In this lesson I was with Bob again but in N5253R (N811JD was booked). We decided to stay in the pattern to work on my flat landings. To do this Bob told me to do soft field landings (where you flare but add power to stay in ground effect before touching down so you can choose your touchdown spot). The first 2 were pretty bad (I touched down before the spot) but the 3rd was right on the spot. We then saw Tom land and turn off on the first taxiway (the taxiway we took off on) so we decided to do some short fields. My short fields were pretty bad in the beginning but they started to get pretty good towards the end. My last landing, however, I was going way too slow. I guess I just need to keep practicing to find the perfect airspeed and glideslope to pull off a true short field (like Tom’s). One things for sure though – I would much rather be fast and high than low and slow. I can always go around (like I did in lesson 30) but recovering from a stall 100 feet above the ground isn’t so easy.
This lesson was my first lesson in a long time (since March) and my first lesson with Bob in even longer. We began the lesson catching up and reviewing what I’ve done while he’s been gone. We then decided to go to Greenwood lake airport to practice some short field landings and flight maneuvers. We took off normally (although my ground operations were a little rusty; I forgot to put down the flaps before the preflight and take out the controls lock) and headed north to Greenwood lake. My entry of the pattern started out normally but I didn’t space myself from the airport properly so I entered the pattern high and fast. I wasn’t able to correct this and sure enough I was way high on short final so I decided to call my first unprompted (from the tower) go-around. We did two more landings at Greenwood lake and they weren’t terrible but they were very flat (not on the nosewheel but close to it). We then exited the pattern and flew back to Caldwell. My landing at Caldwell was also abnormally flat. The main lessons I took from this flight were to make sure you enter the pattern at the right altitude and airspeed (for the quality of the landing as well as more safety from collisions with other aircraft) and to make sure I touchdown on the main wheels well before the nosewheel.