This Month's Scenario

11. Which Way to Yellowstone?

It’s a perfect day for a flight to Yellowstone National Park, but the choice of route is anything but clear. Will you go high or low? Will you go direct or take one of the long ways around? How will you weigh the risks and benefits for a flight out and back in the high […]

10. No Leg to Stand On

Instructors
Paul Bertorelli
One risk of retractable-gear aircraft is that the wheels might not come down no matter what you do. Now you’re faced with picking the kind of gear-up landing you prefer: two wheels or none, grass or pavement? Don’t think this one is just for retract pilots. Gear issues happen in all airplanes.
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8. Pattern Problems in Astoria

Instructors
Sarah Fritts
The winds are favoring one runway, but the other pilots are using a different runway and a crosswind one at that. Will you forgo the normal traffic pattern entry and fly a straight-in, attempt a normal traffic pattern entry, or go against the flow of traffic and land on the runway no one else is […]
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7. Aromatic Issues Over St. Louis

Instructors
Tom Turner
Fire might be the most terrifying thing a pilot can face. Even the possibility of a fire is enough to warrant an immediate diversion. But what if the nearest place has no assurance of landing, and the surest one is practically your destination anyway? And what if it’s not fire but just the smell of […]
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6. Crossed Up at Four Corners

Instructors
Paul Bertorelli
Sport planes and a Sport Pilot Certificate can be tools for real travel by air, with a few limitations. There’s no night flight, usually no instrument flight, and light wing loading can make turbulence challenging. That means creativity might be required to complete the mission—or sometimes just to get back on the ground.
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5. All the Way to Jackson

Instructors
Dave Hirschman
Difficult situations can crop up on beautiful days and without anything actually going wrong. In fact, these might be the most insidious of traps because they lure you in. Watch how a series of reasonable decisions creates a tough conundrum. How would you handle a situation where every option leaves you feeling uncomfortable?
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4. A Short-Field Barbecue

Instructors
Tom Turner
A day of fair-weather flying, tailwinds, and an on-airport restaurant with the tastiest barbecue in the county: What could be better? The after-lunch departure, however, leaves you deciding between departing uphill and upwind, downhill and downwind. Trees off one runway end complicate matters further. Don’t wait too long; this fair weather won’t last.
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3. Squeeze Play in Arkansas

Instructors
Richard McSpadden
VFR into IMC might be the deadliest trap for non-instrument pilots. It’s easy to say you’d just turn around, but the reality of cross-country flying is that deteriorating weather lures even the most resolute souls when it occurs slowly, and with tempting options–that can vanish in moments if the conditions are right.
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1. Holiday in Montpelier

Instructors
Hobie Tomlinson
A weekend reunion with family is only one short flight away. After a delayed start, things seem on track: You have the airport in sight from miles away, winds are right down the runway, all the airplane gauges are in the green. Yet something doesn’t seem right. What’s that little voice inside trying to tell […]
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