Jill Tallman

Fun, fun, fun on Maryland’s Eastern Shore

February 25, 2009 by Jill W. Tallman, Associate Editor

The winds were gusting to 30 knots at Bay Bridge Airport last Friday, and there wasn’t a whole lot of flying going on. Saturday, however, dawned calmer and clear, and pilots came out in droves.

I was there to write a story about sport pilot aviation, which is blossoming at this modest nontowered airport that’s located a few hundred yards from the Cheapeake Bay. (If you’re landing on Runway 11, your base and final are over the water.) From my perch in the pilot lounge, I could view a steady stream of aircraft taking off and landing. It was gratifying to see, given all of the crappy economic news we’ve been dealing with.

Even better was the opportunity to talk to student pilots who, quite simply, love flying. Some of these folks drive more than an hour to train here. None of them seemed to think that was any hardship.

In an upcoming issue of AOPA Flight Training, you’ll meet:

  • Barry, whose years of sailing experience means she knows the watery landscape of the Eastern Shore intimately–but admits she has a little more trouble picking out landmarks on the ground…
  • Anthony, a master mechanic who completed the King Schools home study program before he ever took a flight lesson…
  • Tim, who at over 6 feet tall is probably the last person you’d think would want to fold himself into a light sport airplane–but he does, and has room to spare…
  • Karen, a grandmother who lights up the room when she talks about learning to fly; and…
  • Whitney, who soloed in November, plans her weekends around her lessons, and prefers her trainer’s handbrake to toebrakes.

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2 Responses to “Fun, fun, fun on Maryland’s Eastern Shore”

  1. Steve Roth Says:

    I have not been to Bay Bridge in years but the last time I was there the FBO person on duty was very nasty, insisting (grumbling) about getting the “landing fee” (I could not get my wallet open fast enough) and very unhelpful about getting to a restaurant. Evidently, the town or county owned the airport and installed a guy in the FBO who really did not care if anyone used it.

    So, I took command and telephoned a local restaurant who came to pick us up and ignored the FBO guy. I vowed not to return to that airport and have not been there since then.

    Your article mentions nothing about the airport per se. So, I am unsure of the reception you received.

  2. Frank Hellwig Says:

    Having been based out of BWI, I have had many occasions to fly in and out of W29. I finished my commercial training there in a Piper Arrow from Trident Aviation. In that time, I have had only excellent experiences with both the FBO and John Galdieri’s fine operation.

    On hot summer days after a long flight, I would go to the deli behind the airport for first-rate food – no need to drive anywhere!

    It’s a great little airport with some challenging winds at times but other than that, a great little spot on Maryland’s eastern shore.

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