Saturday, 31 May 2014

RIP Manston

This morning I awoke to glorious sunshine so I called the flying club to see if there was a C152 available for hire and as luck would have it there was! I cancelled my slot for tomorrow which hadn't been looking too good weather wise and did a route I was going to do last week. This was the one scuppered by low cloud.

So new plane for me G-FLIP a C152 aerobat which was fairly new to the school. She was in good order. Transponder was mode Alpha only though as it was reporting altitude incorrectly. There was no COM 2 as well but I had no complaints otherwise - she flew nicely enough.

From Rochester I climbed out from Runway 02 turned East and headed down to Canterbury. From there over to the Dover VOR and then north up to Manston (RIP) now sadly closed down. As an aside, I signed the petition to have Thanet District Council perform a mandatory purchase of it this week - I hope it goes somewhere and people don't give up the fight to save this precious piece of our history.

From Manston it was a straight westerly track back to Rochester. Coming back I did an intentional go around on R02 as somebody else in the circuit doing touch and gos was so far out [actually way outside the ATZ] that I ended up in front of them. Perhaps he was giving way to me and I wanted to give way to him but rather than orbit in the circuit I just gave my intention to do a go-around and let them have the slot. After that circuit to myself and an uneventful smooth full flap landing over the trees. I was expecting some bumps on final but strangely nothing. Perhaps it was so early and the thermals were still in bed. A really lovely day today. 

One other thing, I was heading up to Manston and another pilot who was talking with Southend Radar asked to change frequency to Manston! The Southend ATC controller was like "You haven't heard then...its closed". The pilot was "Oh I think I read something like that a few weeks ago." I couldn't help but think did you not plan your route mate? Its on a dam Notam anyway. I mean come on... really?

Brakes Off: 0900Z: Brakes On: 10:20Z

Sunday, 25 May 2014

IFR Track from May 3, 2014

In catching up with my diary here I just found I had recorded my track from the revision day before my test. This was my jolly around Essex on May 3rd, 2014.

IMC Skills Test Practice on May 3, 2014

May 18, 2014 DME Arc Lydd

I spent Sunday morning on May 18 2014, going over to Southend and then heading off down to Lydd in G-BOTF to practice the DME Arc. All went very well and on the way back I was given a vectored ILS approach to Runway 24. A nice mornings flying. Weather was beautiful!

May 18 2014 Early Morning at Southend 

May 18 2014 Early Morning at Southend

May 18 2014 Early Morning at Southend

IMC Skills Test Passed May 4th 2014

I've been neglecting my diary lately as I've been so busy. We've been away on holiday a couple of times (Barcelona and then the New Forest) and work has been on my mind quite a bit so I've not found time to write much.

Suffice to say I did my IMC skills test on May 4th and passed. I had put it off for some time much to the amusement of my instructor. Well, its a test isn't it - who actually enjoys them. 

Since then I did a DME Arc at Lydd and then yesterday (May 24, 2014) I went back to Rochester for a 28 Day Check which involved a few circuits in prep for hiring a C152 today. Sadly the cloud base was iffy at 8:30 this morning so I sat it out and rebooked for next Sunday.

May 18 2014 DME Arc Lydd
C152 Rear View Window : May 24, 2014
Aircraft Checks : May 24, 2014
Aircraft Checks : May 24, 2014
I have to say last night it felt good to fly the C152 again. I was on R16 at Rochester and it was a lovely sunny evening after a day of rain showers. It was only 30 minutes which covered two touch and goes and a glide approach which turned out really well. I think I've hit the 100 hour mark on my log book but will have to add that up and post it here in my diary.