Flyout to the Bahamas?

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Steven
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Flyout to the Bahamas?

Post by Steven »

This may be impossible to coordinate, but I thought I might as well throw in out there in case any other folks had similar thoughts. One of my to-do list flights is to the Bahamas. Is anyone else potentially interested in arranging some kind of Diamond fly-out?
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Re: Flyout to the Bahamas?

Post by gordsh »

In another year I will take you up on this for sure!
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gtmize
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Re: Flyout to the Bahamas?

Post by gtmize »

I'm interested and available all summer.
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wolfvoador
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Re: Flyout to the Bahamas?

Post by wolfvoador »

Welcome to the Bahamas, fellow Diamonders! I can arrange the inbound and local program here, as your local guy. Only, mid-July I start my around-the-world with the DA42, back only December...
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Re: Flyout to the Bahamas?

Post by dgger »

wolfvoador wrote:Only, mid-July I start my around-the-world with the DA42, back only December...
That sound's awesome. Did you plan your route, yet? Will you be doing the southern pacific route that I like to recall you mentioning?
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wolfvoador
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Re: Flyout to the Bahamas?

Post by wolfvoador »

dgger wrote:
wolfvoador wrote:Only, mid-July I start my around-the-world with the DA42, back only December...
That sound's awesome. Did you plan your route, yet? Will you be doing the southern pacific route that I like to recall you mentioning?
Yes, St.Johns-Azores-Europe-Russia-Japan-Philippines-Australia-NZ-Tahiti-Chile-Brazil-Nassau.
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Re: Flyout to the Bahamas?

Post by CFIDave »

A few suggestions (I've flown with a group of pilots/planes to the Bahamas for each of the past 5 years):

1. Avoid hurricane season. We've typically gone in February, which is a nice break from the cold up north.
2. Use Ft. Pierce (KFPR) as a launching airport to the Bahamas from Florida. It's the most northerly US Port of Entry you can return to from the Bahamas, has a great FBO (APP Jet Center) with its own restaurant, and the FBO is located directly next door to the US Customs facility. In my experience the US Customs folks at KFPR are much nicer than the ones at Ft. Lauderdale, for example. When I've gone with a group of other pilots/planes, we all met up at KFPR for an overnight stay before launching to the Bahamas the next morning.
3. Consider flying to one of the Out islands to stay at a resort not frequented by the hordes of tourists on cruise ships, and definitely stay away from Nassau. That's what's so great about having a small aircraft. Of all the places I've flown to so far, I prefer Fernandez Bay resort on Cat Island. It's about a 2 hour flight to/from Ft. Pierce. Other pilots really like Cape Santa Maria resort on the northern tip of Long Island. If you're mostly into scuba diving, there's Small Hope Bay lodge located on Andros Island (although I found it a bit rustic).
4. A DA40 is perfect for the trip, since you're rarely outside of gliding distance from a beach somewhere once you've covered the first 50-60 nm of water from FL. And unlike the Great Lakes, if you did have to land in the ocean, the water is relatively warm. :)
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wolfvoador
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Re: Flyout to the Bahamas?

Post by wolfvoador »

Agree with Dave (as always ;-) avoid the July-Oct (those months can be beautiful for flying and most of the time no/little wind, but difficult for planning weeks ahead as hurricanes strike with only a week/3-4 days advance notice). As spots, my recommendations for pilot-friendliness and beaches are MYCB and Fernandez Bay resort, MYLS Cape Santa Maria, or land directly at resort MYXC, a 2000ft rough gravel strip where I landed regularly my C182, but not the DA42. Also MYCH Hawks Nest where you park your plane next to the resort reception. Again, when some of you are ready, glad to help you out locally.
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Re: Flyout to the Bahamas?

Post by LTek1 »

Though it's not public and not generally publicized, the strip at the West End of Grand Bahama Island is operated by the resort there, Old Bahama Bay. While they have no services at the strip, the customs guy from the marina will roll over in a golf cart to handle your entry. That, of course, is predicated on staying there - but it's a pretty great little resort that doesn't get cruise or heavy tourist traffic. This is probably the closest runway to Florida, but you'd have to hop over to Freeport for fuel. Still, you could make it there and back without fueling, easily.

This has been on our to-do list for ages, just haven't found the time yet.
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Re: Flyout to the Bahamas?

Post by dgger »

wolfvoador wrote: Yes, St.Johns-Azores-Europe-Russia-Japan-Philippines-Australia-NZ-Tahiti-Chile-Brazil-Nassau.
Great routing! I wish you a safe and enjoyable trip. Please, keep me posted how things are going.
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