6 touch-and-goes in the 152 today.

The school's stock photo of the 152
The school’s photo of the 152

I don’t really know what to add to that statement because it is so standard. Takeoff, do a rectangle, land, repeat.

An 11am lesson on FAI fall weekdays is absolutely perfect. Had the entire airport to myself. It only started getting busy just as I rolled off the runway for a full stop. Most of the ice had melted by late morning (only a few small icy puddles still around at the airport), and the small plane-space-heater had time to make it nice and toasty.

I’m flying with yet another instructor (CFI5) while CFI2 is doing a little medical recovery. Pretty supportive guy. Had to ask CFI1 for my height-pillow today which was kinda awkward when he assumed I’d be flying with him. I love CFI1 as a person, but he is way too nice, not critical enough when I do something wrong. I’d rather be yelled at (yes, I know, me have brain problems).

We were using 2R today which means right turns in the pattern and having to look over the instructor to see the runway. My turns were mostly coordinated today, which is of great relief to me šŸ˜€

For me personally, the first couple of descents felt way too fast although the airspeed, altitude, and descent rate were actually spot on. I think today’s practice helped me get over the “I’m going to crash feeling.”


And here is where I may get myself into some mental trouble. The student just before me this morning started flight school a little after I did. She is on hour 6 I think…and she started touch and goes today. I finished at hour 11.5 today. I know, it isn’t fair to compare myself to others (especially since she’s probably gone flying with her husband a lot, so she probably has had lots of time to work on all the intro maneuvers it took me so long to fight through)…but it was really hard for me to be all happy for her. Jealousy: my biggest problem in life – and I will continue to work through it.


Things to work on:

  • I never use the trim wheel…for anything. I know I should but it still feels so unnecessary. I keep thinking: “I’ve got it.”
  • I probably need to extend my crosswind leg because my downwind leg is consistently way close to the runway.
  • Pattern altitude for Fairbanks is 1500ft MSL. Towards the end of my flight hour, I kept creeping up to 1600 before finally leveling off. Of course, I always reached 1500 during crosswind, just as I started my turn to downwind – so there was a lot going on. Extending crosswind will probably be my best bet.
  • I only mistook 2L for 2R once today (corrections made in time to land properly). This made me nervous though, so then I consistently turned to final too early.
  • CFI5 tells me that the oscillations I do just before touchdown are due to me being too lenient (slow) with the controls. My airspeed, altitude, rudder, and left/right aileron deflection directions were fine, but I need to make sharper, more confident movements.
  • Once I accidentally took off with full carburetor heat and flaps. Do not like! Weird sinking feeling. The 152 has enough power for this but the 150 probably won’t.
  • And the bane of my existence: staying on the centerline during takeoffs and landings. I don’t believe I’ve ever stayed on the line in my entire 11.5 hours. My salvation: practice, practice, practice. Boo. šŸ™‚

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