Hotels are requiring 4-5 night minmum stays and have jacked their prices to $250/night and up during that event. If you stay in Raleigh (about an hour away) the prices are much much cheaper and their are availabilities!
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Raleigh is about a 3-4 hour drive from Kitty Hawk. That's if you're really going fast and you don't hit traffic. When you hit traffic it's BAD. Lots of 2 lane roads for the last 60 or so miles. I would say it's just over an hour flight from Raleigh, but then you throw in a transportation and tie down and things get complicated.
If I were flying in I would park my plane in Manteo. Of course you'd have to do the mandatory touch and go at First Flight, but it's only a 30-45 minute drive to Nags Head and Kitty Hawk from the airport in Manteo.
There's also the option of parking in the Virginia Beach area. There are more airports and you're looking at a 60-90 minute drive to the OBX.
If you guys are serious about the-coast-to coast trip I can make some calls and see about getting a house. It's accross the street from the beach and I can usually get it for free.
I was thinking about it yesterday and I've realized a couple of things:
- I reeeeeeeeealy want to do this!
- School will be an issue (it ends the friday before... if I schedule it right I should be able to leave Thursday afternoon, giving us 5 1/2 days to get there.
- it's gonna take a lot to be able to save the estimated $5G for the all inclusive cost (food, hotels, plane, expenses)... it should be fine once I speak to Iain (ahem)!
- It obviously can be done safely... the problem is if it can be done in 5.5 days. A couple of days of bad weather is all it'll take to prevent us from getting there and the last thing I want to do is feel that dreaded pressure of wanting to make the trip in wx that I otherwise wouldn't fly in. I consider myself a good pilot and one who isn't prone to make those stupid mistakes, but then again no one really thinks they are...
Here are some initial thoughts (this is more of an 'at the most' deal...):
- 6-8 hrs / day taking between 3-4 days to get there (I will only have 5.5 days to make the trip should I decide attempt it)
- I will definately go in with the mind set of just seeing what happens... if we make it to NC on time it's a bonus, if not, we'll still get there eventually and hey we'll miss the crowds!
Maybe you guys should look into staying across the border in Virginia. It's a very short trip from the Norfolk/Virginia Beach area to Kitty Hawk. I used to drive down there all the time while I was stationed in Norfolk. I'm sure you might get a better price for a hotel.
Alright... I'm more or less set on doing this. I need to figure out many, many things to make it happen. I'm pretty much set on either a 172 or 172RG for the trip (probably the RG because it offers the best combo of performance, speed, and price at $90/hr; 40 hrs in which will cost $3600). My main concern is in planning / flying a route that will be most likely to keep me clear of any icing and weather. The suggestion of flying near the gulf to keep clear of ice sounds like a good one, but the farthest I've flown so far is only around 300 - 400 nm... so any additional advice on routing and weather is greatly appreciated.
Also I'd really appreciate it if there are any NC locals that care to give me an idea of the best places to stay and how to get to the event. Time is definately on my side in terms of planning the trip; but the hotels around there are filling up fast.
And finally, is there some kind of central website that I can go to for info on the entire event? Thanks!
I went down to the Oouter Banks for vacation a couple years ago. We flew into ORF, which was like a little over an hour drive. We stayed on the northern part, and since Nags Head is a little firther south, It will probably take a little longer.
It is not that I do not want to fly there, it is more the timeframe, cost and possibility taht creates a problem. If we can plan it where the we are set on all of those, then I am game. I will call you when I am back in Socal.
Me and another guy are thinking of renting a twin and flying down to Sun n Fun in April with it. It would be pretty cool if we get a formation of planes that could fly down there at the same time. Day dreaming here!
Iain, I think you've spent too much time on those already..
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Serious! I have the pleasure of sitting on one for 11 hours tomorrow!! But on this trip I am getting tons of bonus miles (150% more then miles flown), which considering my seat was such a reasonable price is not a bad deal!
Ed - My main concern is not getting there because the aircraft broke, bad weather, strong headwinds, etc. Also 2 weeks of hotels, food, etc is going to cost a bundle.
BTW you know the song you said you liked the other day (on 103.1), I found the single over here in the UK and scooped it up!