Friday, June 15, 2007

Charlie's Aviation Milestone!

Yesterday, June 15th, 2007 I did my first solo short cross-country flight from Austin to Lockhart and back. It was truly my first time on my own. (No instructor on the ground watching me with a radio). Photo on the left is Austin's airport and
the photo on the right is Lockhart, Texas

I was full of apprehension driving to the airport. Thinking about the building cumulus clouds 100 miles to the north, etc. But when I got to the airplane and started my pre-flight procedures my tension subsided...everything was routine checklists, etc. Called Clearance Delivery for a transponder code, called Ground Control for taxi instructions, called Tower for takeoff clearance, called Departure and checked in with them as I flew out of controlled airspace towards Lockhart, TX.

It was HOT. I taxied with both windows open and one arm hanging out each window and steering with the rudder pedals. (you can do that in an Aerobat because of it's cozy cockpit).

The flight was bumpy due to thermals. Final approach was also bumpy and the blacktop pavement of the Lockhart runway tends to give you a slight thermal boost as you pass from the grassy area to the asphalt. Otherwise everthing went smoothly.

It was a great confidence builder to do my first little "XC" on my own!
What an experience! I shant forget!

Next time I'll shoot for a early morning flight before the thermals get cooking.
I have 41 hours now.


Anonymous Anonymous said...

I can only hope you pulled your arms back into the cockpit b4 you took off ...

1:56 PM  
Blogger Charlie Thompson said...

Yes I pulled them back in...and latched the windows!

11:18 PM  

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