Thursday, February 26, 2009

Getting close

Two more flights in----we've managed to fly three of four days this week so far. We've been really hitting it hard hitting the local approaches, because I want to have seen each one at least 2-3 times before the checkride. We're really in that fine-tuning phase today.

Each flight lately has been pretty close to a "pass." Today only had a couple of not-so-brilliant moments, the most egregious of which being the one where I flew through the final aproach course before turning outbound on the ILS 19 backcourse. You know I won't forget to do that again...

Other than that, the approaches were beautiful. We also finally got to practice an ASR (Airport Surveillance Radar) approach. These are usually used when you have a navigational instrument fail, and entail the approach controller prompting you "turn left. stop turn. on course. descend now to 2000." This happens all the way down to a Minimum Descent Altitude, which happens to be 880 at Waco. It's the ultimate test of your faith in the controllers (especially when you're doing it while also simulating a vacuum pump failure, which we were today).

I've taken about 8 practice IFR written exams so far, and my scores are running in the high 80's. It's fair to say that I am MUCH more prepared for the IFR written than my Private written. I'm not really worried about it. Then, there's the checkride. Two and a half months and change until I need to be instructing, and we're still on pace. Unbelievably, I might add. I still can't believe how fast we're moving. But it sure is fun!

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