Saturday, July 6, 2013

Second Dual Cross Country!

     On 7/3/13, I did my second dual cross country flight with my instructor, Joe. This time, I had already planned out the flight to Marysville(KMRT), so after a quick brief we were ready to go. Because of some mechanical issues, I had to switch to Stewart's C172, N2814L, instead of the C150. I can't say I was mad...

     The airplane was short on fuel so I filled it up after a routine pre-flight. When I went out to do my run up and CIGAR checklist the winds were favoring 26, but they flip flopped within those few minutes so I had to taxi all the way down to 8. Once in the air, I immediately turned on course after reaching a same altitude and spotted my first checkpoint, Caesar's creek. I climbed to 5,500ft for a smooth ride and to take advantage of the huge tailwind and followed the rest of my checkpoints to Marysville without any issues. The AWOS reported winds out of the Southeast, as expected, so I entered the downwind for runway 27. The landing was probably the best I had so far since first flying the C172  for the first time the lesson before. (Not to brag or anything haha)

Route plotted on

     We had some time, so Joe and I tied down the plane and ventured inside to relax for a bit before heading home. There were a few nice pilots we chatted with in there for a bit, then decided to head back out to the airplane. Unlike the trip there, I remembered to set up my GoPro(The footage is down below). During start up, we noticed a strange noise when the starter was engaged. However, it started fine and the engine was running as normal. The winds were unchanged, so I taxied back to runway 27. During the run up, Joe and I double checked the gauges and listened for any noise and were thankful not to find anything abnormal.

My video of the return trip from my GoPro HD Hero 2

     After takeoff, I began a turn to what I thought was on course. However, I realized after passing adjacent to my first checkpoint that I was a few miles west than I should have been. I corrected for it and the rest of the flight went smoothly. Initially, I climbed to 6,500ft on the return trip but the GPS was showing a horrendous 70kt groundspeed due to those southeasterly winds. I descended back down to 4,500ft hoping for something better but the winds were still hitting us hard, and we were almost in the clouds. So, I returned to 6.500ft for the rest of the flight.

     On approach into runway 8, I noticed a tractor on the runway(Only in Ohio would that happen...). I continued my approach and thankfully the tractor was near the opposite end of the runway by the time I was on short final. I did a little slip and tried to land early to leave as much room as possible so I would not have to go around.

     Next lesson will be either another cross country or soloing in the C172. Either way, stay tuned!

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