Tuesday, December 10, 2013

It's One down & 2 to go and its been -16 degrees but no time to celebrate

The Mojave desert
Landed at an airport at 9,000ft.........  I want one of these
I am a few weeks into my training here at Sheble Aviation in the middle of the Mojave desert, so far I have seen the extremes of weather that the desert can offer, from sunny days in shorts and t-shirts to freezing nights and desert snow to howling 45 knots winds..... oh and we fly in all of that.
My flying experience in Europe to date didn't prepare me for the steep learning curve of mountain flying where there are some serious considerations to have which affect the ability to fly at altitude and mountain flying at night is a whole new beast.
I certainly have felt like a student once again and and its been a refreshingly tough experience so far.
Today as I am writing this I have just got back after a long day which started at 3am with a night flight over the mountains to Las Vegas airport for my Instrument rating flight test & is ending with a cool beer in my hotel room.
The in-between part was a nerve racking trial and test that if I am honest I managed to get myself a little wound up about.
The hard work over the passed few months of the theory course and the last couple of weeks of training has paid off so far.
The test consisted of a 3 hour oral test on flight planning, law, weather & regulations prior to even being allowed to get into the plane.
Those of my students who know me will know I love to talk, but when on the receiving end of the questioning I managed to get a little tongue tied at times, and was extremely relieved when the examiner turned around and said the magic words "Ready to go flying then ?"
It was off for what turned out to be my last flight with the blindfold on for a little while, as after taking off and heading out around the mountains for various holds, system failures and approaches we landed and the examiner told me I had done a great job and handed me my new Instrument rating..... I am exhausted. But...... as I sit here with my beer in hand I am reading up on tomorrows lessons which is where I start flying the high performance Navion plane where I will get my High performance endorsement and I should have my FAA Commercial license if all goes well after the weekend. At least now I will be allowed to look out of the window and see some of the scenery. I sneaked some pictures today on the way back from Las Vegas whilst flying the 220 Horse power Navion plane today..... I will try to take more now I am allowed to look out of the window.

Home for the time being

Who's holding where ?

The Navion- my next challenge

The school here has a twin engined sea plane.....mmmmmmm

Flying the desert at night

Some proper weather in the mountains and a serious STAY AWAY

The real life cowboy town

The simulator

Some cheeky weather that has been keeping us on the ground for a few days

A pretty big week of flying with some centreline hopscotch.....

Hours flown this month(FEB): 33 Landings: 8 Countries visited: 5  Continents visited: 3  Quick iron of the shirt and in th...