That last chapter in our vacation saga is, unsurprisingly, the trip home. I had spent much of this vacation looking for ways to extend it indefinitely and, as had happened during all such prior investigations, I failed to discover the necessary magic incantation. As a brief aside: I am available to be adopted by the right set of parents who are willing to support me in the style to which I want to become accustomed.
We left Jackson Hole airport in the late morning wishing that our local airport afforded vistas like this. The good news, of course, is that we don’t get snow in early October in Missouri, so I guess everything has trade-offs. (Click each picture to see a larger version.)
On this leg, we flew north along Jackson Hole, drinking in last sights of the lakes and Tetons. Winds at 12,000′ were 23 knots out of the southwest and with that much wind across the peaks, the ride was too bumpy at 11,500′ so we continued our climb up to 13,500′ before heading east. Even though it was still before noon, the air was warm enough that we were at a density altitude of 15,100′, right at the service ceiling of our plane; check out the display on the GPS. Yes, we used oxygen!
Flying across central Wyoming we got another lesson in what empty means. The land is gorgeous but there ain’t nothin’ out there.
We normally fly with the GPS map set to 40 miles from the top to the bottom of the screen. This is the only time I have ever seen the screen so empty.
The trip home was uneventful. We came all the way in one day with two stops for a total of 7.7 hours of flying. That’s a heck of a lot better than the 19 hours it would have taken to drive it.
Missouri even treated us with a nice sunset right around Kirksville.