Lesson 38 - Thursday July 1st
Maneuvers and Dolphins
I was supposed to have a lesson on Tuesday, but I got confused about what time it was, so I ended up missing it. Most embarrassing, so I made sure to arrive on time today, got 67C all checked out. After pre-flighting it I was checking the controls, and there was a little catch as I pulled them back. But I could not repeat it, so assumed it was some friction thing what was smoothed out by moving the controls.
So Craig arrives, we go to the run-up area, and the firs thing I do is a control check, where the controls catch again when pulled back, especially with the controls turned all the way to the right. It's serious enough now that we go back, and get another plane.
8148H, my old friend. I'd not flow in it her for six weeks (my lessons have been pretty sparse in general recently, what with vacations, weather and my ailing memory). All is well, we up and away.
While climbing Craig demonstrates flying a VOR radial, and intersecting a VOR radial, fairly straightforward, but I have to remember to keep scanning, and not fixate on the VOR. Today I kept losing focus, and hence height or heading.
We fly into the valley, and do some maneuvers. My steep turns are terrible, I can't seem to remember how to do them. We do some slow flight, which is a little better, but my altitude freaks out at the drop of a hat.
We fly back over to the coast, there are a lot of clouds about, and Craig points out a few interesting ones, including a lenticular cloud.
We then do another steep turn over the ocean, and that goes a little better. Craig them points out some herds of dolphin beneath us. Very cool, there must have been 30-40 of them in two pods. Craig told me to descend to 500 feet and circle around them. Very cool, we flew over them for five minutes or so, then headed back (along the VOR) to SMO, where I made a reasonable landing.
Afterwards Craig said he'd want to solo me soon, maybe tomorrow! Gulp! Either way, we will probably be flying to Camarillo tomorrow. Hopefully that will go better than last time.
(c) 2004 Mick West