Archive for December, 2012

Don’t be left out

Wednesday, December 5th, 2012

I took this photo last night en route to my home base of Frederick Municipal Airport. Believe it or not, it was my first night flight in years.

As nice as night flight is, it’s not my favorite. The prospect of losing an engine at night is a little intimidating. My night vision isn’t great. And I had never flown my 1964 Piper Cherokee 140 at night. (Now, you and I know the airplane can’t tell the difference and performs exactly the same. However, the old girl’s panel lights were not very strong, which meant that a flashlight had to be positioned so that it could illuminate the panel from below.)

But a flight instructor in the right seat can do wonders for your self-confidence, and I’ve known that for years. The resulting flight was so enjoyable that I’ve decided to get night current. Our daylight flying window in winter is so constrained; it just seems wasteful to let perfectly good flying time slip through my hands just ┬ábecause the sun has gone down.

If you’re experiencing internal unease with any other aspect of your flying–whether that is stall recovery, short-field landings, or instrument proficiency–a flight instructor is your best friend. Don’t let fears and worries prevent you from enjoying your flying privileges. Train, prepare, get help, and go flying.—Jill W. Tallman

Photo of the Day: Red Bull Air Race

Tuesday, December 4th, 2012

When the Red Bull Air Races arrived in the United States in 2010, Alton Marsh and Chris Rose will tell you that they were something to see. Not only were thousands of people treated to the sight of super-fast airplanes roaring around pylons, but the air race grounds themselves were the size of a small town, requiring 12 days to set up and three days to tear down. You can read about what Marsh and Rose witnessed in this article from the August 2010 AOPA Pilot.

Sadly, the races were scratched in 2011 and 2012, but there remains hope that they will go on in 2013. We’re keeping our fingers crossed.—Jill W. Tallman