You’re approaching an airport with a student and think the airplane ahead of you is confused—and has misled the tower—and may enter a busy traffic pattern against the flow. Will you speak up?
Airframe icing in the winter months strikes fear into the hearts of IFR pilots, but you thought VFR meant this was a non-issue. Now circumstance has proved that wrong. What’s your choice for the best destination airport and landing technique given you’ll be a bit of a test pilot before this flight is over?
What’s so hard about a little formation flying? Does it matter if there’s also air-to-air photography? A request that started simply has ever-growing implications for airspace complications and collision hazards. Is there a way to dial back the expectations or build up the required skill to make a flyable mission or is this simply too […]
The worst has actually happened and now your Cessna is twisted aluminum on the hillside. Everyone is OK for the moment, but daylight is waning and a storm is predicted for midnight. Given the altitude of the accident, that storm might bring snow. Is there any way you can get rescued sooner with minimal extra […]
It seemed like a good idea at the time: Expand your comfort zone with busy Class C airspace by meeting your friend at Fort Lauderdale International. Now you’re sandwiched between a stream of incoming jets thinking there’s wake turbulence you can’t see but must avoid. How will you avoid turning upside-down when you turn final?
There’s an astronomical event your family has been anticipating all year, and your Cirrus is the ride to the perfect viewing spot. The forecast for this evening couldn’t be more clear. That’s perfect for stargazing—but also perfect for fog settling in and complicating the trip back home. What’s your hedge against a late-night surprise?
Going with the flow has advantages, but an acceptable risk for one pilot can push the envelope for another. However, standing up for your needs might add risk for someone else. Do you try to fit in and see how it goes, simply do your own thing despite the crowd, or create a maneuver on […]
You stayed clear of growing thunderstorms on the way home so far, but during a needed break for fuel and food, they’ve caught up. Now a cell threatens your departure. If you can get airborne quickly, you’ll get ahead of the weather and home. If you can’t, you might not fly out until tomorrow.
Many times the decision isn’t “go/no-go” so much as “how to go?” Instead of risk versus reward, you’re weighing a safe but boring option against something more appealing yet less squarely in your comfort zone. How will you square the issues of traffic, airspace, weather, low-altitude flight, and potential anxiety in this trip through NYC?
All you wanted was a day at the beach. Instead, you’re airborne in an airplane lacking a primary flight control. An air traffic controller helped you pick an airport for landing and has people standing by. Now you must configure the controls that remain and decide which technique gives you the greatest chance of walking […]
What should have been a routine flight gets an unexpected twist: Tower clears you to land on a runway you don’t feel is safe but won’t clear you to land on one that looks much better. Will you go with the clearance, insist on your preference, or make an impromptu change at night and in […]
You’re at an airport where joining a full pattern is just SOP. Then, a bird ends its days by punching an actual hole in your windscreen. However, the airplane is still flying, and the rest of the Lexan is holding. Will you make everyone get out of your way, or will you find a quieter […]