Legal? Or Safe?

Recently, a subscriber sent me a note to ask about the legality of departures into bad weather. At first, this seemed like a rather simplistic question, but as I dug, the back story made it a reasonable discussion. That pilot had a career in the military. As with most large bureaucracies, its operations were rather […]

Safety Management

Kemper Aviation, a now-defunct flight school in Lantana, FL, was once clogged with over 100 young students. Some showed a lack of selfcontrol extending from their youthfully turbulent private lives on the ground upward to the skies of South Florida. Youngsters may think they are invulnerable. Most had yet to learn that invulnerability is a […]

Emergency Returns

Aviation makes us mission-minded. The whole point of these flying machines is to go somewhere and do something, even if that’s just practice following little black lines on the iPad so we can make pretty pictures on FlightAware. That’s what makes practicing emergency returns so important and so frustrating. It’s not fair having something go […]

Going in Circles

Many of us are in need of some instrument refreshing. After the usual winter hiatus, followed by all the restrictions of COVID-19, themrust might be thicker than usual. So once you’ve gotten reacquainted with your local ILS and LPV approaches, practice some edge cases, like a nonprecision, non-GPS approach. One favorite is the circle-to-land. If […]

Train In New England

Like many of us, my insurance requires periodic formal recurrent training. Although choices are limited, I’ve tried to explore new (to me) facilities and to review that facility in these pages. This year I attended Cessna 340A Recurrent Training at National Flight Simulator in Manchester, NH. It was a positive experience and I’m glad I […]

Between The Cracks

During my high school years, I got a lift home from a friend. Approaching my neighborhood, I said, “Turn left here.” I expected my friend to be a sensible driver, spot the clearly marked street a few hundred feet ahead, decelerate, merge into the designated left-turn lane, look for traffic, and smoothly turn into my […]

Unleash Your Wings

You’re an active pilot, right? You even get some training now and then beyond what you’re required to get. But, if you spent a...

COVID-19 Lessons

The first thing that happened was a sudden shift in “safety” concerns over to handling COVID- 19. Should I go fly? Wear a mask? But, where we began and where we’re headed now are two very different paradigms. The aviation safety culture we’ve built over decades is somewhat perishable—it’s not just like “riding a bike”—and […]

Around the “Hood”

Over the past months, some of us decided that flying was essential and a social distance of 6000 feet was a thousand times better...

GTN Essentials Training

Years ago, I attended Garmin’s combined G500 and GTN classroom training. This got me comfortable with my new avionics. However, not everyone is able...

Access to Asheville

When you were seven, your mother sent your father to the store for milk, and he came back three years later—but only because he got lost. At least that’s the way your mom liked to tell it. Now it’s time for your dad to see his granddaughter (your daughter) graduate from the University of North […]

No Two Alike

Maybe it’s because the long Midwestern winter is not yet over, but the idea that approach procedures are like snowflakes comes to mind. From a broad view, they’re all the same with minimum weather requirements, descents, altitude restrictions, and missed approaches. But, up close, no two are alike. Such is the case during a short […]