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Dutch flying internet bloggers meeting at JUIST (EDWJ)

A couple of times a year, a group of flying Dutchmen who also publish a blog about their hobby meet face to face (incidently, Cpt. Willem van der Decken is not one of our members...).
This time I was actually able to fit the event into my schedule. The fly-in was to take place at JUIST, a German island, one of many that decorate the coastline of The Netherlands, Germany and

Denmark... At the end of the day I was the only one to show up on JUIST, read on to learn what had transpired:

Bad visibility grounds pilots based in NL

This FlyBlog-4 fly-in would have been the first time that I meet most of the other members face to face. Unfortunately, bad visibility in the northern part of the Netherlands grounded the pilots based there.
Martijn Moret, flying in from Rotterdam (EHRD) and Frank van Riel, flying in from Lelystad (EHLE), although based more to the south, had to abort their attempts and divert to their alternates.
After a recent crash of one of his club's Piper Tomahawks, Rob Baggerman was forced to abandon his plan to attend this event as PIC. Instead he was offered a seat by Guus Poorte, who was also going to be accompanied by my brother Marcel Zwakenberg.

Being kept in the loop

Pretty early in the morning, Marcel called me to inform me about a low visibility issue in the northern provinces of The Netherlands. They were to depart from Hoogeveen (EHHO), which happened to be in the midst of an almost stationary patch of dense fog.
I thought about it for a couple of seconds and decided to take off from Rendsburg (EDXR) nonetheless. The weather in my area was simply too good to cancel my flight.

Optimal weather in northern Germany

After taking off and turning to the WSW, it took only some 14 minutes to reach the coastline. I crossed the Elbe estuary and headed for Neuwerk, an island NE of Cuxhafen. From there, I headed directly for JUIST (EDWJ). This track put me over water for the remainder of the trip, however, since most of the isles to my left have an airstrip and because each of these isles have a nice sand beach on the northern side, at my altitude there was plenty of opportunity to glide to a landing spot in case of an emergency.

After about an hour, I put my bird down on JUIST, RWY 08. The northern traffic circuit was interesting in that at 600' altitude and most of it over open water, the visual perspective was unlike anything I had experienced before.

After my landing on Juist, I again had a couple of phone conversations with Marcel, the big picture being that the fog was retreating all right, but ever so slowly. So slow in fact, that around 13:15LT the Netherlands-based fraction decided to cancel the event.

Twenty minutes later I was airborne again and on my way back to Rendsburg. This time my track was to the south of the string of islands, so that I could take pictures, some of which are shown below. All of the aerial shots - with the exception of one - were taken from a cruise altitude of 4.500'.

Too bad for the other FlyBloggers that they couldn't attend. I for my part had two wonderful flights. Hopefully, next time all of you will be there...!

D-EFOD parked on JUIST

O.k. guys, this is what a FlyBlog-4 line-up would have looked like. There was plenty of places left for all of you. Hopefully, next time we'll get pictures with all of us attending!
I flew in with D-EFOD, a PA28-140 shown in front of this line-up.

JUIST (EDWJ) Tower & Restaurant

The restaurant and visitor area face south. As I still had some catching up to do with reading stuff for my professional activities and because of the rather bright sunshine, I decided to enjoy my cappucino's and do my reading inside...

Norderney City & Harbour

This is the first picture I took after departing from JUIST (EDWJ) on my flight back to Rendsburg (EDXR). This is the only aerial shot NOT taken on an altitude of 4.500', as I was still in climb configuration.
Longer ago than I care to remember, I once visited this harbour during one of my many sailing yacht delivery trips.

Langeoog City & Harbour

Looking from south to north, this is what Langeoog looks like from 4.500'. Directly right adjacent to the area shown in this picuture, there's also an airfield with a 600m paved runway.

ACL container carrier inbound for Hamburg harbour

Flying in clear skies on top at 4.500', some encounters simply need to be photographed, at least for someone with a nautical background like I have... :)

Neuwerk Island, NW of Cuxhafen

To the north west of Cuxhafen, this island was the last one before crossing the Elbe estuary. It must have been more than ten years ago that I visited Neuwerk by foot, crossing the muddy estuary on a trek that began to the west of Cuxhafen...

Landfall Schleswig-Holstein, looking south

After crossing the Elbe estuary, I crossed the coastline south of Friedrichskoog. This is a view to the south. On the right side of this picture you can see the Elbe river, as it meanders down from Hamburg.

Landfall Schleswig-Holstein, looking north

Taken from the same position as the picture above, this is a view to the north, showing the Meldorfer Bay.

Update - new FlyBlog fly-in scheduled

A new FlyBlog fly-in is scheduled for November 4th. Hopefully, on that day the weather will not intervene and the entire FlyBlog team meets eye to eye!

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