Alderney in the Channel Islands, is just a 90 minute flight away from Redhill in a PA28. I took advantage of some early autumn sun, to make a day trip.
This was another long water crossing in Golf-Oscar Romeo, before I found out the engine was on the way out! I’d passed Alderney on our recent trip over to Jersey, and I felt I had to drop in. The island is only 3 miles long, and sits just to the northeast of Guernsey, and to the west of Cherbourg in France. The NOTAMs showed me that the Portsmouth danger areas were not active in the morning, so I routed through them at FL085.
The approach into Alderney was stunning. On contact with Jersey control initially, I was cleared into the controlled airspace not above 5000ft VFR, routing via Casquets Lighthouse. Because I was zoomed in on SkyDemon, I couldn’t see the VRP and had to double check with the controller. It was on my half-mil chart though, and I soon found it. Guernsey Approach was the next unit I spoke to, before being passed over to Alderney Tower.
Runway 08 was in use at Alderney, and I was treated to some breathtaking views on final.
The town of St Annes is just a 10 minute walk from the airport, and from there I made it down to the seafront and harbour.
I was staggered by how quiet the island was, not so surprising when you realise that it has fewer than 2000 inhabitants. I enjoyed my walk a little too much, and by the time I returned to the town, most food establishments had finished serving lunch. I grabbed a sandwich in a little cafe.
The airport staff were lovely – there was a commercial flight about to depart and the terminal was busy. Nonetheless, the security guard picked me out of the crowd, and checked my details before allowing me airside for my flight back home.
You can see the GPS track of this flight here.
Video: Redhill to Alderney