A Little Delay in Those Goals

I went out last Monday and bought the Gleim Commercial Pilot Written Exam CD; I do currently possess a written exam pass but it expires in February and there’s no way I will get up to scratch in time for a checkride that early. So I shall study some more and retake the test.

But then Tuesday, somewhat out of the blue, I got laid off. The circumstances of that event can be the subject of a rant on my main site but suffice to say that I won’t be doing much flying at all until I am re-employed. Still, it does give me plenty of time to re-read the books.

Currently blowing a gale outside, my local field doesn’t have weather reporting but the nearest one, about 15 miles south, is reporting steady 17 knot winds. Seems like a lot more here.

New Year Resolutions

I didn’t do much flying this year, the sorry events back home had the hobby on the back burner, so next year I need to get back into it. Therefore I am setting myself the following goals (in no particular order though clearly some things are more important than others):

  • fly more often well we’d all like to do that I’m sure!
  • sort out my landing technique flying more might achieve this but I still have issues with flaring too high or landing too flat
  • finish my Commercial I was about halfway through it this year and I would like to complete it, going to have to retake the written again as it expires in Feb
  • take a long trip I think there is a lot of experience to be gained from planning and executing a week long trip, somewhere new and unfamiliar
  • be current all the time no more losing any of the currencies

We’ll see how well I do.

Managing Threat

In the wake of the overrun accident at Chicago’s Midway airport, I found the following interesting PowerPoint presentation about managing threat when landing. Whilst it’s focussed on commercial operations (I have a hard job stabilising the 172 at 180 kts on approach!) I still found it interesting reading.

In other news, I’m off to Laughlin today, weather looks good for the trip. Not sure if we’ll show up as the trip will be made VFR but maybe you can catch us on FlightAware.com this afternoon or tomorrow morning. Also, I’ve been playing with my GPS and GoogleEarth maps and should get my first map out of this trip.

Staying Current

As my instrument currency lapses tomorrow for the umpteenth time I was thinking about what it takes for me to stay current (both legally and practically). I need to make:

  1. day VFR flights for PIC
  2. instrument approaches/holds for IFR
  3. night flights for night PIC
  4. flights in a complex plane, day and night and, ideally, some approaches
  5. flights in a high performance plane, day and night and, ideally, some approaches

I don’t know how someone with multi-engine ratings would keep everything current! But if I think about the cost of just keeping up with all those things I’m not sure I’d be able to afford to go on any cross-country trips. Right now I’m night current, and will get my (expiring tomorrow) instrument currency back next week, but its been so long since I flew the 182RG that I think I’ll get my CFI to ride along with me before I sit behind the pointy end of that.

Maybe what I need is a calendar with these flights mapped out so I can keep up with it all. How do other people keep current?

An Update!

Well, this hasn’t exactly been the most happening of blogs largely due to the fact that I have barely been flying this year. Up until yesterday I had only sat in the left seat four times this year, so I decided it was time for some cobweb-dusting-off training. Oh, and my flying club requires me to get an annual checkout and that was due ages ago, totally forgot about it.

So yesterday was part one of two. Went out over East County and went through all the basic stuff like stalls, steep turns, emergency landings. Amazingly it went very well, perhaps I should not fly more often? It went so well I even enjoyed the stalls, including the power-on ones. Maybe it was the heat? After that we went to Gillespie Field for some touch and goes which went ok after I got settled into it and then back to Montgomery Field.

Monday we will finish up by going over the various takeoff and landing types, plus a review of the regulations, and then I’ll be legal again to rent the planes. Currently in the planning process are a trip to Vegas with a co-worker or two, and a trip to Show Low, Arizona with Teri.