Kompress, CH-7 Angel, HeliSport, Igi Barbero, Josi Barbero, Claudio Barbero, Glenn Ryerson, Helicopter, Kit helicopter, home helicopter

Sport Helicopter & Pilot
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Turning world
Santaing w/An Angel
Page 2
This Page was created
December 15th, 1998

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Here I am just after landing at the first Xmas tree farm. I remember how Frank Robinson stressed the idea about hop out of your bird asap and guard/warn the onlookers about the dangerous spinning blades, especially when landing in a non aviation area. So, here I am just after stopping the kids n mom from approaching Nina until her blades were stopped. These kids seemed to love seeing Santa Claus landing while they were getting there Xmas tree. One more little tid bit to share I learned from Josi Barbero. Just in case you don't already do so. When parking your bird, wind your MR until the TR is vertical. This helps keeps walk rounders from causing damage to your TR as they may bump into it as they pass closly around the rear of your bird.

I didn't stay long, I actually felt quite silly in my red n white suit even thou I was having a good time. I finally got up the courage to walk up to there shop and buy a reef for our front door n stuff it under Nina seat. I had a few more onlookers as I arrived back to where I left Nina. I explained how I was actually not Santa Claus but his great grand son Glenn Claus. I expalined that since I was a member of the younger generation, I used a helicopter instead of a sled n reindeer. Well, the parents seemed to grin at my story n the kids just listened with all ears.

It was time, I excused my self, wound her up, hovered back to the far down wind corner of the field n lowered Nina's nose. During the previous week's visit, I had mentally arrived n departed as I was day dreaming/talking to Ray Peters. This being the case, Cing the situation n winds were still as they were the week before, I was able to depart with out over flying any buildings one or tree cutters.

From there it was a short flight over the next ridge an into a valley to drop in at a old collage buddy Don Denaro. After hovering about a hundred feet out his kitchen window n Cing no signs of life for 6o seconds or so, I realized he was not home. Since I didn't shut down or even set down, I didn't have the opportunity to snap a foto.

Because of his bottom of the valley location, I need to make a down wind T/O...... But that was not the only challenge for Nina. I was also forced to make a some what steep Up Hill n Down Wind T/O...... I could have done a Max Performance T/O into the wind, but I would have had to over fly a few houses at relatively low level........ Even thou Nina had the mussel and the T/O was uneventful as I easy gained altitude rapidly as she climbed the up slope of the hill. I now have second thoughts if I did the right thing or not. I now think it would have been better to make a Xwind T/O, this way I would have only had to make a 9o degree turn into the wind if problems reared their ugly head at that time...... Oh well, but things like this can n have killed.....................

Before I knew it, I was up to 1,ooo or so feet and headed east with the wind. I had both plenty of time n fuel n now was over the shyness of flying in my Santa suit.   Where should I go now I thought to my self....... Out of the gray of my knoggin I remembered another XMas tree farm that had LZs all around it just a few miles ahead of me. A few minuets later, all of a sudden I found the second XMas tree farm almost under the heels of my Santa Boots (white sneakers actually, I haven't sprung the $.$$ for the big black engineer boots or wide black belt Santa uses). No worries mate, the Angel autos like an controllable oak seed. I lowered the collective n set up my glide as I watched the gages as I over shot the tree farm than made a slow right autoing turn/180.  I set Nina down about 2oo feet from where all the tree selling was done, but only friction down the collective n decreased the RPM so I could wave at the on lookers. There wasn't one person out of the 5o or so there that didn't wave back with a big grin on there puss. That was enough for me, I wound her up again, this time holding my cyclic in-between my knees in order to wave again....... The reaction was exactly the same except now a few of the people that had waived before were now snapping fotos or videoing Nina with santa at the controls.

I could not resist doing a rear ward departure, I know I shouldn't................. I start out by raising the collective just a tad to give the tail boom's stinger a little clearance. I than add a little rearward cyclic n just as Nina starts to move backwards I add a little left peddle. Now the trick I still have to prefect 1oo% is that one needs to move/hold the cyclic in the same relative position as the helicopter/you rotate....... Any way, I did an OK one n before I knew it I had finished the 180 turn and just continued my acceleration to 45 MPH before I climbed away from the ground n out of the field.

Know knowing exactly where I was, I only climbed to 5oo feet because I was going to drop in on another buddy just down the sky/road a piece, George Wakefield. George is perhaps my longest length friend. I remember we actually met prior to me getting my drivers license which was in 1965 when were both in the Civil Air Patrol. George owns a biz that I often patronage called "The Computer Doctor" with his partner Pat Fallon seen below.

To my surprise, as I was climbing out of Nina's cockpit I saw George n Pat walking up to me where I landed across the street from their store to greet me. I later asked how they knew it was me. George grinned a tad and said "when I hear the slapping of a helicopter's blades that sound like they are powered by a weed wacker off in the distance, I know it is you".

Since I had hovered to about 2oo feet from the road before I parked Nina, naturally I got lots of  honks n waves to Santa. However, again, I didn't stay long. I started Nina's 582 n wound up the blades, departed relativly quickly because again Santa departing in a helicopter was stopping traffic along this rural road.

This time I had plenty of room to T/O as you can C behind us in the foto above. However, about 3/4 of a mile from T/O at about 8oo feet AGL, as I turned to the south, I noticed a XMas Tree Farm just ahead of me. I had forgotten the tree farm closest to my home.  I flew on past and did a 18o and again landed near the action at this tree farm. Once again I set down just long enough to give a Santa wave to all the children than depart.

My flight home was once again interrupted with the knowledge of too much free time n plenty of fuel. I kept heading east n dropped in at N53/Stroudsburg Pocono A/P. The owner of the A/P is the guy Bob Strenz who introduced me to the Angel in 1992. I hovered over to his office n maintained 3 feet AGL out side his office window, but he wasn't in........ I than air taxied across the run way and set down looking for another familiar face or two...... Any way, I chatted with a couple stiff wing pilots than headed off home.

The flight home was un eventful except for the 27o auto I did into my home field. I have yet to do a full down, but I can feel it comming someday when there is a westerly breeze to add a little fudge factor to my first un accompanied by a CFI full down.

Seasons Greetings to you all

Glenn, host of SHnPGIE


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