Ballsy flying.

MikeD

Administrator
Staff member
Was down at one of the indian casinos located in Ak Chin last night, and prior to entering, I watched an Air Tractor dusting a field right next to Maricopa Road. Was cool to watch the night dusting operation with this guy flying down the fields at @50 AGL, pulling up just prior to the power lines, shutting off the landing lights, executing a 30/210 course reversal at @200 AGL and coming back down to @50 AGL just past the powerlines and dusting an adjacent swath. All at night, not too many ground references, spatial-D hell with the maneuvers combined with lights on/off ,no NVGs, and powerlines and vehicle traffic on the road to avoid.

Now THATs flying!
 

flyboy04

Well-Known Member
Cropdusting i believe is the most ballsy flying there is. I worked at a cropdusting service for a summer and i know that them pilots definatley earn their living. They would start flying at 6am and go at it until 9pm, sunday through sunday (weather permiting). Thats why i think so many accidents happen in that field, because of fatigue. Ballsy flying when your tired is just stupid in my opinion.
 

MikeD

Administrator
Staff member
They cropdust at night because some crops only bloom or open in the night hours and can only be fertilized then?
 

pilot602

If specified, this will replace the title that
Mike,

I'd imagine they do it at evening/night/early morning around here to avoid evaporation as much as possible. It's soooooo dry and hot here to do it in mid-day I'd bet at least 50% of the stuff would evaporate before it even hit the ground.
 

EatSleepFly

Well-Known Member
I think watching crop dusters when I was really little was the reason I've always wanted to fly. I grew up on a farm, surrounded by farms. Right across the street was a huge cornfield owned by the guy down the road, and he hired cropdusters to spray it. Nothing like the sound of a P&W R-985 coming from an AgCat blasting balls-to-the-wall overhead at 50 ft. AGL at 6am!
It pissed off the non-farming neighbors someting fierce, but my brothers and I used to sit outside and watch them every single time they sprayed. Sometimes we even had to watch from the barn, cause they were so close they'd still be dropping material when they pulled up over our yard!
 

TigerFlyer

New Member
I believe they dust at night to minimize the effects the wind has on application. Last thing a dusting company needs is a lawsuit from any adjacent property owner complaining of wind drift damage.
 

sbav8r

New Member
That's funny MikeD. I'll bet that ag pilot goes home and turns the TV on to catch a Discovery Wings show with an A-10 in a d@mn near vertical dive blasting off the 50mm only to pull up 200agl and bank violently to avoid ground fire. He probably sits there watching that and mumbles something along the lines of...
[ QUOTE ]
Now THATs flying!

[/ QUOTE ]
 

MikeD

Administrator
Staff member
[ QUOTE ]
That's funny MikeD. I'll bet that ag pilot goes home and turns the TV on to catch a Discovery Wings show with an A-10 in a d@mn near vertical dive blasting off the 50mm only to pull up 200agl and bank violently to avoid ground fire. He probably sits there watching that and mumbles something along the lines of...
[ QUOTE ]
Now THATs flying!

[/ QUOTE ]

[/ QUOTE ]

Now THATs funny! Who knows? Might be true.

But as I stood in the back of the parking lot of Harrahs and watched him (or her) do their stuff, I was damn impressed! Zero room for error.
 

Hootie

Old Skool
Its probably even ballsier that you think. I live in Iowa so I see ALOT of it and out here flying at 50agl is d@mn near class A to those kids. 20 feet is probably more like it.
 
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