the cafe, everyone successfully avoided the TFRs for a safe flight home.

Our first "fly-in" of 2016 was a great success.  Almost 50 DAFers convened at the GAC on the morning of January 23 and tool a luxury tour coach to the California Science Center.  Although the predicted rain didn't appear, the morning of the 23rd was not VFR-friendly - so the decision to have the traditional bus trip in January versus a fly-in was the right one.

First on the itinerary was an IMAX Theater showing of "Journey to Space".  This 3D movie highlighted the history of the Space Shuttle and Hubble telescope programs as well a detailed exploration of the challenges presented by a future trip to Mars.