Couple Embarks on Around-the-World Vacation
Patrick and Linda Walker with their Long-EZ.
September 16, 2010 — Patrick and Linda Walker, of Surrey, England, are off on a vacation many of us would love to take: flying around the world in their Long-EZ. “Nothing more, nothing less,” Patrick wrote in an e-mail describing their journey this week. “We shall go as far as we can, and if we happen to make it all the way around, then great; if not, then, hey, we had a good time anyway.”
Patrick, EAA 358299, is a retired airline pilot who flew international routes for many years. “I just wanted to spend a little more time in some of the countries I had only flown over and see what it was like looking up from the ground rather than looking down from 35,000 feet,” he said.
Regarding the choice of airplane, he says, “The Rutan Long-EZ just has to be the best long-distance cruising aircraft, except for one thing: There’s really not that much room in it for all you need for a trip like this!” The project took six years and two weeks from first part to first flight. “A bit too long,” he admits.
It’s a pretty standard O-320-powered Long-EZ, equipped with a Trio Avionics ProPilot autopilot, composite baggage pods, and a good radio kit from Garmin. The Light Aircraft Association in the UK even allowed an increase in maximum takeoff weight to allow everything to be carried, he said.
You can follow the Walkers on their Earthrounders’ holiday through the TravelPod.com website.