Anyone flown out of Key West/EYW?

Discussion in 'Hangar Talk' started by cbmontgo, Jun 24, 2012.

  1. cbmontgo

    cbmontgo Pre-takeoff checklist

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    I am down there on vacation in a couple of weeks and am thinking about renting a 172 to do some sightseeing with the wife. There is a little flying service that rents the S models on the field.

    Has anyone here flown out of KEYW? Any cool areas to go or recommendations?
     
  2. Threefingeredjack

    Threefingeredjack En-Route

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    I guess it depends on the restrictions of the rental agreement, but any trip along the Keys is a beautiful thing. I am going to assume that extended overwater flight will be banned, so one of my favorite spots in that area, FT. Jefferson in the Dry Tortugas will be out of the question. Just flying up the Keys enjoying the water and reefs will be a neat treat if you have never flown over that sort of terrain before. I was stationed at CGAS Key West for a tour in the late 90s.
     
  3. EvilEagle

    EvilEagle Cleared for Takeoff

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    It's going to be hotter than 3 hells down there in a couple of weeks, so plan accordingly. Consider sunrise instead of sunset flights and watch out for the balloon if you fly up the keys much. It's a nice flight if you haven't done it before, nothing specific to go see unless you want to cross over to the dry tortugas. That's pretty cool.
     
  4. seand

    seand Pre-Flight

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    It's a quick hop up to Everglades City if you're interested in seeing the 'glades. Naples and Marco Island are just a tiny bit further and have a totally different feel from Key West. On the Miami side, Hollywood is a pretty good stop with a short taxi ride down to the shopping and beach.

    Key West itself has a tendancy to be windy and isn't aligned to the prevailing winds. They have plenty of runway though. And plenty of traffic... on one of my landings I was advised to use caution for two fast moving jets in formation. The approach ATC there is fantastic though so that's no worry.
     
  5. cbmontgo

    cbmontgo Pre-takeoff checklist

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    Very cool; thanks guys.
     
  6. Henning

    Henning Ejection Handle Pulled

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    Island City Flying Service is the only game in town. 305 296 5422. If you see more than one runway, don't land, that's NAS Boca Chica.:D you either want the runway in front of you or behind you depending if you're east or west facing inbound.
     
    Last edited: Jun 24, 2012
  7. cbmontgo

    cbmontgo Pre-takeoff checklist

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    Thanks, that is who I spoke to earlier today.

    Looks like you pretty much have to make an immediate turn to the northwest or southwest when departing VFR on Rwy 9 to aviod the NAS? Even radial 082 is unuseable from what I saw on the enroute low chart; it shoots right over the NAS.

    This is also interesting: "RESTRICTED AREA R-2916 LCTD 14 NM NE OF ARPT HAS STROBE-LGTD AND MKD BALLOON AND CABLE TO 14000 FT".
     
  8. Captain

    Captain Final Approach

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    There's a balloon on a cable. They use it to float a radar antenna up to look for boats and crap coming over from cuba.
     
  9. Henning

    Henning Ejection Handle Pulled

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    It depends on the activity level at Boca Chica, transitions along US1 were the norm when I lived there. Stay on the Atlantic/Carribean side (keep the islands off the right on the way down, left on the way back) of US1 and you'll miss the tether for the blimp if they have it flying.
     
  10. Garthur

    Garthur Pre-takeoff checklist

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    The wife and I were there in 96. Just tell the instructor that you what to do a little site seeing while doing the check out. In and hour, you can see most of the sites. The real fun of Key West is the flying down there from the north and all the deserted islands you fly over going south. We could see hundreds of little islands on the gulf side. Some of the islands would have boats near the beach with people on the beach with grills setup and party's going on. Some of these partys looked really good!!;)
     
  11. gismo

    gismo Touchdown! Greaser!

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    Well, you could fly to Cuba! Seriously though there's not a lot to see along the keys but that area is pretty unique. Someone already mentioned the tethered balloon and you definitely want to avoid that. Another possible issue if you head towards SW Florida (Everglades City, Marco etc) is that from KEY you need to either head east for a while (keeps you closer to land too) or file a DVFR flight plan because a straight shot might take you into the ADIZ. FWIW Everglades City offers airboat rides and they're famous for the stone crab shops. You can usually get a ride from the airport to town if you're going to a restaurant.
     
  12. Henning

    Henning Ejection Handle Pulled

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    You'll notice that the 'locals', even those flying twins take the island route up and down. The other route leaves you in the position of becoming a 'swamp snack' for a good while....;)
     
  13. gprellwitz

    gprellwitz Touchdown! Greaser!

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    I don't know if the rental place will allow it, but it's only a short hop over to the Bahamas, and there are a bunch of places there to check out.

