- Fly at least 100 hours (do all GA pilots say this?)
- Fly at least 15 hours at night
- Fly at least 70 cross-country hours
- Complete my instrument rating.
- Complete Complex Endorsement and required transition training in our club's Arrow.
My other times for the year look like this:
- Time for 2013: 142.1 hours
- Total Instrument Time: 69.2 hours
- Simulated instrument time: 39.3 hours.
- Actual Instrument Time: 26.9 hours
- Simulator Time: 2.9 hours
- 100 total Approaches
- 67 Simulated Approaches
- 26 in Actual IMC
- 7 in the simulators
- Total time as of 12/31/13: 273.1 hours
Other Major Accomplishments and Notable Events
- Completed three WINGS phases
- Added a total of three airplanes to my "fleet:" A Piper Archer III, A Piper Arrow IV (although the club's newly acquired Arrow is an Arrow III), and a Diamond Star DA-40. Each of these planes has something to commend it, but I will say that I am most comfortable in the Arrow. It's the most stable of these planes in my view, and I may be biased since I had far more time in it than the other two combined.
- Gave three first flights - Flying Shrink's Mama, The Old Marine, and Killer.
- Landed at many new airports: KVYS (Illinois Valley/Peru); KUNU (Dodge County, WI); KCMI (Champaign, IL); 1G0 (Wood County, OH); KFDY (Findley, OH); KOVS (Boscobel, WI); I68 (Warren County, OH); KAXQ (Clarion, PA); KFIG (Clearfield, PA); KXLL (Queen City/Allentown, PA); C09 (Morris, IL); 39N (Princeton, NJ); KALO (Waterloo, IA); KLUK (Lunken/Cincinnati, OH); and KSQI (Whiteside County, IL). The most important to me though was KDUJ (DuBois, PA). As I mentioned before, this airport was built on my great-grandparents' farm.
- Added four states: Pennsylvania, Ohio, New Jersey, and Iowa.
- I made a number of longer cross country flights that offered plenty of learning. I wrote about a few of them previously (flying to PA for my grandmother's funeral, family vacation). A few others of note:
- I had a very difficult IMC flight from KDPA to KLUK in October. I went to Cincinnati for three days of continuing education sponsored by the American Academy of Forensic Psychology, which is of course the best excuse ever to fly. I spent a solid 1.5 hours without seeing anything except the instrument panel. I also had the pleasure of 50 knots straight on the nose for a whopping 80 knot ground speed on a TAS of 130. That flight was no joke. It was taking a lot longer than advertised, and because the plane was only fueled to tabs I was beginning to think I was going to have a fuel problem. I had plenty of landing options, and was very carefully considering my fuel burn.
- I put the family in a Skyhawk to fly from KDPA to I68 so that we could visit friends in Cincinnati. I had calculated the weight and balance, and again when I got back on the ground. Despite being properly trimmed the plane jumped off the runway at about 45 knots with the stall horn blaring. That's not cool. I quickly put the nose in a less aggressive climb attitude and rough trimmed. It turns out yelling "oh, s***" is a very unwelcome utterance with non-pilot passengers. We also had to leave earlier as we had to beat in some thunderstorms.
- I took a flight out to Waterloo, IA just because.
Goals for 2014
It feels like it would be pretty hard to top this year. However, I do have a few things to shoot for:
- Fly at least 110 hours (this feels like a downgrade from last year...)
- Fly at least 70 hours of cross country time
- 20 hours of night flying
- Begin training for the Commercial SEL.
- Taking after Steve, I want to lose an hour's worth of fuel from my waist. I've been griping about planes and their weight and balance limitations, and honestly I am the biggest culprit over which I have any control. Hard stuff, but I have a few "incentives" for myself. At unspoken intervals:
- Transition training for something speedy and better useful load. I am considering an SR-22 for this, but I'm a bit perplexed by some of the things I'm reading about safety, ease of overcontrol particularly in the pattern, and the like. I have also found a place that rents a V-tail Bonanza, but it fits me like a sardine can.
- Take some upset recovery training.
- THIS. 'Nuff said.... other than we are talking a lesson.
- A few other goals that are harder to quantify:
- Improving stick and rudder skills - seems they degrade some when you focus on instrument training. Mine are not bad, but I want them sharper.
- Continuing to stay even further ahead of the airplane
- Spend time in the simulator drilling things that just do not make sense in the airplane. During my last session, I had a near total loss of engine power in IMC. We'd have lived, and Fort Wayne would have needed a new fence.
- Complete at least two charity benefit flights. There is always Pilots and Paws, but after crossing the 250 hours PIC time I can get involved in Lifeline Pilots. I should cross that threshold soon.