More Review

On this flight, we worked mostly on getting back into flying. We took off and headed out to the onion fields to practice maneuvers on a windy day. Starting off with slow-flight, I need to remember that I need a lot of power in order to make up for the loss with everything else that is happening. With steep turns, I was fine when I was keeping my nose level, not sinking or climbing. The wind made maneuvers harder to do, so I just need to forget about them while they happen. I was fine during stall work, I just need to remember to fly the airplane at all times. As we headed back, the wind was too much to practice landings, so we landed at Caldwell and went inside to work on my ground work.  I am looking forward to my next flight where I can practice landings and prepare for my solo!

Final Review

On this flight, we did a final review of everything that I have learned since I am doing my pre-solo stage check for my next flight. We took off and I immediately felt the force of the wind rock the aircraft back and forth. I learned that if you let the aircraft just fly and try not to overcorrect the wind, there will be a much smoother flight. When we practiced steep turns, I needed to remember that I should bug a spot on my compass so that I know where I have finished my 360. I lost altitude on the second turn and immediately pulled on the stick to regain altitude, but I should have gradually ascended since I was still conforming with the PTS. Next, we did the slow flight with no issues and a power off stall that was done well. I need to remember to actually stall the plane on a power on stall because I tend to think that when the nose is all the way up, it’s a stall, but you need to feel the sink in the stall so that you actually stall the plane. On landings, I was able to correct everything and make smooth landings, I just need to remember to not shove the throttle all the way in as to save the engine. I made smooth landings and am looking forward to my stage check.

Cumulative Review

On this flight, we did a cumulative review of everything that I learned in flight training so far. We started off with me dialling the radios, which I need to learn the different frequencies. Next, we taxied and took off as normal to the west learning that the reservoir marks the end of the Bravo allowing us to climb to cruise altitude. Once, over the onion fields, we did our pre-maneuver checklist which is the same as the pre-landing checklist. As I did steep turns, for clearing turns, I remembered the sight of the window which allowed me to maintain the proper altitude and bank. We practiced both types of stalls twice in order to perfect them. I need to remember that the plane will not fall and to not be scared during stalls. We finished up the maneuvers with slow flight which I need to remember that a lot of power is needed to maintain altitude. As we headed back to Greenwood Lake, we practiced an emergency landing with the A-G checklist and then headed to Greenwood Lake to practice landings. For my next flight, I need to focus on my flying and being aware of the airplane.

Perfecting Landings

After my two month hiatus due to school work, I returned to flying. We worked on landings out of Caldwell and they were a lot of fun. I learned how to practice using the radios and how the big dial is for the big numbers and the little dial is for the little numbers. It was cool to actually be able to tune my own radios and I was in charge of the radios for the entire flight. It was weird that when we taxied to Runway 4, we had to turn left instead of right which I was used too, which forced me to be more vigilant on the radios. I think that the pattern procedure was much easier this flight. We took off, climbed at 80 to 800, turned left, got to 1200, turned left, did our prelanding checklist. At midfield, we radioed the tower for landing clearance. Then at the numbers,  we slowed to 1700 rpm maintained level flight to get into the white arc, added 10 degrees of flaps and turned left. After stabilizing our course, we went to 20 degrees and turned final. On final, we dumped the flaps and flew the airplane at 65 to the runway. Two things that I need to remember for next time are: let the plane naturally sink before flaring and just listen to the controllers.

Flying with CFI Dave like a Champ

On this flight, I flew with Dave like a champ because Tomaharu was away. It had been a month since I was in the air because of scheduling conflicts between Tomaharu and me. The first thing that I noticed was that the teaching styles of the two were different. Tomaharu was much more relaxed while Dave kept asking questions. My normal preflight went fine, even though one of the fuel gauges was off. Through a different set of eyes, I learned that I was taxiing to fast, as it should be at the pace of a fast walk, and that was immediately fixed. As we took off, I learned to climb out at 80 kts so that in the case of an emergency, we would have more altitude to work with. Dave kept asking me questions to ensure that my knowledge was up to standard. I was nervous at first, but as time progressed I became more confident and answered the questions more. We practiced slow flight where I had a little trouble maintaining altitude and learned that I need to be more aggressive with the power in order to make corrections. Otherwise, my slow flight worked well. There was a problem with the flaps that they would return to 10 degrees after we put them down all the way, but that only happened once. We then flew the pattern at Greenwood Lake. I learned that making shallow turns is key and that I don’t have to turn to my downwind right away, only when I have reached the right separation between me and the airport. Lastly, I learned that nailing my airspeeds was the key to good landings. I want to be at 80 kts on my downwind turn, 70 kts on my crosswind turn, and 65 kts on my final. If it is windy, 70 kts is fine, but I should never go under 60 kts. I learned that I should fly the airplane normally and allow the speeds reach where they are since the wind has an effect on them, and they will gradually go where they need to go. We did a couple landings, and they continually got better. After that, we turned back to CDW and landed and Dave gave me my last pointers. Power is altitude and pitch is airspeed, and that I want to be like a glider, right before I touch down.

