Mooney Trip Clovis 2009

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My airplane parked at Clovis Municipal
Shot of Greg's Mooney M20C during the 45 minute test flight circling the Clovis airport to make sure everything was working correctly. Afterward the mechanic had to fix a slight oil leak, but everything else ran very smoothly.
Taken with my iPhone, which is not the best for zero light environments. This is the night flight from Clovis back to Dallas after dark. You can see I'm crusing at an altitude of 7,500 feet.
I'm just out of the Westover MOA, with Wichita Falls off to the left.
Not easily visible due to low light, I've pulled the power back to 19.5 inches of manifold pressure and 2350 RPM so I can keep behind Greg, who is breaking in his new engine by alternating the power settings.
About 30 miles northeast of Abilene enroute to Clovis, this is what the METARs in Dallas and Lubbock did not predict. No mention of rain or low ceilings. And yet here we were sandwiched between layers, dodging rain all around us!
When in doubt, head toward the sunshine. There should be less rain in that direction.
Just entering the Westover 2 MOA. The big fat line to the right is our course. It would have taken us right through the rain, so we deviated to the West, and now have to dodge another rain cell ahead of us. What you cannot see on the NEXRAD is the fact that there are broken low clouds down below us and a complete overcast just above us. It also shows us 203 miles from our destination, 1 hour 39 minutes from now, doing 122 knots ground speed against the wind. The CVN airport is at a bearing of 293 degrees.
Here's a wider shot of the instrument panel. You can see we're showing 140 mph indicated airspeed and we're at 6500 feet above sea level. THe GPS thinks we're at 6825 because it uses a spherical model of the earth's surface instead of barometric pressure.
MPEG Movies
GregsEngine.mp4 4.3MB July 25, 2009 2:58:16 PM GMT
MOV QuickTime Movies
IMG_0017.MOV 6.3MB July 25, 2009 2:11:04 AM GMT
IMG_0021.MOV 13.3MB July 25, 2009 2:52:08 AM GMT
Windows Media Player Movies
GregsEngine.wmv 9.3MB July 25, 2009 3:05:46 PM GMT

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