April 2, 2015 – Winds of March!

Went flying twice over the last few days I’ve had off. I wanted to test the new camera and get a few approaches in.

Taking off from Georgetown I could feel the rust that had formed on my PA30 skills. The most challenging time flying this airplane is from the runway to 500′ on the first flight I’ve done after some time off. Losing an engine right about there would have me busy and swimming in more glue than usual. Dash-8 skills have increased, but┬ásome of what I’ve learned gets in the way of flying mine.

After climb out I was getting back into the swing of things. I’ll add some snapshots from the GoPro footage during this four day trip coming up, and maybe even a youtube clip.

The first two approaches into ACY didn’t go too well from an automation point of view. This airplane will fly itself to the runway if you set it up correctly. When you are out of practice and your timing is off, it will not descend when it should, or it will do unexpected things. I found myself disconnecting the autopilot and hand-flying those first two approaches. Good practice, for sure, but exposing rust.

I didn’t mind the moderate bumps, but after mucking up the first two fully automated GPS approaches (not setting switches or being late in getting them set), I had to mentally review the processes again. I┬ácanceled IFR and cruised to Georgetown to give me time to review.

Taking with Dover and now on flight following, I informed them I’d be doing two practice GPS22 approaches. The first to a low approach with a missed coming back to the IAF; the second to a full stop landing. Both of these went well, and the practice paid off.

The camera batteries were dead by the time I landed, or you would have been treated to a landing in gusting crosswinds that was just a bit more exciting than expected. Smooth at the end, but interesting in the middle.

March is for flying in wind!!