Sunday, February 21, 2010

Winging Our Way to Bremerton WA

With this wonderful stretch of good weather, Wayne and I decided to take 997 out for a much needed cross country trip. We wanted to try something new, so we decided to head south from Bellingham to Bremerton, Washington. It's only about an hour away, but long enough of a flight to get us back feeling comfortable in the air.

We departed Bellingham IFR for the practice, not because of the weather. We got the expected KIENO TWO departure southwest bound over Whidbey Island to the southern tip of Puget Sound. Whidbey is one of the longest islands in the United States with lots of nooks and crannies for boating fun. Seattle approach gave us a heading to line us up for a straight-in to Runway 19 at Bremerton, but once we had the runway in sight we cancelled IFR and circled to use active Runway 01.

One of the reasons we picked Bremerton was because of its nice big runway. It's 6000 feet long and 150 feet wide and in excellent condition. There are IFR approaches (if needed) and easy to use self-serve gas pumps. We only filled 997 to the tabs so that we have more flexibility for our next stop. We know it won't be far, but it might be a shorter strip, so the reduced weight will help our landing and takeoff performance.

Bremerton has something that is becoming rare at airport these days, an Airport Diner. We decided to stop for dinner before getting a taxi to town. It's definitely a place for pilots and locals alike. Friday and Saturday are prime rib nights and their fish and chips is an everyday special. We had the cod and it was wonderful and very reasonable. And I love the decor with model aircraft everywhere.

Wayne got us reservations at the Hampton Inn downtown next to the marina and ferry terminal. The cab fare was $27 plus tip, but it positions us perfectly for a walk-on ferry ride to Seattle in the morning. The fare from this side is free but the return is $6.90 for adults. Should be lots of fun before we start our second leg of the trip. -- Margy


  1. Have loads of fun, both of you! I love Whidbey Island and have stayed there for a week...lots to see and explore.

  2. You've definitely had great weather lately out West! I haven't flown in a small plane for years and years!

  3. I am so envious! What a great trip. 25 years ago we took the car ferry from Seattle to Bremerton and drove around the Olympic Pen. and stayed one night at Lake Quinault Lodge. When I was back in Seattle a couple of years ago, I looked longingly at all the ferries.
    Don't you just love Airport diners. Ian gets to go to all the local ones with his instructor in the Citabria. He is such a lucky kid. He thinks Cable airport has a nice old style diner. I remember going to a really nice but more upscale restaurant in Scottsdale at the airport when visiting my husband's cousin and his wife, Libby. Which brings me back to Pacific Northwest. Libby's much older sister was Jane Rule (a gay writer and trailblazer) who made her home on Galiano Island for many years - Canada being much more accepting of her orientation than the US.


We welcome your comments and questions. - Wayne and Margy