Sunday, May 16, 2010

Lesson 8 - Best. Flight. Ever.

In perfect contrast to the somewhat awful experience I had last week, this flight was amazingly fun. As we discussed, I wanted to slow things down a little and do some confidence building. Today we had very nice weather and smooth air. We did the Four Fundamentals (climbs, descents, turns, level flight) and I did them quite well if I say so myself. I took the time before we started maneuvering to really get the airspeed trimmed just right. The key I've learned to this is two-fold. First, you really have to take your hand off the wheel and just wait a few seconds and watch it. Secondly, when your instructor starts to tell you what you need to do next, you kinda put up your hand and just say, hang on a sec... I'm working on something here. That worked surprisingly well. I figure it's my nickel so if I want to spend an extra minute in level flight that's on me. :-)  I found it time (money) well spent as when I performed maneuvers I found that the airspeed and altitude stuck like glue. There were a few moments when I wondered if the altimeter was even working as it appeared frozen. That was a really great feeling.

Then it was back to the field to practice landings. I did 4 full stop landings. After each we taxied back to the end of the runway to do it again. With no wind these were fairly easy. All in all the day was exactly what I needed: a confidence boost..

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