27 Nov 2001 richieb   » (Journeyer)

Well, back to work after a 4 day weekend. The weather in the north-east has been rather warm for the end of November.

Last Friday was a nice day and I took my airplane on a short cross-country flight. That's flight that's at least 50 nautical miles away from the home airport. I visited Kutztown, Pennsylvania for no other reason that I have never been there before. Also the direct route to Kutztown was away from any controlled airspace, so I didn't have to worry about navigating around all those restricted zones I cannot fly into since September 11th.

I haven't done a cross-country flight to a new place in a while, as I tend to go to the same places all the time, and I forgot how much fun it is to navigate with the sectional chart and the compass. Of course, I also used the Loran and VORs to keep track of my position, but they weren't really necessary.

Navigation during flight shows you that math works. It's simple trig and basic rate problems, but it gets you from one point on the globe to another. Amazing!

When flying into Pennsylvania I get to see some mountains - not big, but real mountains. It can be little scary, for a flat-lander pilot like me, to cross even small ranges of mountains. I can't imagine what it would be like to fly in real big mountains.

Saturday morning was foggy and then it got bit windy so I didn't fly.

Early Sunday, the weather was nicer, with little wind, so I flew a bit in out J-3 Cub. Since stronger winds were forecasted for later that morning I decided to just stay and practice takeoffs and landings. One can never do enough practice in the Cub. Out of the five landings I did (takes about 10 minutes to go around the pattern) one was pretty good, the others just fair. Not much bouncing.

The Cub is very light, so if there is any significant wind (i.e. wind stronger than 10 knots) I would avoid flying it - unless I had lots of recent cross-wind practice.

Other than that I haven't done much this past weekend - except I gave in and started reading the first book in the "Harry Potter" series. I already saw the movie.

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