Flight Lesson 24: Crosswind Landing Practice

It initially looked like today’s lesson would be canceled due to the cloud cover being below the minimums.  However, things cleared up reasonably well for us to do some pattern work thus avoiding the thunderstorm cells to the north.

Runway 4 was in use using left traffic and a left crosswind was blowing across the runway at 10 knots steady, with gusts up to 15.  Due to the wind, I used a maximum of 20 degrees of flaps to avoid us being pushed around by gusts.  This meant higher approach speeds and I found it more difficult to get the plane on the ground after leveling off over the runway.  I need to remember to be patient and let airspeed bleed off before flaring.  The majority of landings were performed using crabbing for crosswind correction.  I did attempt to use the sideslip method once.

My ground track was sloppy as I didn’t do the best job trying to correct for the crosswind.  The method for keeping the ground track straight is to bank into the wind along with rudder to keep it coordinated.

One interesting occurrence of note was a helicopter that flew straight in for runway 4 from outside the pattern while we were making the turn from base to final.  The helicopter failed to report a 2 mile final yet ATC still gave them permission to land.  We were getting to close to the chopper so Tom told me to perform a go around.

During one of the circuits, around the pattern, ATC instructed us to come to a full stop landing since they were changing traffic from Runway 4 to 22.  We then departed using runway 22.

During the lesson debrief, Tom mentioned the return of my death grip on the yoke.  Soft and smooth movements are what I need to be doing.