It was always going to be a busy weekend. Up to 100 Scouts and Guides of the Upper Hunter Valley would be expectantly waiting for us. For them, this was the culmination of more than a year’s planning and a tremendous amount of logistical coordination for an intense aviation-focussed weekend based at Scone Airport.
With a 4am start for some, we gathered at Camden with lots of anticipation, but with more than just a little apprehension after we downloaded the weather forecast. Saturday was going to be unseasonably hot -that didn’t present too much of a problem. The later 35knot gusts, severe turbulence and potential for a mountain wave east of the ranges certainly got our attention though !A few patches of fog at Camden allowed us some thinking time to explore all kinds of ideas to see how we could still deliver a safe and enjoyable activity program over the weekend to at least some, if not all, of the Troops. After thorough weather checks, destination checks and route planning, the decision was taken to position the aircraft at Scone Airport on Saturday morning, but no activity flights would be conducted until the wind satisfactorily abated.

Rod, Rolf, Rose, Richard, Kev, Mike, Steve and Graham quickly loaded up AHH, JBC and CFI to arrive into Scone before the forecast wind became too troublesome. Of course ‘Curious George’ – the Country Activity kit, quietly occupied the rear seat of AHH and kept us company all the way. With thirty knots on the nose, it was a slow but surprisingly smooth trip all the way. Some chose to depart direct overhead Richmond while others preferred the familiar YSBK lane to Cessnock and then up the valley past Singleton and Muswellbrook to Scone.

Upon arrival, it was clear Scone Airport had been transformed into tent city. Tents, marquees, pagolas, registration desks, mobile cool-rooms, trailer-mounted loos, BBQ’s, you name it – the Scouts & Guides were certainly well organised !………..and of course we were obliged to deliver the disappointing news – nobody would be flying today L

Undaunted, the District Leader, already had a busy program of Activity bases underway with the Joeys, Cubs, Scouts & Guides organised into groups undertaking all things necessary to achieve the various badge levels. We eagerly joined in, escorting the Troops on their adventures, answering questions, visiting open hangars and chatting to the local aero club members.