SandCastle Air

For the first six Gun Blogger Rendezvous, I drove from Tucson to Reno.  It’s about 15 hours each way, if you average 55MPH over the trip including stops for food and fuel.  I can do that in one shot, but that’s about my limit.  This year I got an interesting offer.  Danno from Sandcastle Scrolls was going for the first time – and Dan owns a plane.  A plane that cruises at 200MPH.  Specifically, this plane:

Pretty, isn’t it?  It’s a 1967 Cessna 310, with two Continental fuel-injected 471 cubic-inch six-cylinder boxer engines rated at about 260Hp each.  At 200MPH, they burn about 25GPH for an average fuel economy of 8MPG – not bad at that speed.  As Dan reported on his blog,

We fired up the #1 engine at 10:27 local and shut them down 3:26 later on the ramp at Carson City.  (note flight time is not the same as engine time.  Engine time includes taxi time at each end while flight time is from take off to landing.)

Beats the hell out of 15 hours.  Including idling, run-up, takeoff and landing, we burned about 91 gallons each way.  At well over $5/gal.  Ouch.  Still, the scenery from 8500 to 10,000 ft ASL is a lot nicer than it is at ground level over Nevada:

Trust me, the desert is MUCH prettier from the air.  And you don’t get to do this – our approach and landing at Carson City:
Dan’s been flying about 25 years.  He greased the landing at Carson, and did it even better on our return to Chandler.  Not a bad way to travel!  And without blogging, I’d never have gotten this chance.

Oh, and the speed?  Here’s the proof:

That’s from the GPS on my Blackberry.

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