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Flight 28 at SpanaFlight (Total: 30.7 Dual, 1.3 Sim IFR, .2 Night, 1.0 Complex, 121 Landings)


We have had a lucky weather break this week allowing me to fly quite a bit lately.  As for today, the skies were clear and the wind was light from the North.  And that meant that I would be using Runway 34 today.  I haven't landed on that runway in about 3 months.  I was really anxious to fly when I finally arrived at the airport.  

Matt called me in early, but my plane wasn't available yet, so we did some ground school.  We covered performance charts and graphs for the Cessna I fly.  I was pretty familiar with these already, as I have been studying for the written test at home for the last couple weeks, and there are a ton of performance questions on the test.  After about 15 minutes or so, we were done, and checked the airfield to see if our plane arrived yet.  It had, and the pilots were just walking in.  They handed me the airplane book and keys, and I went out to preflight.  

Things looked fine, and Matt and I loaded up, started the plane, and taxied to runway 34.  The run-up checked out fine, and we took off.  The winds were light and straight down the runway, which made things pretty nice up there.  We had another plane in the pattern with us that we had to extend several legs to keep our distance, as they were slower than us.

The first time around the pattern was pretty good.  I made all my turns well, and didn't exceed any bank angles.  Extended the downwind so that the 152 in front of us wouldn't be a problem, and turned to base and final.  I did roll out early on final on this attempt, but caught it and didn't have any problems getting where I needed to be.  Of course, I flared too much and ballooned on this landing, which was fairly sloppy and had some side-loading.  Definitely not one of my best landings.  We did a full stop and taxied back to 34 to do it again.

Second time around, I did decent pattern work, except I wasn't coordinated during my turn to crosswind and Matt pointed it out to me.  But the rest of the pattern work was decent.  I lined up on final, flared, ballooned, and landed a lot smoother than my first attempt of the day.  We cleared the runway and then taxied back to 34 to try again.

By this time, 2 more planes were added to the pattern, and I had to wait some before taking off.  My time came soon enough and I took the plane up again.  I still didn't coordinate enough on my first turn to crosswind, and Matt pushed the rudder for me.  I felt like an idiot for not doing it correctly again, and Matt scolded me for doing it a second time.  Matt seems to also think that I am ballooning because I have been using 2 hands on the yoke during the flare.  He recommended that I try using just one hand this time.  The rest of the pattern work was uneventful, and one-handed, ballooned the flare and landed smoothly... :)

Taxied back to 34 and took off again.  Caught myself this time on the turn to crosswind, and did fairly normal pattern work.  Landed without ballooning at all.  First good landing of the day, but Matt says we might as well just do a touch and go.  My heart kind of sank then as I knew he wasn't going to solo me today.  I understood why, and didn't say anything to Matt about it.  I was just kind of bummed that it would be another time.  We took it around 3 more times with minor difficulty and most of my landings were decent.  I didn't balloon much afterwards, and my flares were decent.  

We parked the plane at the gas pumps and went inside to debrief.  My next scheduled flight is on Friday, but I am putting no hopes on soloing then.  It is just too big a let down afterwards.  I sure hope it comes soon though, as flying around the airport endlessly is fairly monotonous, even though flying the plane is fun.  I hope to start moving forward in our lessons as well.  It would be nice to see other places for a change, and I can't wait to start doing some navigation and different maneuvers.  All in due time, I guess.

On to Journal Page 34


Last Updated: Tuesday, May 23, 2000


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