Lesson 16 – More Crosswinds

Today was suppose to be my second solo flight… The gods weren’t agreeing though. It was simple really, the Air Australia policy is that it must be 8 knots or less for a pre-GFPT student to fly. With a solid 12 knots blowing with a direction of 120 degrees, directly across runway 24 right, the active circuits runway, it was a no go. If only it was runway 12, it would have been fine. So we decided to do cross wind circuit practice. However there was another twist, when our Cessna 152 fired up, the VHF radio stopped working. Faarrrrrrk! No radio, no flying. The worst thing, with Air Australia getting busier, there was zero chance of getting into the other 152 this weekend.

The one pay off was I got to watch Josh play his last tee-ball game for the season 🙂

About lunch time I got a call to say the 152 was back online. There was a chance for a 3pm flight. So briefly my hopes of getting the second solo done were raised. However when I checked the forecast, it was 25 knots with a 15 knot maximum crosswind. So, I went up with Adam and we did cross wind circuits. Nothing brilliant, but we did 5 touch and go’s and a full stop. It is always good fun flying in bumpy conditions and I had a big smile. Its in these conditions that you come to really appreciate the steep approach angles, side gusts and the significant extra power you need heading into the wind. This is where looking down the runway is important when you land, not out the window, because with strong wind, ground speed is very slow, despite still having good air speed. The same applies on takeoff, ground speed is only 35 knots, yet with the wind your still doing 60 knots and get airborne easily.

After we were all said and done, looking to book in 2 or 3 hours next weekend wasn’t going to happen either, even with a small gap to get the plane, Adam isn’t available. So looks like its down to a single hour next week and with a differnt instructor. This is going to take forever, grrr…

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