Tuesday, July 12, 2005

"Ride" that Cessna!

Lesson 3 - Today was a bit different, I was traveling to the airport with anxious anticipation. In keeping with the ground school portion of my studies I realized today would be take off and landing day. I pulled the ICOM A-5 out of the flight bag and scrolled through my
pre-set KMIV WX frequency so that I could catch the latest. I like to have the info as my CFI and I walk out to the aircraft. Winds were reported 280 to 310 varying from 6 to 10 knts. What concerned me was the dark clouds rolling in. I completed the pre-flight noting
only that the oil was topped off and giving me new reading on the ol' dip stick. I finally made the seat adjustment to really provide me with a better view.....I now felt at home. Today was also radio day as I was given control of the right side of the panel. I contacted Millville radio
with my ID, location and intentions. Once noting the airport advisory I changed my heading bug to reflect the wind direction for taxing. I taxied out more consistent and controlled (its all in the seat position). Take off roll was smooth but different in my hands as we were off and climbing out to 1500. Turning south for a series of "S" turns my CFI radioed for a wx update and tracking of the storms moving in. Millville FSS again announced "no movement" from those
big dark uglies. I never thought of it before but my horse riding days really paid off today, the Cessna 172 started getting kicked around and tossed sideways, it was a very bumpy ride. I came across the intercom and gave a lil yee...haww now were having fun as my CFI instructed
me to turn to a new heading taking us home. I really was calm and focused on my duties of flying the plane, I didn't really feel it until I was back on the ground and tied down. Runway 10 was my ticket home as I turned to enter the downwind and go through my landing checklist.
Turning base and then final I was a bit wide of center line. I worked to get myself squared away with yoke and throttle in hand, receiving correction from Dave for dropping the nose to gain some air speed. Once over the numbers I kept easing back until I heard that sweet
chirp only to be interrupted by my CFI reminding me "nose up, nose up let the speed bleed off" Yikes he was right.....I needed to keep nose up and let the speed bleed off for a smooth touch down with the nose gear. The taxi back to our tie down spot was fine and with final checklists completed and the aircraft secure, we spent some time discussing the flight along with future lessons and expectations.

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