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October 27, 2001
Day 11

Hooray! Cranes Set a Distance Record

With the help of tailwinds out of the northwest, the cranes sped a distance of 94.7 miles into LaSalle County, Illinois today---nearly the distance they've flown on the entire migration! They were in the air for 1 hour and 55 minutes, with an average speed of 59 mph. WOW!

This migration uses 3 ultralights, with Bill Lishman, co-founder (with Joe Duff) of Operation Migration, flying "scout." Today Bill's plane had troubles so only the lead and the chase ultralights flew. Without the third plane to help in case #4 dropped out again, the crew decided that #4 should make today's trip in the truck. But do you expect that to last? Stay tuned.

Here's something you may not have thought about: It's a cold trip for the pilots! The warmest temperature they felt while airborne was 34 degrees F (1.4 degrees C). They have to wear the white crane costume to conceal their human-ness from the cranes. So how do they stay warm in an open cockpit? Before the migration, Deke Clark told Journey North how they deal with the cold. Hear Deke's comments:

Audio Clip
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Try This! Journaling Question
  • Including today's progress, how many miles has the migration covered so far?

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Journey North is pleased to feature this educational adventure made possible by the Whooping Crane Eastern Partnership (WCEP).

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