I still think about it sometimes. I still remember the first solo I did on my flexwing - you open the throttle, the bird surges forward and as soon as it starts to move it wants to fly - you can feel it. It's in the rumble and bump of the seat, it's in the control bar... but you keep the bird on the runway to build up some serious speed so that when you finally do let it into the air - it flies well. Air speed means control to the pilot and you want as much as you can safely get when you are flying. When the aircraft lifts off it literally leaps up and ahead - and it's the biggest rush a fella can ask for. I got my star-crossed start with flex wings, but this was where I really wanted to go after I fell out of love with the Airbike:
That's a Chinook, (or a Shit Hook as the hangar wanks are prone to call it). It's a two place that flies well on the industry standard Rotax 503 or the 582. (I flew a flexwing trainer with an old Rotax 582 Blue Head and the damned thing was a rocket ship. It scared the chit out of me at the time...).
This is the pic I really like. This bird used to be made in kit form through a company in Vernon, BC. The world's best light sport aviators hail from that area, where the mountains create some interesting conditions for the intrepid light flier. A fella could do some serious ice fishing with a rig like that.
The company had a customer testimonial from none other than the National Geographic Society. Apparently they took one up north and because it is so small and easy to assemble - it fit into the ship's hold. Once they got within spitting distance of the north pole they dragged the airplane out, assembled it - and started flying the dauntless explorers and scientists hither and yon with it. It's the stuff of high adventure.
And - it's a tail dragger!
There's a company in Ontario that will build you one now for $30,000.00. I am going to see if I can sell one to BW. This is just the ticket for an enterprising explorer like him - it can land and take off grass and dirt with aplomb. Typically these planes only need about two or three hundred yards to land or take off so dipping into an abandoned church yard would be a snap. That guy gets into some interesting terrain and some air shots would be spectacular - especially in the fall.
Maybe he will buy me one too.