Travel Report of GOING DUTCH WEEKEND of UPL-AOPA
Date: July 7th-9th 2017
Route : Luxembourg – Texel (EHTX) – Enschede/Twente (EHTW) – Genk (EBZW) – Luxembourg: 485 NM
Theme: Good atmosphere- good friends !
- (Electrical) Biking at Dutch North Sea island of Texel
- Joining international AOPA international pilot’s fly in at Enschede/Twente with entertainment program for young and old
- International pilot’s BBQ at Enschede /Twente airfield
- White night at party town Enschede
Organizer: Peter Sodermans, board member UPL-AOPA
|N – 404 SS
Day 1: Friday July 7th, 2017
5 pilot crews confirmed their participation at the July 2017 fly out we organized for UPL-AOPA. To coordinate activities, a whatsapp group was set up amongst participants. That proved to work out very well as it allowed a smooth communication.
The weather outlook was reasonably good for most of the traject bringing us from Luxembourg and Trier to Texel on Friday, July 7th…. although the last part north of Amsterdam proved to be more marginal VFR, which caused that one crew cancelled their participation.
The ceiling proved indeed to be quite low and we had to descend to some 1000 feet above the lake Ijssel. Landing went smoothly in Texel. We expected much of this fly-out as the previous edition, in 2016 was cancelled due to poor weather.
Finally, three crews landed safely in Texel. The fourth plane, with Stefan Stefansson as PIC, skipped Texel and decided to fly directly to the AOPA fly in in Twente. No worries.
Sweeping white-sand beaches, wildlife-rich nature reserves, sun-dappled forests and quaint villages are among the highlights of Texel, the largest and most visited of the Wadden Islands. About 3km north of the coast of Noord-Holland, Texel (pronounced “tes-sel”l) is 25km long and 9km wide. Our plan was to either enjoy a relaxing day at the beach or discover the island per (electrical) bike.
We were lucky with the hotel reservation at the airport hotel of Texel. Sleeping with views of your plane is a great feeling 🙂 But prior to go to bed, the hotel owner, Walter Schijn arranged us a seafood dinner at the harbour of Texel. The food proved to be E X T R A O R D I N A R Y . The pictures below say it all
Day 2: SATURDAY July 8th , 2017
Saturday morning, a weakened rain front was passing and we decided to alter our plans. With our bikes, all of us went for discovering the island of Texel. B I G fun !! We had mixed feelings as we deemed that our stay on Texel was not long enough.
Guido and Dani Peterzelka and their daughter Livia decided to extend their stay on the island. Smart decision, next year we’ll plan a longer stay on the islands
In the afternoon, two crews flew 90 NM to the newly re-opened airfield nearby Enschede airport (Twente), where the Dutch AOPA organizes their international Fly-In. We arrived a bit late for the seminars.( about Mobile flite deck, short field landing, etc….) they have been organizing. We enjoyed watching planes and discussing the dutch AOPA team, who did a marvelous job of getting their airfield nearby Enschede ready for general aviation.
But on the upside, there was a wide variety of delicious food and drinks from local suppliers and some live music band on the airfield. The fly inn of AOPA Netherlands was successful and they had various stands of interesting aviation companies, such as aircraft brands, maintenance and training. Our UPL-AOPA crew card proved -once again – to be very helpful as UPL- AOPA Members got free access and did not have to pay any landing fee.
We missed Stefan Stefansson, who just left when we arrived. No worries, our fly-out are entirely free, we create a program, but every pilot is absolutely free to adjust it to whatever suits him best. The other crews jumped into the nightlife of Enschede with plenty of bars in the city. Such a nice city in the summer. We were welcomed by Essent director Maarten Top and his lovely wife Silvia. Typical Dutch with terraces and bikes everywhere. Such a wonderfull evening.
Day 3 SUNDAY July 9th, 2017
On Sunday morning we enjoyed a relaxed morning and Guido Peterzelka and his family who stayed behind in teasing us via Whatsapp as they decided to go for a swim in the sea and stay until Sunday evening in Texel.
The Enschede airport is only open since a while for general aviation. It used to be a military airport until recently and thus heavily protected. But the communication worked well and we managed to get access again to our planes as the whole AOPA NL delegation left the evening before.
From there, we enjoyed a nice summer flight back to our home base in Luxembourg and Trier. We were all back home by Sunday afternoon, exept Guido Peterzelka and his family, who was still swimming in the sea of Texel. Guido enjoys the good life. His Beach Bonanza flies up to 150 knots, way faster than our Cessna 172, who cruises the skies at some 100 knots.
They finally stayed until the evening hours in Texel and only flex on Sunday evening back to Luxembourg. With Flight radar 24, the other participants as well as Reinhard Krommes were following his flight as weather was getting a bit stormy in Luxembourg. Via whatsapp, we were sending him live weather updates as the thunderstorm south of Luxembourg got very nearby. But end good, all good. Guido landed shortly after sunset on Sunday evening.
Some thoughts for the 2018 edition: Texel was definitively a great place, in July 2018 we’ll maybe go to discover Ameland. We’ll ensure to have a more relaxed program, so we can enjoy biking around the island for some more time. Biking and flying , a great sportive combination !
I have created a link for you to see and download some pictures to insert in the article
Article written by:
Peter Sodermans for UPL-AOPA