Monday, November 26, 2007
Film at Eleven
Making my way back to the Bay Area by car after a long anticipated Thanksgiving break, I've had a chance to contemplate the last few weeks. Several people commented that I hadn't been blogging lately and asked why. There was really only one reason; I was busier that a one-legged man in a butt-kicking contest. In one 4.5 day period I gave 30 hours of flight instruction in four different aircraft types. For every hour of dual given, there's at least an hour or so of ground instruction. So there were some interesting things to report, just not enough time to write them down.
One flight with an instrument student provided excellent conditions for flying ILS approaches. The 1.8 hour cross-country flight involved only 0.2 hours in visual meteorological conditions and an ILS to minima where the approach lights were barely visible through a low layer of scud. A pilot who has seen this sort of approach doesn't have to hear a long explanation of how important approach lighting is at the end of an ILS.
Another instrument flight involved ATC giving us a 40 minute delay due to flow control being instituted at Oakland (yes, ATC does indeed issue spur of the moment holding patterns). Puttering back and forth in the holding pattern, a discussion ensued about fuel reserves. If we held for the length of time ATC had specified, then flew to Oakland, it was quite possible we would not have the required IFR fuel reserves for our destination. Teaching scenarios are one thing, but seeing the fuel totalizer tick off gallons remaining while you fly a holding pattern is much more memorable. Especially with 100 low-lead aviation fuel now approaching US$6 a gallon at some Bay Area locations.
I've also discovered some new-to-me, cool features in the G1000 and will post some screen captures just as soon as I get home.
In the mean time, here's a photographic puzzler. What is shown in the photo above, where is it on display, and what makes this particular display unique?