Posted by: Brian | June 29, 2010

Up and Down and Up and Down and…

Since I am focusing on nothing but soloing now, I file my flight plan for the pattern at Freeway Airport and that is where we stay.  We literally just takeoff, come back around and land.  I got seven landings in on my last flight.  Six two days ago.  It’s all about repetition as far as what to do on takeoff and flying the pattern.  But, as my instructor tells me all of the time, no two landings are alike.  Winds shift constantly.  Things happen with the airplane.  The point is, I have to be on my ‘feet’ and able to react when something isn’t right.

For the most part, it’s going well.  It has been going a lot better as of late.  Im a lot more awake on the rudder pedals, as I should be.  Not 100% where I need to be, but a marked improvement.  I knew from Day 1 it’d be an issue.  I’m just saying, I have never had to use rudder pedals for my Microsoft Flight Simulators (although they do have them)!  Another issue I have been having is letting the nose up during my base and final turns.  Big no-no, since I am at such slow speeds.  Stalls at a couple of hundred feet off of the ground is a bad thing.  Also, when too low, I need to be quicker on the throttle.  I keep ‘babying’ it, as my instructor says.  Can’t afford to do that. 

The crosswind landings give me the most trouble.  Been doing a little better as of late, though.  For a right crosswind landing, I am supposed to dip the aileron into the wind a bit and enough rudder to keep centerline.  I am doing it now, just a little too late in the landing.  I have been letting the wind throw me around more than I should be.  My last flight was interesting.  Flight Services informed me of an Airmet “T”, for moderate turbulence.  My first couple of takeoffs were fine.  A little bumpy, but fine.  However, about 4 or 5 landings into the lesson, the turbulence started to pick up a lot more.  So much so, in fact, that most instructors started cancelling later sessions with students.  I don’t mind that type of weather; I just look at it as good training.  I’d rather have it this way versus nothing but calm flight conditions, then have something happen when an instructor isn’t present.

It’s coming along.  I will be soloing anytime now, according to my instructor.  We’ll go up, have a few good takeoffs and landings, then he’ll just get out and send me about my way.  I mentally put myself, alone, in the cockpit, taxiing down the runway.  I still dont know how I’ll react.  Laugh, probably.  He doesn’t want to tell me when it will be due to anxiety reasons.  I guess some people handle stress differently.  They also do not want any family members or friends present, for the same reasons.  Too much pressure to “do good”.  I see that side of it.  Either way, I’ll have my camera, so whenever it happens, it happens.  This is something I am OK not rushing…

~ Brian

Total Hours: 24.8



  1. Brian, is it necessary for you to fly solo??? Can’t you afford to have an instructor fly with you at all times?? Please??

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