A Flight I'll Never Forget
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Take in unique flying experiences as told by our authors. Unforgettable Flights will take you inside the cockpits of fighter jets, on board legendary aircraft, and to spectacular locations around the globe.
Tuesday, June 25, 2013
Wings To Fly
A paraplegic’s tenacious journey to the skies
My name is Peter Pretorius. My life began in November of 1959 when I entered the world as a healthy seven-pound boy.
Tuesday, May 21, 2013
A momentous final approach to a new beginning
In my first year at University, I met the most beautiful girl I could dream of, both in personality and character.
Tuesday, September 4, 2012
Hudson River Adventure
Expanding your comfort zone
We all know pilots who limit their flights to a hop to a nearby airport for lunch or an occasional pancake breakfast.
Tuesday, July 17, 2012
Training Is Everything
Mental preparation will help you manage an emergency procedure
At exactly 5:45 a.m. on March 5, 2010, I took off in my 1972 Grumman Traveler from Canada's St-Hyacinthe Airport (CSU3), on the south shore off Montreal.
Tuesday, June 19, 2012
East Coast By LSA
Twenty-five hours in a Remos GX
Being obsessed with flying ever since I could walk, I had my eyes set on becoming an airline pilot.
Tuesday, May 22, 2012
A Pilot’s View
We're 45 minutes out of Daytona Beach bound for Key West on a summer evening. Viewed from our altitude, the sun has just begun its dip below the horizon, leaving us in muted daylight as darkness settles across the land below.
Tuesday, April 24, 2012
From Soccer To Cessna
A four-country flying adventure in Africa
How do you top an unforgettable trip to the FIFA World Cup in South Africa? Throw in a Cessna 182 and a dozen exotic locations in four countries, and voilà!
Tuesday, August 9, 2011
Pressure’s On...Or Is It?
Diving into the aerobatic box for the first time
It's 95 degrees, and sweat is dripping down my face. The box suddenly seems impossibly small.
Tuesday, July 5, 2011
Sharing General Aviation
The $418 hamburger that was well worth it
Working for Uncle Sam in Naples, Italy, prevents me from often seeing my family in the U.S.
Tuesday, May 10, 2011
A solo adventure in the Alaska bush
The little Piper PA-22 lifts off in a fraction of the runway at Council (K29), 60 miles east-northeast of Nome in western Alaska.
Tuesday, April 5, 2011
Always A Student
Reflections of a first solo flight, thousands of hours later
Would today be the day? I had been taking lessons for several weeks, and I knew that one day soon, my instructor Andy would get out of the airplane, and let me fly solo. I had even worn a special T-shirt for the last three lessons, with the hope that each time, I would get to solo.
Tuesday, March 8, 2011
Canada By Cub
A teenager’s 3,000 nm solo journey from the Yukon to Quebec
I’m the kind of guy who’s not scared to try new things. When I would fly my RC plane, I always thought how nice it would be to sit behind the controls and have freedom.
Tuesday, February 8, 2011
There And Back
Around Australia, solo in a Jabiru
I had long aspired to circumnavigate Australia, but time and opportunity had proved evasive until recently.
Tuesday, December 21, 2010
Puerto Rico To Provo
More than three decades later, a dream comes true
At age 34, I added a flying trip to my dream list. It was a fly-in of 20 planes to Providenciales (nicknamed “Provo”) in the Turks and Caicos, an archipelago of nearly 49 islands and desert cays just 35 miles southeast of the Bahamas.
Tuesday, November 2, 2010
Where General Aviation Shines
The rewards of sharing flight with loved ones
Shortly after getting my pilot’s license in 1992, I took all of my family members up, one at a time, for an aerial tour of Jacksonville, Fla.
Tuesday, October 5, 2010
Bitter temperatures and a race against time
It was discovered last September that my open-cockpit biplane, a Starduster Too, needed an engine overhaul.
Tuesday, September 7, 2010
Taking Command Of Your First Plane
The Bellanca that could not be resisted
It started at Disneyland, holding my daughter Elena’s hand, when my cell phone rang.
Tuesday, August 3, 2010
Canyonlands By Cherokee
Learning the Utah backcountry
In 2007 I had been going to Moab, Utah, for four years—hiking, running and sightseeing—and I was 20 years a pilot with my own Cherokee 140.
Tuesday, July 6, 2010
From Russia With Love
Soloing a Yak 50
The Yak 50 is a single-engine, single-seat, low-wing, semi-retractable, conventional-gear aerobatic aircraft designed in 1973 by the Yakovlev Design Bureau in Russia. It’s an honest, friendly airplane—if somewhat extraordinary because of its country of origin.
Tuesday, June 8, 2010
A Pure Form Of Flying
Stick and rudder in a glider
It was a beautiful spring day, and I was a newly minted CFI full of confidence and enthusiasm.
Tuesday, May 4, 2010
The Chicago Air & Water Show
Inbound to the staging airport while the air show is active
As a lifelong Chicago-area resident, I’ve had the pleasure of attending the Chicago Air & Water Show several times.
Tuesday, April 6, 2010
Thar She Blows!
Spotting whales in the Saint Lawrence
Nonpilots often ask me why I spend a good portion of my hard-earned income on flying.