Thursday, January 26, 2006 

Of Phase Three

I've been busy. Not much so with flying. More on learning procedures and perfecting my flying. My phase two instructor is new to the college so he isn't so anal on procedures as my current one is. After flying with my new instructor once, he showed me how little I knew of Australian laws and regulations with flying. This is important for phase three as I'll be flying into controlled airspace quite a bit. Three weeks has passed and I've only done three flights with him and three sim time, which is quite a slow progress, but my standard operating procedures, aviation law, ICAO (International Civil Aviation Org) procedures has greatly improved.


I passed my night flying on 14th January 2006. My night solo check was done on a runway without any landing aids. There are two runways in use at night. One has landing aids, rows of lights that tell you whether you're on the right glide path. The other one hasn't anything at all, it's up to you to judge whether you're too high or too low. I passed on the less friendly runway.
The trick to night flying is
1. to trust your instruments
2. to be able to recognize optical illusions due to lack of visual cues
3. to be able to judge your glide path using the runway lights
Taking off is a thrill at night as we keep our eyes on the instruments. If a kangaroo was to jump on to the runway while we're speeding down, I'd be having kanga barbecue that night in the hospital.
Once we're up and flying, then we can look out to find our reference. From Jandakot, we can see the lights of Perth and the big jets making their approach for Perth International. It's exciting to think that we're just small flashes of light in the dark night sky. My friend thinks it's scary, I think it's exhilirating.


Lately to destress, my friends and I have taken up playing bridge and chow tai ti at a chinese cafe while drinking bubble tea almost every other night.



Friday, January 06, 2006 


I passed my second phase check on the fourth of January. The flight wasn't the best I've had but my techniques were sound. The only thing the instructor wanted me to practice more was my forced landings. I didn't make it to the runway during practice by about a hundred feet.

Today I went for my first solo nav flight since my check. The three hour flight was almost torture as today's temperature was thirty seven degrees on the ground. At five thousand feet the digital thermometer was showing twenty four degrees (last month it was around fifteen!). Apparently iIt will get hotter as February rolls in.