Trip to Locarno
We had already made the plan a few times this year to fly to Locarno for a short visit to Maurits. In February, strict Swiss quarantine measures threw a spanner in the works, and we made a trip to Midden-Zeeland instead.
In March we brought a glider to Maurits, but still because of the quarantine measures, and also because the weather conditions were far from ideal north of the Alps, we brought the glider by car to southwest Germany, where Maurits took it over, and we flew back.
In June we visited Locarno on our way back from our vacation in Italy. That was the only time we visited Locarno by plane this year. Also the planned visits in July and August fell through because of the weather, and we made short visits to Nördlingen and Zwickau instead.
We had hoped to fly to Locarno on Wednesday, October 6, but the weather in Germany and the Alps was not good that day. In addition, we also had work we needed to finish on Wednesday before traveling to Switzerland. We decided to look further the next day.
On Thursday, the weather forecast for Germany and the Alps was again not good to fly that day. Although the weather outlook for Germany from Friday to Sunday was good, the outlook was uncertain for the high Alps that we had to cross. We decided not to delay further and to hope for good weather to arrive on Friday. We cancelled the booking for the airplane, and we got in the car Thursday morning and headed for Locarno.
On the route in Germany the areas we drove through were colored red and orange on the Gafor map, and that was not exaggerated we could see.
The Gotthard pass was also
X-Ray (closed) on the Gafor map.
South of the Gotthard, the weather was great.
We arrived in Locarno early in the evening, and we had dinner with Maurits in a restaurant near Locarno.
On the road near Buochs
Just before the Gotthard tunnel entrance
Good weather south of the Gotthard
Passing Ambri aerodrome
On Friday, Maurits had a busy day of flying. We agreed to pick him up at the Locarno airport in the early evening and then go somewhere for dinner. During the day, Veleda and René went to Lugano.
Villa Ciani in Lugano
The Church of Santa Maria degli Angeli
The Water Jet On The Bay Of Lugano
Veleda in Lugano
After we had visited Lugano we drove back to Locarno. We stopped at Monte Ceneri to look at the view. Then we drove to the nature reserve south of the Locarno airport. There we tested our geographical knowledge with a puzzle book while having a small picnic in the grass.
Maurits had indicated that he would be ready at about 19.00 local time. By six o'clock we drove to the airport, and saw Maurits land at about 18.30. After first stopping by Maurits' apartment to drop something off, we drove on to Cannobia in Italy, where we ate a really good pizza.
Pastime with a puzzle book
View of Locarno airport from Monte Ceneri
Maurits just landed at Locarno airport
Dinner in Cannobio, Italy
On Saturday morning, Maurits had to fly first. It was a flight with a student to Albegna in Italy, where it was rather windy that day. Maurits and René visited Albegna in 2010, and for Maurits it later turned out to be a regular destination.
Meanwhile, Veleda and René went to Locarno in the morning. Early in the afternoon we drove to the airport of Locarno to pick up Maurits. Then we drove to Como.
Veleda on a bench in Locarno
Arrived at Locarno airport
View to the east from Locarno airport
In the car to Como, Italy
Como is a historic town, established by Julius Caesar as an Alpine garrison and Roman holiday resort in the 1st century BC. The city's medieval watchtowers were built by Frederick Barbarossa, and its three impressive Romanesque basilicas, laden with priceless works of art, are built on the remains of once-rich monasteries.
Veleda and Maurits, Porta Torre in Como
The Basilica of San Fedele in Como
Of course, we also went to check out Como's famous water aerodrome. We were too late to make a flight. The planes that had just landed were taken out of the water and put in the hangar. Maurits inquired what it would cost to get a seaplane license in Como. It would cost €2,500.
Piper Super Cub floatplane
C172 landing at Como's water aerodrome
Cessna Skyhawk floatplane
Aero Club Como
Visiting Aero Club Adele Orsi at Varese airfield
On Sunday we went to Varese, where the local gliding club had an open day. Maurits is a member of the gliding club at Locarno, but because it is basically a military field, it is not allowed to glide during the week. Hence, he wanted to orient himself to alternatives. It seemed to be a suitable aero club, but a fair bit of a drive from Locarno. It is probably necessary to purchase a car then as well. We will see what he will decide.
Terrace in front of the flying club
Aero club and restaurant at Varese airfield
Hangar at Varese airfield
Veleda and René first planned to drive back to the Netherlands on Monday morning. Because there would be rain on Monday we expected that it would be very busy on the road with lots of traffic jams. Therefore we went straight back in the evening, and we arrived home at half past three in the morning.
On the way back
South of the Gotthard