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Sport-Pilot Training

Our pilot training articles are designed to help you improve your flying proficiency. Bone up on beneficial skills as well as the biggest mistakes to avoid as a pilot. Fly right with articles on topics such as dealing with ice and the most dangerous things you can do as a pilot.

Tuesday, January 25, 2011

The Many Roads To Aviation

Real pilot stories show how passion and dedication equal flight-training success

The Many Roads To AviationMelanie Endsley never set out to become a jet pilot. “The plan was just for me to take some safety pilot lessons since I would be flying with a pilot friend in his jet,” explains Endsley.
Tuesday, December 7, 2010

Beware The Downburst

An insidious risk that can undercut airspeed and drive you into the ground

Beware The DownburstContrary to the advice that aviation usually allows you to make most mistakes only once, I’ve been fortunate in 50 years of flying to make virtually all the bad mistakes, in some cases more than once.
Tuesday, November 2, 2010

Challenging Runways

How to handle tough landings

Challenging RunwaysWhat makes some runways more challenging than others? The length? The wind? What you had for breakfast that morning? What?
Tuesday, October 19, 2010

The Box Is Yours

Competition aerobatics can make you a more precise and confident pilot

The Box Is YoursI was circling at 4,500 feet in the designated contest holding area for the Borrego Springs Akrofest while another competitor finished his routine in the aerobatic box.
Tuesday, October 5, 2010

Managing Risk: VFR Versus VMC

Are you prepared for when the weather deteriorates?

Managing Risk: VFR Versus VMCIt has been a long day on a long cross-country flight. The weather forecasts have not been very accurate—you’re reminded of a quote from an anonymous wag: "Weather forecasts are horoscopes with numbers."
Tuesday, September 7, 2010

Demystifying ATC

How to work better with “the voice” in your headset

Demystifying ATCIt seems we all have a story, some event in our lives that brought us into the aviation trade.
Tuesday, September 7, 2010

Pilot Careers 2010: A Brave New World

With the industry showing signs of life, preparation and training soon will meet opportunity for prospective pilots

Pilot Careers 2010: A Brave New WorldIt probably seems extraordinary to be discussing pilot careers at a time when the worst economic turmoil in 60 years has dragged the airline industry to near-collapse and an insatiable media has spotlighted every ugly aspect of the profession.
Tuesday, August 24, 2010

Lessons Learned Part 2

The Lower 48

Lessons Learned Part 2After earning my private pilot’s license in Alaska in 1980, I wasn’t sure what was next. I loved to fly.
Tuesday, July 20, 2010

Lessons Learned Part 1

Alaska vs. The Outside

Lessons Learned Part 1My first flight lessons might have been different than yours, but as with all pilots, those early experiences are still tattooed in my mind.
Tuesday, July 6, 2010

Is Glass Safer?

Making sense of the NTSB glass-cockpit report

Is Glass Safer?Earlier this year, the NTSB released the findings of a special study that they conducted comparing glass-cockpit aircraft and similar conventional, or “round dial,”-equipped aircraft.
Tuesday, June 8, 2010

Water, Wind & Floats

At Jack Brown’s Seaplane Base, getting wet is part of the fun

Water, Wind & FloatsBe prepared to have fun,” Frances Brown told me. That was one of those phrases I had heard before with little payoff.
Tuesday, June 8, 2010

Dealing With Convective Weather

Some pilots simply lock their airplanes in the hangar when convective weather is about. Others learn to cope.

Dealing With Convective WeatherShortly after returning from a recent Grand Caravan delivery from Long Beach, Calif., to Seoul, Korea, I spoke at a LoPresti First Saturday event in Sebastian, Fla.
Tuesday, May 25, 2010

The Myth (Almost) Of Tailwinds

Logic suggests you should have tailwinds roughly 50% of the time. Logic is wrong.

The Myth (Almost) Of TailwindsIt was late March 1994, and I was waiting for wind—again. Mooney Aircraft had loaned me a new TLS in January so I could set several world records flying between Los Angeles and Jacksonville, Fla.
Tuesday, May 25, 2010

Stretching Your Wings

Advanced training is the ticket to taking your flying to the next level

Stretching Your WingsOne of the most popular phrases in general aviation is “license to learn.”
Tuesday, April 6, 2010

Dream Makers: Everyday Pilots Reaching For The Sky

When passion and determination combine, anything is possible

Dream Makers: Everyday Pilots Reaching For The SkyDreams of flight are special. They beckon you from your earliest memories, and they’re insistent—always calling you to look up at the sky when an airplane passes overhead, or crane your neck at the nearest airport.
Tuesday, March 23, 2010

Nonflying Aerospace Careers

10 dynamic career fields worth considering

Nonflying Aerospace CareersIn past years, we’ve called this section “Nonflying Aviation Careers,” recognizing that not everyone interested in aviation wants to be a pilot.
Tuesday, March 9, 2010

Uphill/Downhill Landings

Making sense of tricky landings

Uphill/Downhill LandingsWhat are the best conditions for landing uphill/downwind or downhill/upwind? It may seem dangerous to land into the wind but downslope on a snowy runway; yet landing upslope with a tailwind seems equally precarious.
Tuesday, February 9, 2010

From Tailwheel To Turbine

Total transition training, the Gauntlet way

From Tailwheel To TurbineBill Stewart, until recently a lapsed pilot, sounds like something between a fighter jock and a kid in a candy store as he recounts his latest aerial exploits on the ramp at Chicago’s Aurora Municipal Airport (ARR).