Flight 8: Pattern work (5/1/14)

Note: I’ve moved my blog!  You can find this post here.

This lesson we did more touch-and-gos in crosswinds.

I did a little better than my last lesson, but the wind made it a challenge.  There was less gusting and more of a consistent, strong wind, and on the first landing I had to get used to crabbing into the wind.  Academically I know why I need to crab into the wind, but when you’re in a plane it feels disorienting to be pointed ~15 degrees away from the runway centerline (into the wind) and see yourself still tracking the ground in a straight line.

Another result of the wind was that on my first few base-to-final turns I overshot the runway because I didn’t account for wind.  When I began turning earlier I was able to come out mostly lined up.

Tom mentioned that, paradoxically, being more relaxed during landing would help me get better.  He jests that I have a “vulcan death grip” on the yoke, and we practiced rolling into turns and gentle descents and climbs to show how “gentle” you can be while still controlling the aircraft.  Since you have less fine motor control when you’re gripping the yoke for dear life, your control motions cannot be as fluid as if you had a more relaxed grip.  Additionally, you are more prone to overcorrecting and creating pilot-induced oscillations.

Logbook Entry N811JD (C172)

Flight Details

Pattern work