In the rainy
morning of May 2nd, our planned departure date, we
and Mike in the briefing office
at Geneva Airport and discussed actual meteo,
forecasts and our routing.
The two courageous crews who finally took off
from Geneva Airport on may 2nd 1998.
From left to right: Mike Paul, Rolf and Anne
Frieden, Bill Eisele.
Alps was out of the question due to solid IFR and icing conditions. We
to plan our
routing to our first stop in Brindisi in the southern Italy via the
Rhone valley, then over the Mediterranean
sea and on to Brindisi.
some delays due to the central European Air Trafic Control Agency in
twice modifications to our flight planned route, we fired up
HB-PON and N8873P and departed, waving
goodby to family members and friends who came to see us off.
After take off
it took about 30 seconds and we were in solid clouds, climbing to our
passing 7000ft, we picked up ice on our wings. Our own ice accumulation
, as we
reached our assigned level, but Bill and Mike were picking up more and
more of this nasty stuff, as they decided
on a lower level than we did.
Right at the
coast of the Mediterranean Sea at St.Tropez, we poped out of the clouds
marvellous blue sky.
>From there we continued over the Island of Elba, abeam
Roma and Naples end then inland over the Appenin
mountain range where again we
entered IMC and encountered some moderate icing again.
entire flight we kept periodic VHF and HF contact with N8873P. South of
Bill Isele flying behind
advised me, that he decided to divert to another
destination in southern Italy, due to the reported meteo.
After 5 ½ hours
HP-PON was established on the VOR/DME approach in Brindisy and we
As per a
reccomodation of the control tower operater, we booked into a small but
nice cosy hotel right down
town, close to the harbor.
my Anne and I enjoyed a marvelous fish dinner and excellent Italian
wine in a
typical fish place close by.