Starting the practical IMC course

My practical course is scheduled to run over the Easter and Bank holiday week. It will be quite intensive,  with two instructors at different times. Hopefully the weather and aircraft technical issues won’t cause any issues.  I intended to try and complete the course over the extended week, hoping that immersion in the subject and continuity should help keep me focussed. I’d booked up a fair number of slots for

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My first Farm Strip

The opportunity One of the more experienced club members used to have share in a plane at a small farm strip near Aylesbury. He’d not been back there for several years, but still kept in touch and was planning a landaway to visit there again. I’d already had a landaway with him to White Waltham, and was more than happy when he asked me along. He would fly there and

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IMC Rating Theory

The UK PPL IMC Rating is quite an old qualification, having been introduced sometime around the late 1960’s. Little seems to have changed. It relies on older navigation instruments rather than GPS, but perhaps this is a good thing because GPS can fail. I’ve had this happen a long time ago on a sailing trip across the English Channel, falling back on dead-reckoning and the Mark 1 eyeball to pick

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Solo night flight from Lyneham

After my successful familiarisation night flight the previous week, I thought the next step to consolidate this would be to take a short solo local flight one evening after work. With sunset around 8pm local, official night starts at 8:30. I could get to the airfield by 7:30, so planned to fly from 8 till 9. This would be similar to a late return from a landaway, and mean I

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Night flying familiarisation from Lyneham

  I had completed my Night Qualification in January at Gloucester, but not used it since then. It is possible to fly from Lyneham after sunset, but first you need to be checked out by an instructor. Familiarisation with the local procedures and visual references is extremely useful for any night destination, and it also helped remind me of the differences. It’s also required to have approval for each trip

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Dunkeswell Solo

Where to go for a Sunday afternoon? Unable to take off until 3pm on Sunday (due to family commitments), but with no hard stop on my return (apart from sunset at 8), I thought Dunkeswell would be a good choice. Although the airfield website quoted 5pm closing time, I rang to see what time I could arrive and depart. They are open for arrivals until 5pm, but you can leave

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Lydd

Wanting to “stretch our legs”, Andy and I arranged to share a flight from Lyneham to Lydd. I flew there and he flew back, with both legs averaging about 2 hours. The longer flight time on the outbound leg was due to three reasons: Slight less direct routing – I planned our track to leave the Lyneham zone as quickly as possible, going East along the motorway before turning south

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Signing up for IMC Training

The IMC rating (Instrument Meteorological Conditions) is a UK only qualification available to private pilots. It’s much easier to get than the full IR (Instrument Rating), but confers the privileges of flying in cloud and instrument landings. Whether this should be used only as in exceptional situations purely for safety purposes or as a more regular part of general flying routine is highly debatable and a hot topic in the flying discussion

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White Waltham

I’ve enjoyed several flights from RAF Lyneham now. My first few were with other club members, and included a long Navex down to the south coast passing within sight of Popham, Goodwood (near Portsmouth), Bembridge and Sandown on the Isle of Wight. I also made a solo landaway to Shobdon, where I’d been during my PPL training including my Qualifying Cross Country. I’m still a very new PPL (“freshly minted”

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Gentle introduction to Lyneham flying club

I’ve enjoyed several flights from RAF Lyneham now. My first few were with other club members, and included a long Navex down to the south coast passing within sight of Popham, Goodwood (near Portsmouth), Bembridge and Sandown on the Isle of Wight. This gave Andy and myself some ideas for future landaway destinations which we hoped to reach later in the year ahead. I also made a solo landaway to

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