May 5, 2004

Night Flight to Uncontrolled Airport

Because I believe in challenges I planned my second lesson at night, or 'cause that was the available time. But I am glad I did, as this evening was a beautiful night to fly.

After pre-flighting the aircraft on my own, my instructor and I taxied out and took off to the Lunken practice area. We spent about 25 minutes going through the things I learned last week. For the most part I retained most those learnings. So it was time to try something new. We had Clermont County Airport on the horizon. Clermont is an uncontrolled airport and the home of Sporty's Pilot Shop. My Certified Flight Instructor (CFI) explained how to communicate our intentions to enter the pattern and land to our fellow pilots in the area. I almost seemed more confusing than talking to a controlled environment.

We did one pass of the airport then entered the pattern and prepared to land on runway 22. As a smaller airport, the runways are much more narrow which kept giving me the false impression that we were higher than we were. But we made a nice approach then performed a touch and go.

After departing Clermont, we headed back to Lunken. This time my instructor asked me to call in for tower clearance to return to Lunken. I did not expect to be tongue-tied but by the time I was done with my request there was no doubt I was a beginner. But the tower personel were very friendly. This will be an area I will continue to practice on.

I handled the descent and approach to Lunken. I am becoming much more comfortable in the pattern and preparing for a landing. Before I always felt like I needed my CFI to take over to complete the landing. This time I felt like I had it going perfectly and she let me bring it down with minimal support. It felt really great.

As expected I cannot wait to get back out. But I will not be heading back up until Tuesday.

Posted by at May 5, 2004 11:23 PM