St. Johns, Antigua to St. Georges, Grenada
Dec 23, 2012
Mar 30, 2013
Since I was now headed almost due south (mag course about 195 degrees), the headwinds were gone, replaced with about neutral winds. It was cloudier here compared to the first flight leg to TAPA. The approach controller at TAPA handed me off at the boundary of his controlled airspace to Montserrat Approach so for the next three controllers (including Martinique) I had a mix of French and English on the radio
. I didn’t notice any gaps in VHF radio coverage for this entire flight. In the windward islands, I was back to controllers from old English colonies, Joshua approach in St. Vincent: "N788W, you getten’ cleared to flight level 110, mon", and a similar thing arriving at Maurice Bishop International Airport just south of St. Georges in Grenada. Accents on the radio and no radar coverage (instead reporting estimate enroute time to various waypoints) reminds me that I’m now in new territory and getting back in the flying groove I had on my RTW flight.
It was a long day of flying, but I now had the long over-water flight legs behind me. From here there’s a short over-water crossing south to Trinidad then onto the South American mainland across the countries of Guyana and Suriname to my next overnight stop in Cayenne, French Guiana.
The flight out of Antigua for St. Georges, Grenada (TGPY) was pretty uneventful. I saw some nice rainbows over Antigua created by quickly passing rain showers as I climbed out southbound. I had filed for FL090 but eventually asked for and got FL110 to get over some thickened clouds on a route direct from TAPA to TGPY. This route is pretty much over open water. A more conservative approach would be to follow airways A312 and A324 along the chain of leeward islands, and then the windward islands, so if you have a problem, you'd be closer to land and maybe an airport. That route is not a lot longer than the direct route over water I took.