A dramatic "follow the weather" microlight tour visiting friends and family in Gatwick, Norfolk and the Lake District, taking in France and Wales for good measure. A bit of a photographic challenge to produce anything worthwhile through the near permanent haze layer below us, but I've tried. (Oh - a serious little footnote for any of my students reading this: despite appearances and my captions, we were at all times in sight of the surface.)
On our way - a gorgeous morning
Kim oversees refuelling at Sherburn, Yorkshire
Huge power stations send smoke up through the haze layer
Doing some trial flights at Titsey, near Gatwick, for Kim's son Stuart and his pals
Another trial flight into the wee private grass strip at Titsey
Dawn at Headcorn in Kent - time to pack up the tent and get going to France
Kent below us heading for the Channel - a little bit challenging for Kim doing her navigation - to put it mildly!
View not much different in that direction
Mid-Channel. What Channel?
Kim's perfect navigation prevails - Cap Gris Nez appears a mile beneath us
Ready to depart Abbeville after a fine French lunch and the mist had lifted
The Seine appears in the haze below as we head south-west
Final approach into L'Aigle St Michel in Normandy
Kim at L'Aigle with the trike tied down for the night
This will be a little upgrade from the tent last night
Heading north after the morning mist had lifted and the mighty Seine again
Base leg for the spectacular seaside, but hilltop, airfield at Eu Mers
Messing about at the deserted Eu Mers airfield on the north coast
Funny moment of the tour as I collapse laughing as Kim tries and tries and tries and tries to battle her chart into her kneeboard before we can get going
Map finally sorted and ready to depart gorgeous sunny Eu Mers
Yet another amazing strip of French concrete
Kim and the trike arrive to a sunny evening at St Omer
A wonderful meal in town and rainy night in the tent later, Kim and the trike are dwarfed by the massive German wartime hangar but ready to fly back to England
The Channel again at Flight Level 60. Er, what Channel?
Right on cue though, one mile over the White Cliffs of Dover
After flogging north east into a stiff headwind, we arrive at Beccles, Norfolk, beside Princess Anne's heliciopter as she attends a nearby function
Following the weather again, to Wales now, after a quick lunch stop at Wolverhampton
Heading for Snodonia
Awesome north-west Wales
Snowdon itself, just 12 weeks after we stood on top of it on a very different holiday
View south, approaching Caernarfon
Incredible scene from the base leg into Caernarfon
Kim chats up another helicopter!
Colourful Wales Air Ambulance poised for action beside us
Taxying for fuel using Kim-power!
I oversee refuelling while Kim distantly loses herself in more helicopters
Passing Snowdon again, on route to the Lakes
Arrival at Cark on Morecambe Bay and Kim makes arrangements for the evening with our fiends Sarah and Dan who have just moved to the Lake District
The million quid jump plane at Cark parachute club.
After a fab evening with friends, we pass by the northwestern Lakes on the way home