Hither and Yon
Here is yesterday’s flight. Planned to make it to Ohio to visit my mother. Made it to just east of Mt. Mitchell in North Carolina and then ran out of inflight visibility and ceiling. Picked up an IFR clearance at 8000 ft. Above the clouds was fine in clear blue skies but I’d have to descend through 5000 ft of clouds in temps below zero up north. Ice cube city for the airfoils which don't fly well with contaminated surfaces! So I came back home. Found the realistic service ceiling in a mostly loaded Tomahawk...at 9000 ft I could climb at 200 fpm maybe. The 115 HP was working hard. This time the GPS navigated the RNAV turn reversal at 6J4. All good...here in SC!
My lessons: 1) Sometimes conditions are worse than forecast. 2) Air Traffic Control can be helpful when needed (kudos Asheville Approach!). 3) Do your preflight planning so you know what the possibilities are if things don't go as planned. 4) Get your instrument rating...sometimes you may need to spend some time in the weather with no ground references to avoid controlled flight into terrain (CFIT). 5) Stay away from cumulogranite clouds. 6). Make the safe call early, not late. 7
) Get your mother to move south!