Trip 2005


In July 2005, Mike and René made a trip to France and Germany with the PH-SVG, a Piper Warrior of the 'Vliegclub Rotterdam'.

Our route:

  • Rotterdam - Dahlemer Binz - Trier - Haguenau
  • Haguenau - St. Die - Colmar - Haguenau
  • Haguenau - Schwäbisch Hall - Bayreuth
  • Bayreuth - Magdeburg - Lübeck
  • Lübeck - St. Michaelisdonn - Norderney - Ameland
  • Ameland - Rotterdam

Our route (schematic)

Departing from Rotterdam on Saturday, the first stop was Dahlemer Binz in the Eifel. While paying our landing fees, we learned that the restaurant was closed for renovation. Darn! That wasn't mentioned in the NOTAMs! After sharing a candy bar and a bottle of mineral water, we decided to fly to Trier for a decent lunch.

After a stunning approach over the Moselle river, we had a late lunch at Trier. Then, we departed for Haguenau, north of Strassbourg, to join our fellow Vliegclub members. We checked in in hotel Champ' Alsace, 150 meters from the field. In the evening, we had our traditional club dinner together with about 70 people, Vliegclub members and their families.


Mike fills out the logbook at Haguenau

On Sunday, the majority of the Vliegclub members headed toward the Alps. As we were in for a more relaxing day, we took PH-SVL, a Robin DR400, for a trip around the Vosges. After a low-pass at Sarreboug, we headed for St. Die.



Enroute from Haguenau to Sarrebourg

Impression of the Vosges

PH-SVG at Chambery

At St. Die, we made some touch-and-goes and a full stop landing. As usual around lunch time in France, the field was deserted and we had to postpone our desire for a decent lunch.

Final at St. Die

St. Die


St. Die

René performing the formalities

After a brief stop and pilot change in St. Die, we headed for Colmar and lunch. After departure at Colmar, we picked up the river Rhine for Haguenau. We had dinner at the restaurant at the aerodrome and watched our tired but satisfied club members return from their Alps trip.

On Monday, we left Haguenau for Schwäbisch Hall. During the approach, it appeared that our Bottlang map was outdated. A new runway 28 was deployed recently; Adolf Würth Airport showed to be a well-equipped business field with a comfortable lounge and excellent briefing facilities.

After a short stop, we headed for our destination for that day: Bayreuth.



Lonely PH-SVG at Bayreuth, parked for the night

Checking the plane's paperwork


After landing, we were 'invited' to the tower for a routine check of the plane's paperwork. Much to the surprise of the friendly controller, everything was OK. Shortly after having tied down the plane for the night and walking to the terminal building, a taxi arrived to take us to downtown Bayreuth. We were lucky to be one week ahead of the Bayreuther Festspiele, so hotel accomodation wasn't an issue. We stayed in the Accent Hotel, at the north edge of the city center. A nice and quiet hotel with free WLAN-access, which made preflight planning very convenient.

During the afternoon, we strolled around the charming town of Bayreuth. Enjoyed a Bayreuther Weizenbier on a terrace and saw Richard Wagner's home. The city park was very nice as well.


On Tuesday, the cloud base was rather low. We considered flying IFR to Magdeburg, but after detailed planning, Kaffee und Kuchen, the cloud base had lifted to allow for a VFR departure.



Mike prepares an IFR flight from Bayreuth to Magdeburg...

... but weather improved for a VFR flight

The flight to Magdeburg was uneventful. Magdeburg appeared to be a Soviet style airport, with equallly motivated personnel, in spite of 15 years of 'Deutsche Wiedervereinigung'. On the other hand, the young man in the pilot shop where we bought a map of northern Germany was very friendly and helpful.

After a late lunch at the nearby petrol station, we departed for Lübeck.


Lübeck is an old Hansa city. The city centre with its facade houses shows many similarities with old Dutch cities.

After having discovered the centre, we had dinner on the waterfront at the brim of the Altstadt.

Facade houses in Lübeck

On Wednesday, after a thorough security check and refuelling, we left the well equipped airport of Lübeck for St. Michaelisdonn. Enroute, we had to circumvent a few CB clouds, but were invited heartily with coffee on St. Michaelisdonn. With a headwind of about 30 kts, we departed for Norderney.



Baltrum - one island to go

Parked at Norderney

After a decent lunch at Norderney, we passed several East- and West-Frisian islands enroute for our destination - Ameland. Due to the stong headwind, the trip lasted quite long. After a long long final over the island of Ameland, luckily the wind during landing was just within limits (25 kts) and straight on the runway.

We tied down the plane and visited the airport manager. After a phone call to the hotel, we walked into the village of Ballum and to hotel Nobel.


The village of Ballum on Ameland


Thursday morning, the weather at Ameland was marginal: 30-35 kts winds and a cloud base of 600 ft. We waited at the airport for the weather to improve. The friendly airport manager provided us with coffee and moral support. The airport's PC with DSL connection proved to be very helpful in preflight preparation.

IFR Ameland - Rotterdam

Around 15:30, the weather had improved to a cloudbase of 1000-1200 feet, with 20-25 kts wind. We filed VFR, then IFR. Officially, we would start our IFR part at ENKOS, but in practice, after being airborne from Ameland, we were radar identified by Dutch Mil and were allowed to continue climb to FL050. We enjoyed the sun, being in VMC on top. Close to Amsterdam airport, we had to descend into the cloud layer and continued at 2000 ft for an ILS approach at runway 24 of Rotterdam. Back home again, after a very enjoyable trip.

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