Crosswind?, Short Field, Soft Field

Fairbanks weather has been gorgeous, 70F and sunny…until today. Today, it snowed. During my flight, light rainy mist.

Fair bit of crosswind at PAFA too – rare for us. Theoretically perfect to practice crosswind takeoffs and landings.

Because Alaska has mostly thawed, all local unpaved airstrips are ‘soft’ – hence it’s a good time to work on soft field takeoff/landings. (I’m recalling a certain incident a few weeks ago where a certain someone landed on mud at local Metro field. I believe he said it was like landing on velcro…and someone had to go pick him up in a car. Runway was closed and plane had to be left there until the mud dried)

CFI1 also decided to have me practice short field procedures.

Almost every time I turned to final, the crosswind over the runway would disappear…yet crosswind was noticeable on all other legs. Hm. Guess I’ll get my crosswind practice in another day.

My short field takeoffs/landings tend to be too fast of speed – I need to work on maintaining that 54kts for the 152. My landings weren’t terrible but CFI1 stressed that they would improve faster if I would learn to make my landing steps more consistent.

Giant birds all over the airport today! Scary! Especially that pair of large white seagull-looking birds that flew across my path during takeoff. I hope the flocks migrate over to Creamers Field soon.

We were working on runway 2R today and CFI1 felt my work was good enough to land on an actual ‘soft’ runway, ski2. It was strange to turn base in the middle of 2R. I’d be too scared to land by myself on an actual (gravel) soft field for many, many more piloting hours (for fear or damaging the propeller), but it was a good exercise.




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