The original jumbo jet celebrated the 50th anniversary of its first flight earlier this week.
It’s been a wild and unpredictable half century for arguably the most innovative airliner ever, the Boeing 747. Dreamt up back in the mid 1960s, the double-decker jet burst onto the scene in a way that probably only one other airliner ever has, and that one was supersonic. With the ability to carry more passengers more »
To set it down in the river among the crocodiles, in the trees or, wait, there’s a third choice?
You might call the approach to the runway at Funchal, Madeira Islands, Portugal, challenging, especially if you’re flying on an even modestly windy day. In my case, I went into Funchal in a typical wind event, flying a new Cessna T303 Crusader, a medium twin intended to compete head-to-head with Piper’s wildly successful Seneca. It more »
The answer key for the crossword puzzle found in the March 2019 issue of Plane & Pilot.
Across 1 Mooney ____ Ultra 5 Mnemonics based pre-landing checklist 8 High winds 9 Mnemonics based word for when you do your pre-take off checklist 10 What stealthy aircraft want to avoid being 12 The object of our obsession 14 Steep nose descent 17 Faintly lit more »
How a seemingly uneventful Unicom call changed everything.
I recently heard a friend say that she wasn’t ready to get another dog because she was still very sad about the loss of her previous dog about a year earlier. A few months back, a different friend told me that he was reluctant to try online dating because he didn’t want to get hurt. more »
The mystery in this case has nothing do with science fiction.
When you say an airplane has disappeared in the Bermuda Triangle, people sit up and take notice. And if that airplane has recognizable names on board, they sit up even taller. An accident occurred in the Bermuda Triangle on May 15, 2017, and the NTSB released its report on October 1 of this year. It more »
Learn all about the history and evolution of gliders.
What a glider is: Non-powered aircraft that is not lighter than air Derivation of the term “glider:” Unknown Other common term for gliding: Soaring Difference: In soaring, pilots gain altitude in flight Glide ratio: Cessna 172: 9:1 Best high-performance sailplane: Better than 70:1 Northern flying squirrel: 2:1 Steinway Piano: Infinitely poor zero:1 Methods for altitude more »
Forty years in between memorable experiences in very different airplanes keeps love of flying alive for pilot.
As for so many pilots, it all started for me in a C-150. My very first flight in the small Cessna trainer was one I’ve never forgotten. In an extreme climb, my pilot friend took me high up, ending the climb with a stall. “That is what happens when you force an aircraft to stop more »
The new rules will bring some profound changes to the process for instructors, practical test takers and examiners, too.
The FAA issued a Notice in October that allows more flexibility in how Designated Pilot Examiners (DPEs) conduct practical tests These changes are poised to help alleviate some backlogs in the scheduling and conducting of practical tests in the United States for pilots and students. Specifically, the major points of change included allowing DPEs to more »
Knowing when to give it another try is a key to avoiding a big safety risk.
In the sticky southern Georgia afternoon, the air was flat and heavy as we turned final for Runway 6 at KCSG. It was our last fuel stop after a long day, and we were ready to call it quits for the evening. Following my flight lead, an A36 Bonanza, down the imaginary glideslope, I flew more »
Forty years ago, a Twin Otter went down en route to Denver from Steamboat Springs, Colorado. The story of what happened next is as riveting as the analysis of why it happened.
This month marks the 40th anniversary of the December 4, 1978, crash of Rocky Mountain Airways Flight 217 in snow-covered terrain at 10,530 feet MSL near a place called Buffalo Pass, about 8 nautical miles east-northeast of Steamboat Springs, Colorado. The de Havilland DHC-6-300 Twin Otter had 22 on board: the captain, first officer and more »
An unwelcome surprise provides a powerful and unexpected lesson to a young pilot.
At my airport, it’s rarely ever quiet; that’s a price we have to pay while flying at one of the busiest general aviation airports in the country. It’s not often that I get to fly in the morning with my busy schedule, but I woke up extra early to do a quick engine break-in flight more »
Three days of flying close formation over some of America's most dramatic terrain.
Lift off from Runway 25 at Four Corners Regional Airport in Farmington, New Mexico, turn slightly west to point the spinner at Shiprock, and you’re on track for some of the most remarkable views in America. If you’re a fan of old John Wayne westerns, you will already have seen the dramatic rock formations of more »
The idea behind circular runways isn’t new, but it has gotten increased attention lately. Could it be the key to increasing landing capacity nationwide, or is it just as crazy an idea as it seems?
Round airports have been around since the early days of aviation, because that layout allowed the notoriously lightly wing-loaded planes of the day to land directly into the wind no matter which direction it was blowing. But circular runways are another thing altogether. And while the idea might seem totally crazy at first blush, there’s more »
At the Barnstormer’s Grill in Williamson, Georgia, I sat in a booth next to myself at age 20. Okay, so he was redheaded and thin, but the parts that really mattered were all but identical. Similar socioeconomic upbringing, same struggle to continue higher education, same desire to fly airplanes for a living. And friends, this more »
Not everyone in the world gets to be a pilot. In fact, a fraction of 1 percent of people in the United States ever get their wings, and worldwide it’s a fraction of a hundredth of a percent. Being a pilot sometimes seems common to us, because so many of our friends are pilots, and more »