The enormous difficulty that he encountered in the way of weather and makeshift air fields is something that reduces the present day observer to a speechless admiration. He took part in the New Year’s Day activities at Victor Harbor in 1920, and had to contend with a threatening sky and very poor visibility. Clouds were touching the Adelaide Hills as he took off from Enfield, and he was forced to stay low for the whole of the 35-minute trip.
The makeshift landing field had been prepared by enthusiastic helpers without the slightest knowledge of aircraft, despite an earlier, preliminary visit from Mr H.C Richards, who warned them that it was too dangerous, and that they should cancel the flyer’s engagement.
As Butler landed, the Red Devil kangaroo-hopped across the field in great, diminishing bounds – the undercarriage of that Bristol Monoplane was rigid. But, as always, the show went on, with two displays during the afternoon, and each time the same ordeal of landing on that murderous field. The delighted crowd took it all as part of the show, only that smiling little man himself knew what he was risking to give the local committee its money’s worth.