Day 6, Flight 1 Inverness to Dundee (Captain: Paul)
Breakfast at Glen Mohr was nothing to write home about, but the service was OK. For around £100 for an apartment that slept all three of us, at very short notice was still a bargain..
We travel back to the airport by taxi and get dropped at the handling agents who then won’t let us in as we are not a commercial flight being handled by their company. So we are made to take a long walk back to security hut where they want to see ID and Pilots License for each of us before letting us airside. This is the first time these have been checked since departing Essex. Furthermore it was not really clear that either of the people looking at our licenses knew what to look for? I’m sure one was upside down most of the time! We have to follow the green path back to the GA area and end up back in front of the handling agents building, where we fill out a payment form for landing fee and overnight parking. Nobody around so the form was placed into a letter box. No loos in the vicinity and overall GA not was made very welcome at all. The friendliest person was a passenger of a private twin-turbo-prop with his own crew.
We fly around the Scotty-dogs head of Scotland from Inverness to Dundee. Aberdeen insisted we stay low level, not above 800ft AGL, well actually above sea level, as we were also required to stay off shore. After about 20 minutes of flying at that height it strangely started to feel quite normal as we watched the heli’s buzz above us going in and out to the offshore rigs.
Dundee approach was a very long final with a great view of bridges across the Tey. So good in fact that we are all looking far ahead for Dundee not realising how close it was to us. So it was a case of chop and drop and try and look like we meant it!
We look around Tayside aviation (Simon knows some people there) – then we are kindly provided a lift from here to the hotel (as we decided to stay in Dundee for the night). From the hotel we catch a lift into the centre of Dundee. Lunch at an Italian Grill, then a good look around town and a long 4.5 mile walk back to hotel past the airport. As we walk along the Tey we see the information boards about the Short Mayo Composite aircraft and the world record long distance flight by a sea plane. The “Mercury” was the upper component of the Short Mayo Composite which took off from the Tey on 6th October 1938 on top of the main flying boat for assisted take off enabling her to carry a greater fuel load and then separated in the skies north of Dundee and Mercury flew 6041 miles to Alexander Bay South West Africa. Very interesting history of the aircraft development in the 1930’s in Dundee.
Meal with Stuart from CATS at the hotel in the evening. 2 hours for two courses, not the best service at the hotel, but the price was right!!