Position Report

Knowing When to Say No

A spring bomb cyclone hits the Midwest. Historic flooding swamps the Midwest and Southeast. Heat waves smother Florida and the Southwest. A stuck pattern in the jet stream creates a trough over the western United States, which allowed systems to push further south than typical for late May into June.  If you were anywhere near the Read More

Normalizing Upset Recovery Training

Not that many years ago, most general aviation pilots were taught to fly using tailwheel airplanes before tricycle-gear aircraft, with their inherently more stable characteristics. My mother learned to fly nearly 60 years ago in an Aeronca Champ with no electrical system, something that was very common at airfields across the country. Flying that little Read More

Tornado Alley

Tornado Alley

Understanding how convective weather works can help you plan your flight with a higher likelihood of success, as well as safety. You may decide the airplane is better off left in the hangar, unless, of course, the tornado finds your hangar instead.  A low-pressure “bomb cyclone” was straddling the Midwest. A dry line extended through Read More

Avoiding the Strike

Avoiding the Strike

“It came out of nowhere.” If you have every experienced a bird strike or know someone who has, these words might sound familiar. I admit that I uttered them myself recently when a crow-sized bird smacked against my windscreen shortly after I rotated on takeoff. Thankfully, the size of the bird resulted in my plane Read More

How Sharp is Your  Airmanship Sword?

How Sharp is Your Airmanship Sword?

What piloting skill is the most perishable? When I’ve had a lapse in flying as I did recently following my hip surgery, I tend to focus on my instrument procedure skills. More specifically, I prioritize my ability to execute an instrument approach with zero errors and within commercial standards as a key benchmark of my Read More