Flight Report

Jerry Marstall

Yesterday was too good not to fly somewhere.  I discovered a Mid-Georgia Canard-Wing fly-in going on at Perry, GA (KPXE).  Doing my due diligence, I called to make sure the fly-in was still a go.  They were proud to say that it was. They had been closed since April to have the runway resurface and this was their first weekend event.  So I cranked up the Q and headed south.  16G21 here in the valley for departure.  Bumpy until reaching the ridge and then smooth as silk for the rest of the way.


About 60 miles from PXE, Atlanta Center informed me that PXE was closed.  Humm!  Surprised. (another reason to use flight following) The controller then told me that a plane had just landed gear up.  Bad for the pilot/plane, also bad for the brand new runway surface.  I chose to proceed on to PXE just to fly over and take a peek.  Sure enough, a twin was about 1500’ down the runway, partially on the runway.  It looked like it was going to be a long day.


So I decided to divert on to a place called Montezuma (53A), intending to have lunch and wait it out for a while.  On downwind, I noticed the 5,000’ runway was mostly covered in dirt, and the buildings alongside the runway were in serious disrepair with junk cars, etc all over the place.  Of course, no one came up on unicom.  The place looked like Montezuma’s Revenge.   The charts and Atlanta center both confirmed that it was an open/operational airport.  Broke out from the downwind and headed for Butler (6A1). 


It's been 2.5 hrs and I was ready to stretch.  Butler - quaint little place.  Only one hangar, which was off the far end of the 5,000’ runway. And a lonely fuel pump about mid-field with nothing around it.  No signs of life.  Upon reaching the far end, I taxied past a little grove of trees and a small gathering of people were standing in the shade of a tree by a Pawnee and 3 parked gliders.   No waving, just staring.  I was beginning to think I had landed in the Dueling Banjos, Dukes of Hazard community.


 As it turns out, there is a glider club there.









There was another dozen gliders and trailers outside.  One of the folks drove me to Subway to get a sandwich and I sat under the tree with a couple of the Dukes and watch three launches.  None of them ever returned – Humm!  Stopping at small airports always offers fun experiences.


Upon checking back with PXE, the plane was still on the runway so I taxied to the lonesome fuel pump and refueled for the trip home.  While doing the cockpit checks, I saw this on my Hobbs meter. 

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