January Airport of the Month - Mansfield Municipal Airport (1B9)
Written by CHI Dispatcher Joe P.
To round out our Christmas vacation from the academic world, Kam and I hopped in 271VA for a cross country to Mansfield (1B9). Hopefully this time we would be cleared through the Boston Class Bravo Airspace en route to our destination. Here is the airport information and our planned route below.
Prior to takeoff, Kam and I had an extensive preflight briefing. Since the airspace was going to be incredibly busy, we divided tasks accordingly. Kam would be in charge of entering waypoints into the MFD and Flight Plan, while I flew and communicated with ATC. We discussed that if we did not receive a Bravo clearance by ASPEN, we would request it again, and if not given to us, we would fly underneath the airspace, by KBED and KOWD, all the way down to Mansfield.
At around 2pm, Kam and I took off for Mansfield, checking in at our planned altitude of 4500 FT. All of this preflight planning was rewarded when we were cleared through the Boston Class Bravo airspace when we were 10 miles outside of the airspace. Kam and I were ecstatic and were instructed to proceed direct to the Boston VOR and then direct to Mansfield. This quickly turned into one of the best cross countries ever.
Kam and I were amazed at how easy it was. We got an amazing view of Logan.
The views of downtown Boston didn't disappoint either.
We prepped for our descent and planned to overfly the field and enter on the 45 degree entry for the left downwind for runway 32. There was a yellow Piper Cub in front of us on the downwind and we gave him enough space to land before turning final. Mansfield had a rough runway, but was a great airport to visit. There were many airplanes parked on the apron and a café right on the field.
We taxied back to the active and took off back towards Portsmouth. We decided to skirt the outside of the Class Bravo airspace near Gillette Stadium on the way back.
We got a great view of a few airports around the Boston airspace as well. Bedford Hanscom (KBED) pictured below:
And Lawrence Municipal Airport (LWM):
These airports proved to be great landmarks for our flight plan. It really made things easy for us heading back to PSM.
Kam and I were rewarded with a Bravo Clearance because of our extensive planning for this flight. It also helped us relax in the congested airspace knowing that we had a backup plan. Since we handled the tasks effectively as a “crew”, we didn’t have to use the autopilot to decrease the workload. Yet again, Kam would enter in the waypoints into the flight plan menu and I would fly the airplane. This ability to delegate tasks made this flight effortless.
Thoughts on Mansfield (1B9):
This airport is a gem. There’s a café on the field and if it weren’t for COVID, Kam and I would have stopped in and grabbed a bite. The runway is a little bumpy, but a great challenge and experience builder for newer pilots. Kam and I will definitely return this summer.