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.
There’s no difference between flying in daylight and flying at night—except you can’t see anything.
There’s no difference between flying in daylight and flying at night—except you can’t see anything. So goes the sage advice from my old flight instructor, and he’s essentially right. The airplane doesn’t know or care that its pilot is visually impaired during the hours of darkness. It performs and responds just as it does in more »
The first step in learning to fly helicopters, a lifelong dream of one pilot, was learning to hover. But would that first step also be his last?
I was bewildered during preflight and startup—vaguely familiar but with way more steps that I didn’t fully understand—couldn’t yet correlate. I was sure that once we got going—got airborne—I’d be at home. After all, I’d been flying airplanes for many years. This was my introductory flight lesson for the rotor wing add-on rating to my more »
It’s not supposed to happen, but it does. What to do when the controller forgets about you.
Fly IFR, and you’ll run into this situation soon enough: You’re on a base-leg vector to the localizer or inbound course. This means you’re perpendicular to the final approach course—the course that takes you to the runway—and the next heading you receive from ATC should result in a 20- to 30-degree intercept to that final more »
Developing good habits is critical for our flying. So why is it that so few of us are any good at it?
It’s often said that habits get started early in life and stick with us. Unfortunately, that’s true for habits both good and bad. So it’s important to develop good habits early and nurture them while learning how to keep from picking up bad habits along the way. If you’re a pilot, you understand how fundamental more »
Crosswinds can be tricky, so take some time to arm yourself with the knowledge you need.
Subscribe today to Plane & Pilot magazine for industry news, reviews and much more delivered straight to you! Land being the valuable commodity that it is, it’s becoming more and more difficult to find an airport offering a choice of runway directions—other than the two alternate ends of a single strip of pavement. And so, more more »
Flying in the high country provides its own set of challenges to pilots. Here are a few basics to know.
Subscribe today to Plane & Pilot magazine for industry news, reviews and much more delivered straight to you! My home is located on a public use airport in a Colorado mountain valley at an elevation of 8,300 feet. When I step out my front door, I can count seven peaks within seven miles that top 14,000 more »
The need for airline pilots is reshaping how new pilots are learning to fly
Are you an aviation enthusiast or pilot? Sign up for our newsletter, full of tips, reviews and more! Not too long ago, there wasn’t much hiring going on at the airlines. Many pilots interested in airline jobs took flight instructing positions and kept them for a while, building hours well beyond the 1,500 hours total time more »
Take maximum advantage of this low-risk chance to sharpen your skills.
Are you an aviation enthusiast or pilot? Sign up for our newsletter, full of tips, reviews and much more! Flight reviews come to all of us every couple of years, if not supplanted by an equally rigorous evaluation and training requirement. Under Federal Aviation Regulation 61.56(c), no person may act as pilot in command unless a more »
Five things the tower tells you to do that don't seem to make much sense, and why they say them.
Are you an aviation enthusiast or pilot? Sign up for our newsletter, full of tips, reviews and more! It’s a given that air traffic controllers like to talk. I mean, why else would we have chosen this career? I like to talk, and to my credit, most pilots hear what I say. But the question is, more »
Know what loss of control looks like and how to stop it before it ruins your day.
Are you an aviation enthusiast or pilot? Sign up for our newsletter, full of tips, reviews and more! Even though they might be technically correct, when an NTSB report cites loss of control as the cause of a crash, it’s really not much help. It’s only slightly more informative than saying that colliding with terrain was more »
"Pilot's discretion" gives us some really useful options if we know how to use it.
Are you an aviation enthusiast or pilot? Sign up for our newsletter, full of tips, reviews and much more! “Descend and maintain” is such a staple of IFR communications, it might as well be a single word. Yet there are times when that’s the last thing you want to do. Maybe those clouds are bumpy, and more »
Sometimes the things in life that give us joy take work. Bring it on.
Subscribe today to Plane & Pilot magazine for industry news, reviews and much more! Like most pilots, my first few lessons in pursuit of a Private Pilot Certificate were memorable. I wish I could report that this was because of the exhilaration of sailing into the wild blue yonder or cavorting among the clouds. With apologies more »
Instrument pilots have a thing for regulatory minutia. An information morsel you’ll often hear repeated is “being able to descend to 100 feet AGL when you can see only the approach lights.” That’s too bad, because it belittles a beautiful piece of information design by turning it into a gouge for aviation trivia night. It’s more »
From airfactsjournal.com. Disruption is a hot topic these days, but the 16th century had plenty of it, too. In the span of a generation, the printing press (and the Protestant Reformation) fundamentally changed the way many Christians practiced their religion. Instead of listening to a priest interpret the Bible, the average churchgoer could read it more »
Exploring the intersection of risk, age and experience
It was one of those days, a long one, replete with delays and crabby passengers and thunderstorms. After 12 hours on duty, five legs, and three different airplanes, my crew welcomed the approach of the jetway at the Huntsville International Airport like a marathon runner rejoices at the sight of the banner. On such days, more »