Thursday, May 30, 2013

Texas Flying - Wx Woes

Friday was the day after getting checked out in N733CP, I was starting to keep an eye on the weather for my Saturday trip. The TAF showed OVC009 until 11:00L. I had the aircraft booked from 7am till 10am. In my mind I was not flying on Saturday. I was already disappointed. I perked up after lunch on the Friday when we were allowed to finish early. I went straight onto the online booking system and secured 733CP for a couple of hours that afternoon. Took a work colleague with me. Had a couple of delays at the airport but we departed 17L at KAUS at 14.15L. 

Holding Short 17L KAUS
By the time we got airborne, the wind had increased.  The visibility was quite poor. Ended up cutting the flight short. Flew only 0.7 hours. Again, I failed to film with the GoPro (sorry!). My colleague from India had never been in a small aircraft before. He had an absolute blast up there despite the short time. 

As with my checkout flight, I received several vectors from a very helpful Approach Controller. I did make one mistake. Rather than saying "Austin Approach", I said "Austin Arrival". I was a bit tongue twisted that afternoon.

The flight on Saturday was cancelled. However I did go to an aviation event in Hondo Texas. I will blog about that next. There was one other attempt at flying after the weekend. I will blog about that too.

Circuit Of Americas


Exploring Texas - Getting Checked Out

Spent several years before I had a pilots license traveling around Europe, Japan and the US on business. During my spare time on the trips, I tried to keep the weekends aviation theme based, for example, visiting a museum or an airport for some spotting. But now being a Private Pilot, I can get checked out for a rental. This is what I did on a recent trip to Austin, Texas. 

I had some great plans to fly over the one weekend. However, low visibility and wind ruined my flying plans. However I did get to fly twice. A little bit of research and a visit to KAUS, I came across a couple of rental options. Ended up going with Above & Beyond Aviation based out of Atlantic Aviation on the east side of KAUS. After finishing work at 4pm, I ran over to the airport to meet the CFI that the owner has assigned to me. Flew 1.3hrs in SKYHAWK 733CP which was a C172N. Not the prettiest on the outside but flew lovely. Great value at $99 an hour wet!

KAUS Airspace (
Prior to the flight, I hadn't spent much time studying the Texas sectional. I soon  realized why most of the runways were orientated North/South in Texas. Wind was almost always 17014G20!

Flew to Lockhart which is 20nm south of KAUS. There we did 2 touch and goes followed by some stalls and steep turns. KAUS airport lies within class charlie airspace. One of the fun parts of charlie airports is getting radar vectors from ATC. I had already experienced this heading into KTUS back in Arizona. I was inbound back to the airport at around 18:00L. ATC were very busy with inbounds for 17L and 17R. I received about 5 heading changes from ATC and was cleared for a "high speed" approach to a left base 17L. I landed behind a C152 and in front of a Challenger jet. After landing, I received praise from the CFI. He signed my logbook and I was approved for rentals over the weekend.

One regret. I didn't record anything on the GoPro and MP3 recorder. Could only find about 5 seconds of audio on  due to all the frequencies being very busy. 


Wednesday, May 22, 2013

See Ya

Ever listened to a heard a rather over enthusiastic see ya from a Pilot? Happens all the time.

Here's my attempt. I get about a 50% success rate in the controller returning the see ya.

Blogging More

I think I need to blog some more about my flying experiences rather than just posting photos.

Friday, May 17, 2013

Looking back at Sedona

Whilst I flight plan for my next Texas flight, I have been looking back at some of the flights I took over the last 12 months. 

One of the best had to be Sedona, AZ. Talk about beautiful scenery on approach. I departed CHD in the early morning and flew up the east side of the PHX class bravo. Picked up flight following with PHX DEP and was then handed off to ABQ CTR. Video picks up as I check out with ABQ CTR a few miles south of KSEZ.

Last Flight Arizona

Took what was probably my last PiC flight in Arizona for the remainder of 2013. Flew 3.4hrs PiC with 4 landings/2 airports. Route was CHD -> DVT -> PAN -> DVT -> CHD. I picked up @cholubaz from Deer Valley (DVT) and then we flew to Payson (PAN) for breakfast.

PAN ended up being my 30th airport visited in the US. PAN has a pattern entry similar to that in Ireland. I had to fly overhead perpendicular to the runway and then join a left downwind for landing. Crosswind was 90 degrees off the nose which resulted in a crosswind component of 12-15ts. 

Dropped @cholubaz back at DVT and then my last class bravo transition over PHX back to CHD.

I am not going to miss the bumps and heat in Arizona :)

Big shout out to Chris for taking these photos.

Turning Overhead Payson

Final 06 Payson

Landings at DVT

Overhead Payson Airport

Friday, May 10, 2013

Last Flight Arizona

Flying on Saturday for what will probably be my last flight in Arizona before the move to Oregon. Right now, I am looking at the WX and considering which options are available.

Hasn't flying in Arizona been amazing?

Visiting KPHX

Another great flight into KPHX this week. All low hour Pilots should try their hand at flying into a class bravo airport. It's made easier for me by a very helpful TRACON.

Monday, May 6, 2013

First Oregon Flight

I have spent the last 12 months flying the same two aircraft from the same FBO. Today I took the plunge and got checked out in Oregon. Not sure why I was worried. Flew 1.2hrs in a C172D to two different airports. ASI was in MPH and knots. Simple conversion. Hardest part was figuring out there all the other traffic was. I don't know the landmarks well enough yet. I will be landings on runways less than 3000 ft long. Have been used to longer runways in Arizona. Time to focus on my short landing techniques! I performed five landings today. Slipped on three of them (20deg of flaps!) and performed one go around. The CFI was impressed that I chose to slip without being prompted. She was also impressed with my decision to go around. She wasn't impressed with me landing left of the center line though!!

It's going to be great learning to fly in a new state. God I love aviation.
Cub at Twin Oaks Airpark

Inside 08Y

08Y Pre Flight