4 intrepid red Hondas (Red Arrows – topical, were thry the only RAF kites to grace the coronation?) met up in Aberdare for this flight of fancy on May 7th, with their pilots Alan, Jon, Craig and yours truly.
Setting off at 10am, we flew past the Welsh whiskey distillery at Penderyn (will have to land there for a tour one day) went smoothly, although flying across the moors, seen the worst weather of the day as the altitude seemed like flying low just under the clouds! A keen eye is required at this time of year, many newborn lambs have not yet reached top marks with their green cross code!
The A470 at Storey Arms is taken cautiously as the queues form to ascend Pen-Y-fan on weekends is quite ludicrous……
Onto Brecon and enroute to Builth Wells on the 4520, a lovely twisty, hampered by a couple of big rigs for a few miles. If only we could have targetted them as per operational flights 🙃🤣.
Onward north to Rhayader over the A470, a lovely fast open sweeping section.
This tour of the reservoirs was anti clockwise via the Ar Elan bridge.
We landed for a photo opp at Craig Goch dam, showing its reserve was full with impressive flows cascading the rugged sloping face to the Valley depths, which feeds ondown to the next.
The second was more than half empty, with bulging layered rock banks visible and its green islands seemingly on stilts 😳
Quite sad to see such lack of the wet stuff at this time of year! But then it’s only water for englandshire 🤣🤣
The runway slithers around, clinging to those layered banks akin a giant prehistoric python where mobile metal boxes frequently block progress on the pythons back (just move over and let the bikes through FFS! 😅)
So we landed at the Elan Valley visitors centre following a classic car club convoy, where bikers chocked up and got to the café food before the big rush 👍🏽
Note: Motorbikes are not charged for parking here 🏍😁🏍
Post refueling weight hampered takeoff, so taxi-ing through Rhayader was required but once at Crossgates, the ’44’ enables liftoff and good progress 🙂
Taking the 481 to Hundred House taxes the wing tips, so checking the edges later could be required 😉
Before returning to Builth, a left on the 4567 (yes thats real 🤣) is a delightful rural taxiway that can be quite flighty.
This leads south east to Boughrood passing the photogenic Lady Milford’s bridge, which of course we landed at.
Boughrood led us beautifully to Glasbury where our Red Arrows flew over the Wye.
Heading through Three Cocks and Talgarth, with more twisty Welsh ways engulfed we arrived at our final landing on the shores of the lake at Llangors where cake, coffee and ice cream hit their respective targets 😋
We debriefed our day and decided on our individual plots for home.
A great flight, with great company on great routes with of course the obligatory great Welsh dry weather ❤️🏍 roll on next month 👍🏽
South Wales branch HOC