I just had my first solo! That was awesome. And it all comes packaged with some memorable events.
I think I was scaring Tom a bit before the solo when the landings weren’t all too smooth. They were consistently high and fast, but we got the kinks out of that.
He asked me if I wanted to go off alone, and of course I said yes. So, I dropped him off on a taxiway, gave him my camera, and I was off.
I was still on the tower frequency and asked for taxi to the runway. Oops. Then, when holding short I forgot to switch back to tower. Oops again. Alright, but those weren’t any major mishaps.
First Takeoff and Landing
My first takeoff off of Runway 4 was good. I started turning crosswind 300 ft below pattern altitude. When I look out to the left, I realized, “Wow, I’m still really close to the airport”. No kidding about the ‘plane being much lighter’ thing. On landing, I had a similar issue. The plane kept floating and floating and the runway kept getting shorter and shorter, so I decided to go around. My first real landing worked out better. I was a bit rough, but manageable.
Second Takeoff and Landing
The second takeoff was a bit wobbly. Over-compensation in the rudder seemed to make it go left and right a few times. That was fixed. I let it reach pattern altitude before turning crosswind. Much better.
The approach was a pretty steady, but the landing was a bit rough again. My landing also delayed another plane coming in on a straight final. Oh well.
Third Takeoff and Landing
Third time’s a charm. And it was. The takeoff was good and the landing was smooth. I played ‘keep the nose wheel off the runway’ and it seemed to work.
And that’s it! Some pictures afterwards, a certificate, and the satisfaction of flying a plane on my own.
By the way.. it was a gorgeous day. Little wind, not very hot, awesome.
Plane: N272LP (C172)