After visiting Jim and Andy at their strip in Maine, I tagged some more public airports for my Maine project. I intended to land at Brewer, but Jim said it recently changed hands and I would need to call ahead.
Old Town (KOLD)
A two runway airport with nothing notable except an old guy who interrogated me about my flying habits. He weaseled and badgered me to do aerobatics. He wanted to know my airspeed and power settings at 50 foot increments on my landing glide path with no wind. All while calling me “girl” and standing between me and my cockpit.
Quiet class C airport. No landing or ramp fees for stopping by. I asked the lady at the desk what’s interesting to do nearby. She suggested going to Bar Harbor instead.
This grass strip takes its name from Griffin Oil. Runway 29, which I landed, is really steep uphill. I chose to depart on crosswind runway 04. Even it has a modest rise in the middle. There were a bunch of houses around the airport, but no office.
This grass strip is in the woods near a New England mill town. Five people ran out from a path in the woods to see me land. None of them fly, but they love seeing planes. They said there isn’t much to see in town; a whoopie pie festival next weekend. They suggested Greenville for its hiking trails. I departed with a fly-by.
I landed the paved runway, but they have a grass runway too. The grass was neatly mowed, taxi signs were bright yellow and red, and the fresh pavement dark. Even the welcoming hut next to the gas pumps proclaimed “Dexter” in peppy red letters. Yet, the adjacent collection of hangars was bent and weathered.
I wandered between the hangars to explore this mystery and to loosen my leg muscles. Each hangar was unique. The hangars got newer as I walked farther back. They have a second taxiway ready for more construction.
After taxiing out, I realized I was tired and should quit soon. Before flying the hour home, I needed gas.
Pittsfield used to have two runways. One end is now the ramp for their sky diving operation, and the other is a basketball court. The south end of the active runway terminates at a long canal from the Sebasticook river. Several amphibious float planes were parked on the ramp near a pile of floats. Four people carried bathing suits and towels across the ramp in the direction of the river.
I taxied around looking for the gas pumps. The chart had said Pittsfield had facilities. The jump plane pilot told me the av gas was in the shed next to the jet fuel. I found the shed, but I couldn’t find anywhere to insert a credit card. The FBO door was locked. No one answered when I knocked. Giving up, I checked my tanks again. They held plenty of fuel to fly to neighboring airports, but not enough to get home.
Another pilot in the field later told me that you can buy fuel when the FBO is attended. I didn’t learn it’s hours. The airport was busy when I departed — a jump plane announcing jumpers away in one minute, a student and instructor doing laps, and a pileated woodpecker and a turkey flying across the runway.
Central Maine (KOWK)
Central Maine has self serve gas. And they have self serve snacks. I bought a bag of salty chips and refilled my water bottle before my long flight home.