Its been on my list for awhile to land the helo at the farm and give my mom a ride. My original plan was to do a tour of all the places we lived growing up – there were 7 farms from the time I was born until I left for college at 18. Unfortunately, I didn’t have time to do them all, I did however hit two of the biggest ones.
So I grabbed the R22 from Frederick and landed on the front lawn. I grabbed a quick selfie, and Cristina grabbed a few photos of me getting my mom strapped in.
And then we were off!. I flew east from Littlestown PA, crossing south of Hanover PA. The first location on the tour was the farm we lived at while I was in high school. This was the closest to suburbia I ever lived, but it was also one of the best places we lived because I went to South Western High School. South West is one of the best public schools in the region, and its the school I claim as my alma mater. Of the 5 school districts I attended growing up, I only have only kept in touch with friends from two of these schools. Many of my closest friends today were made while living in Hanover PA.
The arrow shows our house, while the circle outlines the farm. The barns are still standing, although much of the area around has since been developed. The farm was formerly part of the Lana Lobell Standard-Bred farm – a huge farm in the Hanover area that had gone defunct some years earlier.
Next we flew over Codorus State Park (cleanest water in the State of PA) and Lake Marburg. Between my knob year and sophomore year at The Citadel, I came home and had a job renting boats at the marina here. One of the best jobs I ever had!
Then we flew over our farm in Brodbecks PA. This was the first farm my mother purchased. It was rough when she moved in, and she made it quite nice. I’m sad to say it has not been well maintained in the 27 years since she sold it. The only thing I can tell that has been improved is perhaps new roofs on some of the structures. Everything else looks like its gone completely uncared for. Sad – it was quite a cool little farm. I lived here from the age of 3 to 10 years old. This is the only other school district I count among my current, and lifelong friends. Susquehannock High School – Southern York County (neighbors the best school district – South Western) is another great school.
My buddy Dusty Wolfgang lives just around the corner from the farm – in fact the entrance to the farm is at the bend of the road between the Snyder and Wolfgang Estates. I’ve known Dusty since I was 3 years old – so thats 34 years now. My good buddy Zack Snyder’s parents moved to a home also located on this road. Their house, a log cabin I believe, is hard to photograph from a moving helicopter. (Note – my mother took all these photos!)
The last place we flew over before heading back was the house of Skip Hoover – Chad Hoover’s father. The rail road tracks / creek on the left of the photo are the dividing line between South Western School district where I went to high school, and Southern (Susquehannock) School district where I went to elementary school. Chad and I became really good friends in high school, and I wound up introducing him to some of my friends from elementary. Skip’s house is a quick bike ride from where I lived on the farm in Brodbecks. In fact, Dusty Wolfgang’s parents live on the other side of the tracks just a bit further down this road. Chad and I are still close friends – and he’s lent a hand here and there to this plane project. In fact – he’s done more for this project than anyone I know – from multiple assists in the building of the garage to the installation of the radiant heating system. Chad’s been a stand up guy. Dusty and I used to bike between each other’s houses – literally passing right in front of Chad’s house – not knowing years later we’d all get to know one another from my school district changes!
Between Dusty’s house, the old farm, and Chad’s place – there were a lot of good times growing up. We used to ride dirt bikes all over these fields – none of the farmers in the area cared much, and we had a blast.
And then we returned by the same route we came. Here is my mother’s current farm from the air. I started work on the RV on the garage on this property.
The horses barely took note of the R22 coming in. A few looked up, a few took off at a canter, but nothing crazy. You can never tell with horses when, or what, will spook them.
This was one of the best trips I’ve done in the helo. Getting my mum up for a ride, and the trip down memory lane was quite exceptional.