Friday, 7th of June

We start Friday, the 7th of June slowly, but the weather is favourable and the decision falls to resume the flight in the afternoon. There is still a chance of rain on the way and I need to prepare a protective case for the equipment. Also Frank will help me to install a spectrometer on the mast at the top of the ULM. This will complete the system - ready for work on Baïkal.

There are peasants working in the fields around us. It's quite and pastoral. The scene is pitch perfect - straight from a movie.
In the afternoon the spectrometer is mounted, but the case is not done. I hope we don't hit rain. We say our good-buys and thanks to Christopher and his family. There hospitality is truly remarkable. The takeoff is at 16:30. We start with the calibration of the second IMU. I get the best magnetometer calibration I've ever seen: 0.3 deg average, 2.7 deg maximum. My GPS shows 16 satellites, but Andrei's has none. Did I manage to steal all the signal with my big antenna? I start the logging of the IMUs. The second starts, but the first does not. I have only one IMU again.
The landscape below us is magnificent. A lot of large lakes surrounded by endless fields and forests.
There is a beautiful, but slightly intimidating thunderstorm cloud at a distance and, unfortunately, we are heading towards it. I manage to skype Sophie! There is a rainbow in the big cloud. I hope they can see it. By the time we get closer to our destination, the storm slowly disintegrates. Ten minutes before landing all my computers crash. I bring them back again just to find the IMU data file for the entire flight empty (I kept checking it periodically - it was full). We land at Ketrzyl Wilamowo aerodrome at 19:15.
We are greeted by the owner and the caretaker. They don't speak any English, but Russian is a go. The aerodrome is beautiful and surreal in the low light of the evening.
АН-2 (Кукурузник)
The hangar has a gigantic motorised sliding door. The place has a long and remarkable history. It was a major secret headquarters of Hitler during the second world war. Naturally it became a military aerodrome afterwards. There is a Mig and a Su and a Mi on display.
Everything is open - you can climb right in.

Frank and Jose exploring the Mi-2 (left) and the cockpit of Mig-21 (right)
There is also some Russian military vehicles nearby, but there is a catch. As Frank opens the driver door of a BTR, he finds a wasp hive inside and gets immediately stung.
The support car arrives around 21:00 and there is a lot of enthusiasm about preparing some food. Everybody is starving. As the sun sets down we are viciously attacked by mosquitoes. I am spreading my stuff on a reception bar on the side of the aerodrome building. I am a battery DJ (BJ). The food is great and soon enough the beer is followed by a few bottles of Zubrowka. The party goes on until the morning, but I retire to my tent at 1am.