    At KEYW, I've had them constantly vector me towards a C-130 heading into Boca Chica after I had called it in sight. Still not sure what was up with that.

    And, if you're really lucky, you will be there while the Blue Angels are doing a performance at Boca Chica. Leave the plane on the ground, go to the base, and enjoy the show! IIRC, it was November, though, the year we went.
     
  14. Henning

    Henning Ejection Handle Pulled

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    Key West to the Bahamas is long ways, much closer from FXE where there are a few planes you can rent to the Bahamas. The problem is a few years ago the Bahamas changed the rules about fixing planes there. If one of you planes broke down over there you could just fly over a mechanic with a few parts and fix it. Not any more, now you need to use a Bahamian mechanic/shop and pay full duty which can be from 25%-250% depending on the what/where & who you are involved with.
     
  15. gprellwitz

    gprellwitz Touchdown! Greaser!

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    Just flyup to Marathon and cross there. Yes, FXE is a shorter crossing. Didn't know about the new MX rules.
     
  16. flightwriter

    flightwriter Pre-takeoff checklist

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    Is that the same aerostat that claimed a C182 back in 2007?
     
  17. Henning

    Henning Ejection Handle Pulled

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    It's the only one since they got rid of the other one in the mid 90s. I think the thing has been there since WWII.
     
  18. gismo

    gismo Touchdown! Greaser!

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    If you're headed to/from the Miami area that makes sense but between KEY and X01 or MKY it's not terribly practical to remain over the keys most of the way. And I think I'd rather ditch in the Gulf than drop into the Everglades.
     
  19. Captain

    Captain Final Approach

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    I was going to leave that alone, but since you brought it up...yeah, I've never heard of a twin pilot going way out of the way to avoid a little water. Especially shallow warm water, ie. KEYW to KFMY or such.
     
  20. Henning

    Henning Ejection Handle Pulled

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    It happens a lot, but then most of us were just popping up to Tamiami or FXE to get some parts or supplies or drop someone off for a real flight at MIA or FLL and taking the islands rather than cutting the corner is no big diversion and sets you up for the beach run up the coast.

    BTW, Who the hell goes to Ft Meyers? You into the blue hair and supper at 3?:lol:
     
  21. alfadog

    alfadog En-Route

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    Fly over to Marathon KMTH on the weekend and the FBO provides free shuttle service. Go to Keys Fisheries. Tip the driver.

    http://www.keysfisheries.com/

    Everglades City X01 was mentioned. One of my favs. Any of the restaurants in town wil pick you up no charge except a tip to the driver. Or you can rent bikes from the FBO for $5 each per day.

    Doesn't really apply but I flew in to KEYW last Nov. We had the scooter rental folks pick up up at the airport and shuttle us in to town for free. Rented a scooter and left it at the airport when finished. We ate at BO's:

    http://www.bosfishwagon.com/
     
  22. cbmontgo

    cbmontgo Pre-takeoff checklist

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    Thanks, guys. Really appreciate the help.
     
  23. tinerj

    tinerj Cleared for Takeoff

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    If I were doing it again, I'd do it pretty much as I did the last time, about five years ago. I'd fly to Marathon, spend the night there, rent a car the next morning and drive into Key West, and visit a few of the ground sites, then back to Marathon. Then fly around Key West, and back up the keys to continue the trip. The cost and laid back attitude of Marathon is much easier on a person who doesn't think fast (me), than going into Key West to land. Hotels, car rental, etc., are less expensive and more available in Marathon.

    By the way, Key West International Airport is shorten by ATC to merely "International", which can be disconcerting when you're told that "You are in international airspace."
     
  24. Larryo

    Larryo Pre-takeoff checklist

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    FWIW,

    Key West is like any other airport, excepting the proximity to the Air Force Base, but easy in and out. Bring your wallet, they are not cheap. Controllers are fine, no issues. Been there a few times this year.

    However, a flight up the keys to a lunch stop at Sugar Loaf or Marathon is fun and easy, besides very pretty. Avoid the balloon at Cudjoe.

    I see no need to go to Everglades City, a long way unless one wants to overfly water or the Everglades. And this time of year, it will be hot and the misquotes will carry one off. However, cooler times of the year, it's a great place.
     
  25. Brad Z

    Brad Z En-Route

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    you've been autocorrected!
     
  26. Doggtyred

    Doggtyred En-Route

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  27. flyingron

    flyingron Touchdown! Greaser!

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    That's also the reason why all the approaches have MSA's at 15,000 at a Sea Level airport.
     
  28. Mike5250

    Mike5250 Line Up and Wait

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    From Naples or X01 I have flown direct to key west. Swampland with gators and ocean with sharks, might as well take the shorter route. You can fly direct without a flight plan if you are with flight following.