Flowers in the sky

Several years ago I was returning to OUN from DAL. I was VFR and using flight following, about 40 miles South of OKC I was handed off to Oke City Approach. Everything was pretty routine and the radio traffic was as expected. I did note that there was a call from a plane announcing off Paradise and climbing to 7000. I continued North and was starting to anticipate the hand-off to Westheimer tower at OUN. I heard the announcement jumpers away on the frequency. Shortly thereafter, all these pretty flowers started to blossom in my flight path. I had thought the plane off Paradise was carrying parachutists and now that thought was confirmed. The jump area is outside of the Class C airspace and actually on the outer edge of the Oke City Approach control area.

I began looking up as well as ahead for falling bodies. I got on the radio with Approach and by this time I was in the "daisy field" surrounded by canopies. I was handed to tower and managed to navigate the obstacles without cutting any flowers or damage to the plane. It was one of the more disconcerting ends to a flight which I have had, not expecting to encounter any person at 4000 feet.


  • Yep, that would get your attention. I regularly fly through a glider area that is directly between KCXO and Brenhham on my way to my 100 dollar bowl of chili and cornbread, but they don't drop in front of you from 3000 feet above and then just stop right in front of the fan. Glad you were able to evade.

  • This happened about 25 years ago. I will say that today ATC and the jump plane are much more coordinated and other traffic is now advised of the jumpers and vectored to avoid those conflicts.
  • The reflection on your windscreen must have been somewhat like's Dave's helmet in "2001: A Space Odyssey" -- all the pretty colors. :o
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