Finally to Newfoundland...

Written by Mark Koneff
Sunday, May 24, 2015

Photo of Mark Koneff.On May 15 we finished Nova Scotia and returned to Bangor, ME, for a required inspection on N769. We were down 5 days, and every day was beautiful flying weather. Naturally, the weather began to deteriorate on Thursday, May 21—the day we left to return to Canada and resume the survey. We landed at Charlottetown, PEI, to clear customs, take on some fuel, and check weather before crossing the Gulf of St. Lawrence to Newfoundland. We had a nose wheel tire come off the rim on landing so that ended all thoughts of beating the weather across the Gulf. There is no maintenance at Charlottetown, so thankfully, the fine folks at Maine Aero Services at my home airport in Bangor drove the 6.5 hours (one-way) on the Friday before the Memorial Day Weekend to change the nose wheel and get us back online. That occurred just in time for the weather to really take a turn for the worse with cold temps, howling winds, cold rain and snow. So we stuck it out in Charlottetown for 2 more days, but we’re not complaining, Charlottetown and the Province of Prince Edward Island are both pretty fine places. This morning, Sunday May 24, we took advantage of a short weather window to make the trek up to Stephenville on the southwest coast of Newfoundland. Winds were strong when we landed but were blowing straight down the 11,000-foot runway that we landed on so not a major concern. They were too strong to do any surveying however, so my observer, Brad Rogers, and I took the opportunity to see some nearby coastline from the ground. I’ve included a few photos from the flight over and of the incredible scenery nearby at Cape St. George. I’ll report back after we’ve surveyed Newfoundland and can comment on conditions. Blessed Memorial Day to all and especially to our military families and vets!

Fishing vessels at port on Cape St. George, Newfoundland.  Credit:  M. Koneff, USFWS

Fishing vessels at port on Cape St. George, Newfoundland. Credit: M. Koneff, USFWS

Biologist, Brad Rogers, at Cape St. George, Newfoundland.  Credit:  M. Koneff, USFWS

Biologist, Brad Rogers, at Cape St. George, Newfoundland. Credit: M. Koneff, USFWS

Biologist/Pilot, Mark Koneff, at Cape St. George, Newfoundland.  Kittiwakes and other seabirds nest on the cliffs of the Cape.  Credit:  B. Rogers, USFWS

Biologist/Pilot, Mark Koneff, at Cape St. George, Newfoundland. Kittiwakes and other seabirds nest on the cliffs of the Cape. Credit: B. Rogers, USFWS

Cape Breton Highlands in Nova Scotia.  Credit:  M. Koneff, USFWS

Cape Breton Highlands in Nova Scotia. Credit: M. Koneff, USFWS

Southwest coast of Newfoundland near St. Andrews from 11,500 ft.  Credit:  B. Rogers, USFWS

Southwest coast of Newfoundland near St. Andrews from 11,500 ft. Credit: B. Rogers, USFWS