Playing with the clouds

We awoke to a light dusting of snow yesterday, but sadly it was gone by the time we clambered into the Robin for a local flight in the afternoon. I was at the controls; I’m becoming more confident in flying this lovely aircraft and Lee says I can fly it solo soon, so I’m trying to keep current by flying it fairly often.


It was the most glorious day, and the winter light was amazing, highlighting the rolling landscape and making it look almost like a soft green blanket covering the country. Apologies for all the cockpit reflections on some of these!




Once away from the cloud we were able to climb high. This was the view as we approached 5,000ft – we got to 6,000ft not long after.


This was the view from my side…


…and this was the view from Lee’s.


This is the Cotswolds town of Moreton in Marsh. On the far side, you might be able to make out the disused airfield that now serves as a firefighters’ training ground.


As we turned back towards home, we reached the cloud layer and had some fun flying around it before starting our descent. One of the most magical things about flying near the cloud is that, when the sun is behind you, you get to see your shadow with a little rainbow around it.


You can see how it appears and disappears in this video.

The other cool thing about flying past clouds is that you can actually appreciate how fast you’re going. We cruise around at about 100kts (115mph) in the Robin, but unless you fly low (not advisable) or near clouds, it doesn’t really feel that fast because you don’t have anything fixed to compare it with. The clouds just hang there, and it’s great fun whizzing around them, as you can see in this video (I got Lee to fly the plane while I was filming these, don’t worry!).

There were a few snow showers around, though none of it seemed to be settling. Snow showers look strange from the air – as if the clouds have expanded right the way down to the ground. Rain showers are usually quite grey, whereas this was – as you might expect – white.


Here’s a shot of the airfield as we made our way back into the circuit to land. To think that this will all be a housing estate before too long…


It was about 2.15pm when we made it back down to Earth, and after we landed we tucked the Robin up in its hangar and got on with some work. I’ll leave you with this pic I took a little later on as the sun started to go down on what had been a lovely day. I love the teasels silhouetted against the pink sky.


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