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Mike--N50ET-MT-PropsSaturday, August 24, 2013
I will be departing from Aiken, SC tomorrow morning at 8:00 am, so as you can imagine, there are a lot of little loose ends to tie up before departure.  For an update of my scheduled stops, please click on the trip itinerary.  N50ET is ready to go and equipped with the new MT propellers. I'd like to thank the team at CTS for hanging with me to have every last little detail addressed, and they certainly have presented me with a perfect airplane. At this stage, I would like to make mention of some people who have supported me on the trip, unsolicited, through their kindness and generosity. I received a very kind phone call from Mr. Dave McCredie, of Piper McCredie Insurance, earlier in the week followed by a very generous donation. Creighton Scarpone from Garmin, who we met at the MU-2 fly-in, organized for Garmin to support me with a worldwide database on all installed and portable equipment for the around the world flight. In addition, I have received support from Standard Aero and Global Aerospace, and in particular, I'd like to thank Mr. Tom Chappell of Chappell Smith & Associates, who has supported in numberous ways. BaseOps has been a tremendous support and has worked Mike-and-Anneclosely with my assistant, Leah Kadar-Hodd, whom I'd also like to thank, as they've ensured that all the little details are covered--everything from Visas, accommodations, transportation, handling, fuel releases, etc. so I wouldn't have to worry about them.

I also want to thank Air 1st Aviation employees Jeanne Lowther and Ricky DuBose for their hard work and support. And of course, all of this would not be possible without the backing and blessings from my lovely wife, Anne. (in photo on the left). Anne enlisted the help of Jeanne and Leah to organize a wonderful--and very much a surprise--Bon Voyage party at the Aiken FBO last Sunday.  

My first stop tomorrow will be to pick up Mike Collins in Frederick, Maryland.  To track our progress, you can go to https:share.delorme.com/MichaelLaver which will be updated every 10 minutes while we are in flight.

Monday, July 15, 2013
I flew to Houston, Texas for a couple days last month to meet in person with the team at BaseOps. It was sure nice to meet face-to-face with the people who will be preparing my flight plans and weather briefings, and it is quite comforting to think that I may actually “know” the person I may be speaking to when I’m half-way around the world, multiple time zones away in case of any difficulties. I sat down with the Vice President of BaseOps, Michael Ouellette, as well as a team of Meterologists and Flight Planners and reviewed each and every leg of the trip. By the time I left, I felt very good with the route. Of course, even with the best laid plans, we are still finding the need to fine tune and tweak the schedule almost weekly. 

The latest changes have come as a result of the coup in Egypt. With likely ongoing civil unrest during the period of my flight, we decided it would be best to avoid stopping in Luxor (and Egypt altogether for that matter). I guess the Pyramids will have to wait. Instead we are looking at some alternates that will actually shorten the flying distance through the Middle East. 

I have also decided to eliminate the stop to Christmas Island in Australia, because they have movement fees of up to $900/flight depending on the time you arrive. It’s still cheaper than what I will have to pay in Nagoya (which we are still trying to determine at this stage). I will also be cutting out my stop to Perth and flying from Bali, Indonesia into Broome, Australia and then Yulara. Yulara is the home of the largest monolith in the world, Ayers Rock. Then on to Latrobe Valley Airport in the state of Victoria, which is the place where I did my initial flight training 45 years ago.

Today, I’ve test flown N50ET after it’s final 100/200/1year inspections prior to my departure. My plan is to fly N50ET to Green Bay for the MU-2 fly-in and back to Aiken just to put 2 legs on it following maintenance. I look forward to seeing everyone up at Jet Air.

Thursday, June 6, 2013
We are moving right along with the Around the World flight preparations, and as part of that process, we have selected the enthusiastic team at BaseOps to assist with the trip planning. It's exciting to work with such a dedicated group of people who have demonstrated a sincere interest in our trip. With their recommendations, I have tweaked the flight route a bit to ensure the best route given my desired stops and N50ET's capabilities. Please refer to the map on the Around the World-N50ET page to see the updated route, which now includes stops in New Castle, England, Christmas Island, Australia, Lapu-Lapu in the Philippines and Taipai.

N50ET is now equipped for long-distance communication with a King KHF-950 high frequency transceiver, installed by Joe Megna, Jr. at Jet Air Corp. I am also hoping that N50ET will be completing the trip with the new 5-bladed MT Propellers as well, provided the US STC is issured prior to my departure.

We're also excited to have the support of such a great organization as the AOPA by including Mike Collins (Technical Editor of AOPA Pilot magazine) to accompany me on the trip. Mike is sure to have a lot of great photography and editorials for all to enjoy. I flew N50ET up to the AOPA headquarters in Frederick, MD a couple of weeks ago to meet with Mike, and we were able to get some great air-to-air shots.

The flight is jut over two months away, with the departure date set for Monday, August 26. We will be travelling a little over 3 weeks to end back in Aiken, SC around September 18.
Friday, March 1, 2013
I picked up a Marquise from Victoria Falls, Zimbabwe that I am ferrying back to the US. I departed from Victoria Falls on Wednesday, stopped in Luanda, Angola for fueling, and then flew on to the lovely island of Sao Tome where I spent the evening.  Thursday was a very long day with stops in Kano, Nigeria and Tamanrassett, Algeria.  It was a long hike from there to get to Malaga, Spain, and I was glad for the overnight stop!  I departed early this morning with a quick stop at Cork, Ireland for fueling and then flew into Reykjavik, Iceland where I'm staying at the newly rennovated Icelander Hotel Reykjavik Natura where I have a room overlooking the Marquise on the runway!

This trip has given me a great opportunity to test out the Delorme In Reach 2-way communicator.  It has tracked my flight every 10 minutes since I departed from Victoria Falls.

Tomorrow I depart early for Narsarsuaq, Greenland with a stop in Goose Bay, Cananda and then into Bangor, Maine, before getting back home to Aiken, SC.  There has been a lot of incredible scenary on this journey, and I've met some very nice people along the way--I'll provide more details and photos when I get back home.

If you would like to see my flight path and the rest of my journey back to Aiken, SC, please feel free to visit my Mapshare page at 


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