Your connection with the sky

Jason Schappert is A Certified Flight Instructor author of 4 aviation flight training titles and the creator of the best selling Online Ground School at

A pilot since 16 years of age Jason has the experience and qualifications to help you with any aspect of your flight training. Visit his blog at for help with all facets of flight training. About Jason Schappert

How To Succeed In Your Flight Training

August 4th, 2010

We all know that flight training is an investment. We put our money into flight training and wait for the returns that we expect from our training and that is our private pilot certificate. Thing is, the returns in flight training is not literally something you wait for, but they are things that one has to work on in order to achieve. You need to take some steps to ensure that you get to achieve success in your flight training so that the money you spent for the training would not go in vain.

Make no mistake about it. Success in flight training can be difficult to achieve. You have to spend a lot of time and perhaps develop some habits that you might not have before in order to succeed in your flight training. Here are some tips that you might want to take into consideration for your flight training.

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Make the Most Out of Your Instruction

There’s no doubt about it. You bring yourself closer to success when you make the most out of your instruction. Fly as much as you can and listen closely to your instructor so you can pick up some knowledge that will be helpful down the road. Read More >>

I Want To Learn To Fly! Where Do I Start?

July 26th, 2010

Boy does this question come up a lot! First off congratulations on getting bit by the bug, learning to fly is one of the best things you can do for yourself whether you make it a hobby or a career. Yet knowing where to start and how to do it efficiently is key!
Learn To Fly
How do you find a flight school? What makes a great flight instructor? How much will this cost me!?!? Are all very valid questions that I get asked often.

The best thing you can do is to take an adventure to the airport. Scope out different flight schools and facilities! Ask a ton of questions and compare aircraft, prices, etc... Shop around just like you would if you were buying a new car or home. It's an investment, treat it like one.

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If you're curious and looking for more answers on learning to fly you can download Jason's Free Ebook "The Private Pilot Blueprint" which talks about all the questions you need to ask, how to save money on your flight training and much more.

When learning to fly remember one thing... A good pilot is always learning!

3 Things You Should Be Doing In The Cockpit

July 12th, 2010

Aviation is more than just a passion. It is a discipline. Because it is a discipline, it is a must that a private pilot develops good habits from the days of being a student pilot and during the days that he is operating as a private aviator. Unfortunately, some individuals in the aviation industry forget some crucial steps during their practice. To add insult to injury, these things they forgot are very important in maintaining a reputation as a safe and good private pilot.

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I cannot stress enough the importance of maintaining safety during every private pilot flight that you undertake. Safety is especially a concern when you are ferrying passengers, and you are responsible for both their lives and yours. Here are three things that you should keep in mind and that you should always be doing in the cockpit in every flight. Read More >>

Crossing The Mountains

July 1st, 2010

For a Florida based pilot the idea of mountain flying seems like something far off. I've traveled north and flown over some of what I "thought" was higher terrain. Yet have never really experienced the Rockies or seen a true "mountain pass"

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Well that has all changed. I was able to take the concepts I've always heard about: Mountain Waves, how to approach a pass, etc... and apply them to flying.

Yet not in any turbo charged pressurized airplane. This was all done in my little Cessna 150! It took early morning flights and all 100hp to make this trip possible.

If you have never done any mountain flying I highly suggest you do the needed extensive research before your flight some of these things include.

Know Your Route Inside and Out

It's important to have your route planned out properly, frequencies lined up, and a back up plan in order. Keep in mind that weather may be different in a mountain pass as compared to the airport you're heading to. Read More >>

Flying Across America – KDAB > KDTS > KBTR > KHOU

June 28th, 2010

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I'm writing this from the pilot lounge at KBTR Baton Rouge International. I just wanted to share some photos of our adventure as we fly across America.

We've had thunderstorms that have caused us to divert 40 miles off course as we fight winds and hot temperatures.

Below are a few photos I thought you all would enjoy.

Myself and German pilot Vincent Lambercy will be spreading the message about the value of general aviation nationwide.

Check out the website and see if we're coming your way! We'd love to meet you guys!

Get Your Hands Dirty and Learn About Your Plane!

June 10th, 2010

Annual Inspection
I don't know about you but i'm a hands on learner, a kinesthetic learner would be the proper term to use. For most there is no better way to learn than by doing!

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When you stick you head in the engine cowl could you point out the carburetor? Vacuum pump? Magnetos? What about the Carb heat arm? I'm a very strong believer that students and aircraft owners should be able to work on the airplanes they fly. This might be basic preventive maintenance or owner assisted maintenance like i've been doing all this past week. Read More >>

What is Density Altitude?

June 4th, 2010
Density Altitude Chart

Density Altitude Chart

Density altitude by definition is pressure altitude corrected for non-standard temperature. Well what does that mean? Density altitude is better described as where you airplane feels like it's at. No not where location wise but where altitude wise does it feel like it's at?

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If the surface density altitude at your airport is 3000 feet your airplane feels like it's at 3000 simply sitting on the ground. This is huge if you're flying a tiny piston airplane like my Cessna 150!

This really puts a cap on our performance for that day.

Think about out west where it really gets hot and the density altitude gets really high! I'm talking altitudes that may even ground you that day because your airplane may not even leave the ground.

Density altitude is just one of five different types of altitude curious about the other 4? Check out this video.

Flying In Crosswinds

June 1st, 2010

It's important that as a student you catch on to crosswind taxi, takeoff, and landing procedures early off in your flying career. Failure to do so is simply detrimental to your flight training.

Here's a tip I encourage all my students to work at.

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Don't Shy Away From Crosswinds

Yes, the wind may be favoring runway 36 but why not go to another airport that has a runway 27 and really get out there and practice these crosswind procedures.

You can't choose where the wind is coming from on the days you fly. Before you solo you should have a through understanding of crosswind procedures. Think of something simply like, how do you taxi in a crosswind? Many students fail to answer this question let alone execute it properly.

Learn Your Takeoff procedure and most importantly you crosswind landing procedure.

There are two crosswind landing methods, the sideslip and the crab. Figure out which one works best for you and understand/be able to perform both of them.

Then before you know it you'll have perfect crosswind landings in your bag of tricks.

Common Flight Training Snags

May 14th, 2010

Lets face it, we all understand at one point or another we're going to get tied up in some sort of flight training snag or pitfall. How can we overcome these? At some point between becoming a pilot and leading all the way up to the private pilot checkride you'll need to address these. Let's look into it some more.

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Flight Training Plateaus

A plateau is an elevated area that is relatively flat. This explains a lot when it comes to flight training or goal setting. We've all been there. Doing really well at our flying, things are falling into place. Then all of a sudden our landings just plain stink!

How could this happen? Instead of continuing in your progress you feel stuck and the only thing you know to do is keep doing landings till you fly the wheels right off!

That's not the answer! Yes, you will need some practice but don't over do it! Spend some time doing hood work or practicing other maneuvers. Don't let your plateau get the upper hand on you. It will pull you in like a vice. Read More >>

Getting Your Feet Off The Ground

April 27th, 2010

I'm writing this with a huge smile on my face! Today I received an email from one of my readers on MzeroA saying

"I don't know what took me so long to get my feet off the ground. I've been a reader of your blog and even picked up a copy of your Private Pilot Blueprint like you suggested in your AOPA post "I Want to Learn to Fly - Where Do I Start?" Thanks for helping me get my feet off the ground."

What an awesome email to get! I find this all over, students who have the itch to learn to fly but don't know where to get started or aren't sure that you can do it. Read More >>