Iguanas, Tortoises & Bad Gas

Iguanas, Tortoises & Bad Gas

Several years ago, we decided to fly our Cessna 340 from its home base in Washington State (KBVS) down through Mexico and Central America to Ecuador, and then 600 nm across the Pacific to the Galapagos. Well-maintained airplane; two high-time ATP pilots; veteran passenger wives; two airplanes in loose company (a Baron and Cirrus) and Read More

It’s All About the Ice

It’s All About the Ice

For some reason, you long ago quit making saliva. Your mouth is so dry it is hard to swallow. Your hands are cold, but at the same time strangely wet with sweat, as are your ears under the Bose headsets. And finally, if all these symptoms of stress were not enough, you just realized a Read More

Jet Journal: Higher Minimums

Jet Journal: Higher Minimums

Professional flying is nearly always an extremely relaxed, highly controlled and almost boring affair. When you depart, under what conditions, where you are going, and by what routing is often entirely under the control of a complex set of rules and a team of experts, of which you are only one. You certainly feel professionally Read More

Once a Doctor, Always a Doctor

Once a Doctor, Always a Doctor

  Due to the somewhat insecure nature of the business, many pilots who fly airplanes for a living also have a backup career. When those secondary skills are called for while aloft, it can make for some novel deviations from regular pilot duties. In my case, being a doctor with an emergency medicine background has Read More

Cracked Cylinders

Cracked Cylinders

  What previously was a smooth, aerodynamic engine cowl is now laying on the hangar’s concrete floor with various parts never intended for public viewing being exposed in all their tangled awkwardness for any passerby to see. Within this jumble of tubes, wires and other objects mounted on various odd-shaped brackets, there is a small Read More