Trey Walters (Co-Owner / CEO) and his wife, Kelsey (Co-Founder), started Blue Line Aviation with one goal: to provide the highest quality flight instruction for your dollar. Trey is a decorated Operation Iraqi Freedom Veteran and former Raleigh Police Officer. Trey is an FAA Safety Representative and holds multiple ratings including Instrument Ground Instructor, Gold Seal Flight Instructor Airplane Single Engine, Multi-Engine, and Instrument instructor certifications.
Trey’s Most Memorable Spring Flying Trips
When it comes to springtime flying, I often think back to the many trips I would take down to Florida for a cruise with my wife. She was a travel agent and would often coordinate cruises for our family and friends, many of which departed from Fort Lauderdale. It’s still to this day one of my favorite vacation spots to fly into! There’s something very satisfying about heading South for warmer weather and setting off on a cruise with some of the favorite people in your life—especially after a dreary winter.
Out of the many trips and vacations I’ve been on, there are two that distinctly stand out in my mind. For one trip, I took advantage of being the proud owner of a King Air 300, which I primarily used for charter operations.
On one occasion, when the King Air wasn’t busily flying charter customers, my family and I decided to load up the airplane and take a trip to the “SUN ‘n FUN” fly-in. After departing from Raleigh, we were off to pick up my sister and her family in Atlanta, Georgia. Once we had an airplane full of passengers, half of which were kids under the age of six, we departed for Tampa.
Shortly after takeoff, we climbed through a cloud layer and broke out just in time for sunset. Everyone, the kids especially, loved seeing the sun set below a vast sheet of white clouds on our way to warmer weather. My family and aviation mean the world to me, so any chance I get to bring the two together, I make sure to take full advantage of.
Another memorable springtime trip, although less eventful than my outing with the King Air, was flying a Robinson R-44 a few hundred miles down the coast from Palm Beach to Raleigh. Although not quite as fast as the King Air, I was able to cruise low over the coast, and see a new level of detail in the topography that’s entirely lost at higher altitudes.
Trey’s Spring Flying Tips
Generally, when I plan trips for the springtime, I try to look at the whole picture and get an idea of what I need to happen, and what is possible to happen. Planning as far ahead as practical is crucial, and using aeronautical decision making during every step of the planning process is the key to success.
Making sure you have the right aircraft, right airport, and finally the right FBO. I recommend forming a good working relationship with the staff at your destination’s FBO. You may find that it yields pleasant results. I fly to Florida a lot, so whenever I can I try to take a coastal approach down South. It’s stunning during all times of day, and the weather typically tends to be a little bit calmer off the shore than it does over the land. Just be sure you stay within power off glide range if you don’t have life preservers!
A tip that I like to keep in my pocket when flying during the spring is to always take weather into account. Weather has always been one of those things that makes flying fun (interesting). If you want to fly South, do your best to time your arrival to come in either before or after the afternoon pop up storms. As always, having an instrument rating is a key component to flying safely, but also being current and proficient in your aircraft and instrument flying in general. If you haven’t flown in a while, a long cross country in instrument conditions probably isn’t the best place to start back up again. Having an extra set of eyes in the flight deck never hurts either, if all else fails they can get some awesome pictures as you are coming in on your approach!