Greenwood Lake

So on my last flight, we continued to work on landings at Greenwood Lake Airport. I have been to this place for airshows, but have never flown there, so it was very cool. I took a small hiatus in between because of a tough schedule that I had as well as the schedule of the planes.

New York

On my last flight, we had to take 1JD up to Orange County Airport because of the UN, and couldn’t fly in  the airspace by Caldwell. We flew the pattern many times, and my landings continually got better. I had a lot of fun on this flight. I even got to see a C-130 taking off from Stewart. I can’t wait until my next flight.

More Landings!

The day before the flight, the weather said that it was going to rain all day, but in the morning, it was only cloudy, so we decided to go on with the flight. Preflighting 53R , I saw water on the windshield from the rain overnight, but things started to clear, so we continued. We flew out towards the onion fields, and did some of the coolest flying that I have experienced. We flew right above the clouds, and when I looked up, all I saw was blue, and when I looked down, all I saw was white. It made me feel like an airline pilot that flies through the clouds. After demonstrating some maneuvers, we headed to Morristown where we practiced landing. It was a different experience because Morristown is a Left Traffic compared to a Right Traffic airport. It was cool to see the Jets Practice Facility too, even though they weren’t there. After a couple of increasingly improving landings, we headed back and landed at Caldwell after a fun flight.


This flight we went over landings. I was in a different plane today, although it was the same make and model. Instead of the red N811JD, I was in 53R. The airplane was still a Cessna 172M, but it felt a lot different. We had trouble starting the plane, so Tom, the owner, had to come and help us out. Once we got started, we taxied to Runway 22, and we took off. My CFI flew the first pattern around the airport, teaching me what to do. I learned that after takeoff, climb to 600 ft above the airport, and turn 90 degrees to the right. After checking if the turn was clear, make another 90 degree turn for the runway. While flying across the runway, Tomaharu handled the radio, while I climbed to 1000 ft over the airport. Once I reached 1200 ft, since the airport is about 200 ft high, I leveled off and slowed to 2000 rpm. Once abeam the numbers, I decreased power to 1700 rpm, put in 10 degrees of flaps, and started a 500 ft per minute descent. Once I was 200 ft below the traffic pattern, we turned and put in 20 degrees of flaps. Finally, we were able to see the numbers and made our last 30 degree turn to final. This is when we put in the rest of our flaps, while trying to get the speed at a constant of 75 mph. I learned that if we wanted to go faster, I had to use the yoke, but if I wanted to change the speed of descent, I had to use the throttle to control it. When we had crossed the runway thresh hold, we cut power and let the plane bleed out its airspeed. The plane had a natural tendency to point up at the end, and that indicated that we were ready to land it. After doing about 7 landings, we called it a day and headed back home. Although none of my landings were perfect, I improved everytime, and I look forward to my next lesson.

Before landing, we used the checklist, LCGUMPS:

G- Gas

Back into Flying

After taking a two month hiatus from flying due to high school I was finally back into the it. Being the aspiring aviator that I am, all I wanted to do was to fly, but school came first, and I needed to focus on finishing my final exams so that I could focus on flying over the summer. As I was preflighting, the smell of avgas came back to me. The smell that always reminded me of soy sauce floated through the air as we refueled the aircraft. When my CFI told me to make the call to the tower, I was nervous, but I tried it anyway. As I made the call, I messed up the wordings, but the ATC was nice about it, and let me finish. We took-off, and I remember noting how different it was to see the green grass rather than the white snow that I was accustomed to. We reviewed slow-flight and steep-turns, and than my CFI said the word that scared me most about flying, “Stalls”. He showed me the way to do them, and how to break the natural instinct to recover, and recover the right way. I was really scared the first time, but when I did them on my own, they were really fun, and I wanted to do more. As we turned around to head back, my CFI suddenly pulled the throttle and told me that we were going to do a simulated emergency procedure. We went over the ABC checklist as we glided above the onion fields.

A- airspeed
B- best landing spot

We completed that and headed back to Caldwell to our landing after completing a successful flight.