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Pilot Skills

Article: From Spitfires To Mosquitoes

During World War II, I was a ferry pilot, flying military aircraft for the Air Transport Auxiliary (ATA).

Article: Perfect Your Approaches

One of the most basic tenets of journalism is that we're all either the beneficiaries or the victims of our sources.

Article: Immerse Yourself!

No rating in aviation carries more mystique and prestige than the instrument rating. Sure, the ATP is a pinnacle of sorts, but for most pilots, the instrument rating is the big jump that separates professional pilots from their more casual brethren....

Article: Close Calls On The Runways

Prominent on its list of Most Wanted Safety Improvements for 2011 is an assessment by the NTSB that the FAA needs to speed up improvements to procedures and equipment in order to help eliminate runway incursions.

Article: Canada By Cub

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. ...

Article: Balancing Skill, Entertainment And Safety

I’m an air show pilot who’s known for making my performances look dangerous.

Article: There And Back

I had long aspired to circumnavigate Australia, but time and opportunity had proved evasive until recently.

Article: Midair Over The Hudson

As a result of its investigation of the August 8, 2009, midair collision over the Hudson River, the NTSB says it’s time for the FAA to improve the information it offers to pilots about avoiding collisions.

Article: Training With A Passion

Aerobatic champion, air show superstar, Red Bull racer—Michael Goulian is all of these. But in his day job, if you will, he’s president of Executive Flyers Aviation, a second-generation flight school founded by his father, Myron, in 1964.

Article: Aerial Phobias

All of us have things in our lives that make us uncomfortable, sometimes to the point of terrorizing us. As kids, it’s what’s hiding under the bed. ...

Article: I Did It!

On a cool, crisp and calm October morning, I finally took my first solo flight. It was amazing! My journey to this point started almost three years before, in early 2007. ...

Article: Puerto Rico To Provo

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.

Article: Stop Squeezing Them In

Remember the circus act in which a dozen clowns get out of the smallest car you’ve ever seen drive into the center ring?

Article: Still Relentless

I can tell you that for one lap prior, the plane never ran so well.

Article: Where General Aviation Shines

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. ...

Article: The Crosswind Component

Ensuring that there’s a safety margin in everything we do is fundamental to aviation accident avoidance.

Article: Pilot In Command

Being a professional aerobatic and race pilot for the past several years has given me the opportunity to meet many civilian, military, helicopter, fixed-wing, professional and recreational pilots.

Article: Advanced-Degree Autopilot

We familiarly call them “George” or “Otto.” But Avidyne’s DFC90 autopilot makes a strong case for being called “Doctor” George or “Professor” Otto.

Article: Open-Cockpit Chills

It was discovered last September that my open-cockpit biplane, a Starduster Too, needed an engine overhaul.

Article: Hazards Of Extreme Flying

Ensuring that there’s a safety margin in everything we do is fundamental to aviation accident avoidance.

Article: Managing Risk: VFR Versus VMC

It 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."

Article: The Heavy Glider

I’m one fortunate aviator. My professional career has coincided with the 30-year flight history of the Space Shuttle program.

Article: We Fly The Space Shuttle (Simulator, That Is)

I always seem to be in the wrong time warp. I was born too late to fly fighters in WWII and too late for the space program.

Article: Taking Command Of Your First Plane

It started at Disneyland, holding my daughter Elena’s hand, when my cell phone rang.

Article: Buyer Beware

You might think that FAA airworthiness, inspection and record-keeping requirements virtually guarantee that any airplane you buy is going to be in superb condition. ...

Article: Pilot Careers 2010: A Brave New World

It 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.

Article: Demystifying ATC

It seems we all have a story, some event in our lives that brought us into the aviation trade.

Article: Rookies of Reno

The Reno Air Races are unlike any other contest in the world.

Article: The Power Of Electric Flight

What’s the next big leap in aviation? I think about this stuff all the time.

Article: Lessons Learned Part 2

After earning my private pilot’s license in Alaska in 1980, I wasn’t sure what was next. I loved to fly.