Today was a beautiful day to fly; there wasn’t a cloud in the sky and the winds were low. Before the flight Bob said that after my last flight (before thanksgiving) he felt comfortable flying to Andover to practice some real short fields (It has a 2000′ runway as opposed to Caldwell’s 4500 and 3700). Bob didn’t want me to use VORs to navigate and pointed out that there were power lines running from CDW to andover so we decided to follow the power lines after taking off. The takeoff was smooth and uneventful and we intercepted the power lines after flying around Morristown’s airspace. On our way to andover Bob pulled the power on me to simulate an engine failure so I picked out a field (Bob told me it actually used to be a grass strip afterwards) and made one circle to get lower and made an approach. We were a little high when we aborted the approach (we didn’t want to get to low) but I think if it was an actual emergency I could have pulled it off with some S-turns flaps or slip. When we got to andover we did 2 landings which were pretty good (no go-arounds). The first one I was able to pull off at the last taxiway (with smooth touchdown) and the second I was able to pull off on the center taxiway (also with a smooth touchdown but this time in only 1000′ of runway). Andover was a cool little airport (very scenic especially on such a beautiful day) and when we were taking off we saw a small STOL piper cub with a cool paint job taking off on the grass on the side of the runway. On our way we tracked route 80 back to caldwell, avoiding morristown’s airspace as we got close to the airport. My landing at Caldwell was also a short field with a pretty smooth touchdown and we were able to land on the second taxiway (B). Over all it was a great flight and I feel a lot more comfortable with short fields now. Bob gave us a bit of a bittersweet piece of news today, telling us that he had gotten a job at a regional airline and he will be transitioning out of being a flight instructor at Fischer. I am very happy that he is going commercial (an exciting transition) but I am also a little sad that I probably won’t be able to be my flight instructor after he gets the job (although he might take some instructional flights at Fischer once in a while). Anyways, I didn’t get a GPS track of the flight so that’s all there is.
Logbook Entry 811JD (C172)
Pilotage, No Tower Operations, Traffic Pattern, Short Field take-off/landings