Wind and Gusts

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IFR Fix: 'My first ever runway incursion'

IFR Fix | Nov 10, 2014

You have your clearance, have made the “go” decision, and are taxiing toward the active runway. Gusty winds and rain are making this a more demanding task than usual; if anything unexpected comes up such as a last-minute routing change or an anomalous indication on the panel, will you be able to sort everything out without error?

Pilot Getaways: Gem of the South Atlantic Coast

Article | Oct 22, 2014

If you wanted to visit Jekyll Island in the early 1900s, you would have been out of luck unless your name appeared on a social registry with the likes of the Rockefellers, Vanderbilts, and Pulitzers. Now, all are welcome. Consider stopping by while you are in the area for AOPA's St. Simon Fly-In Nov. 8.

Vegas wind curtails race

Article | Oct 14, 2014

Canadian Pete McLeod earned a place atop the Red Bull Air Race podium after howling winds cut the racing short Oct. 12 in Las Vegas.

Comments support heater AD inspection provisions

Advocacy | Oct 08, 2014

AOPA has submitted formal comments to the FAA on a proposed airworthiness directive to update the inspection requirements for Meggitt (Troy) Inc. combustion heaters.

Put ground school in your hands with these five apps

Apps of the week | Oct 07, 2014

Student pilots can use these five apps to help study for their FAA knowledge exams.

Gift guide: Gifts for the digital pilot

Pilot Magazine | Oct 03, 2014

Pilots are on the forefront when it comes to adapting to the possibilities of the digital age. Like no other group, they’ve shaped smartphones and tablets to serve their specific needs in aviation.

Test Pilot

Pilot Magazine | Sep 05, 2014

Who wrote, “If you would measure the heartbeat of a city, take the pulse of its airport?”

Fire risk prompts AD

Advocacy | Aug 25, 2014

Citing one known fatal accident, the FAA has proposed stricter inspection requirements for Meggitt (Troy) combustion heaters.

Aviate, navigate, communicate—and calculate

Apps of the week | Aug 18, 2014

With all of the calculations pilots are required to do for every flight, here's a look at five apps that can help with that process.

Weather Watch: Gusts and squalls

Pilot Magazine | Jul 31, 2014

A gust front at EAA’s AirVenture in 2011, about to attack AOPA’s tent site.

Training Tip: The lingering low

Article | Jun 17, 2014

Strong winds don’t always imply turbulence. However, an informed pilot glancing at the sky on this post-frontal morning will expect it to be present.

Apps handle different aviation tasks

Apps of the week | Jun 16, 2014

Five apps range from a timer for pilots to a wind component calculator.

Training Tip: Thunderstorm in sight

Article | Jun 10, 2014

Does this scenario justify deviating from the airport’s normal calm-wind-runway operations?

TBM Odyssey

Pilot Magazine | Jun 09, 2014

In March, Daher-Socata—manufacturer of the TBM—invited AOPA Pilot along for a one-of-a-kind, epic ferry flight. It involved bringing a flight of four brand-new TBM 900s to the United States, the largest number of TBMs ever imported at one time.

Test Pilot

Pilot Magazine | Jun 06, 2014

What U.S. airline began operations by flying the mail between Key West, Florida, and Havana, Cuba, in 1927?

Training Tip: Volatile virga

Article | Jun 03, 2014

Virga can be picturesque to behold, but don’t let its benign appearance breed complacency.

FAA partners with GA groups to ask, ‘Got weather?’

Article | May 01, 2014

A new safety campaign announced May 1, “Got Weather?,” aims to help general aviation pilots prepare for weather challenges they may encounter during 2014.

Aircraft, hangars damaged in Michigan wind storm

Article | Apr 14, 2014

Thousands of Michigan residents remained without power late April 14 after strong winds toppled trees and power lines, peeled back roofs, and destroyed three general aviation aircraft the evening of April 12.

Test Pilot

Pilot Magazine | Apr 04, 2014

What World War II training aircraft made its maiden flight on the same date—May 15, 1939—that AOPA was founded?

Training Tip: Turning down a tailwind

Article | Mar 17, 2014

What the student is observing is visual evidence that there will be a strong tailwind condition on final—something to avoid.

Weather Watch: Convective coverages

Pilot Magazine | Mar 10, 2014

Whether you believe in global warming or not, here’s a hard fact: the days are getting warmer as we make our way toward summer.

Nebraska seeks wind-test tower safety upgrade

Advocacy | Feb 27, 2014

AOPA is working to support a bill under consideration in Nebraska’s legislature to strengthen requirements for the anti-collision marking of temporary meteorological evaluation towers.

Testing slow flight limits

Article | Feb 21, 2014

A research effort under way in Europe aims to make airlines slower, at least on approach and landing.

Weather Watch: Trouble on top

Pilot Magazine | Feb 18, 2014

Flying in on-top conditions is always held up as some sort of Holy Grail.

Weather Watch: Wind wise

Pilot Magazine | Jan 22, 2014

Well, we’re coming out of the depths of winter, and staring March in the face. For pilots—and, well, just about everybody else—thoughts now turn to the strong winds so characteristic of the colder months, and especially the transition from winter to spring. What do we need to know to be wind wise about this time of year?

Proficiency: Hover like a hawk

Pilot Magazine | Dec 23, 2013

Slow flight is an essential skill for pilots to understand and master, but practicing it can be a drag (literally and figuratively).

Whooping cranes take flight...sometimes

Article | Nov 19, 2013

Halloween has long-since passed, but you’d have no clue if you were looking at the Operation Migration crew. Dressed in long, white costumes with hoods that cover their faces, the group aims to trick their charge — a group of eight whooping crane chicks — from recognizing the human form as they teach them the migration route from Wisconsin to Florida behind ultralight airplanes. The cranes were raised in Maryland before being brought to Wisconsin and trained to follow the plane as a surrogate parent. They left the White River Marsh State Wildlife Area and began their migration journey on Oct. 2. As of mid-November, the cranes were in Illinois, having traveled about 200 miles in 41 days. To see their current location, go to the Operation Migration blog, In the Field, or click on either of their two cams: http://www.ustream.tv/migratingcranes or http://www.ustream.tv/flyingcranes.

FAA issues final rule on air carrier pilot training

Advocacy | Nov 06, 2013

The FAA has published a final rule that stresses basic pilot skills and better tracking of remedial training for crewmembers to avoid "events that, although rare, are often catastrophic," such as the February 2009 crash of Colgan Air Flight 3407 near Buffalo, N.Y.

Fly like a fighter: Tackle snarling crosswinds

Fly like a fighter | Nov 04, 2013

Variable gusting winds can force a runway change on short notice. Pilots should be prepared to switch runways even on short final, as retired Air Force fighter pilot Larry Brown recounts from his training at the Air Force Academy.

Dogfight: The E6B computer

Pilot Magazine | Jul 01, 2013

This month, we welcome esteemed aviation writer Barry Schiff into the ring. He and Senior Editor Dave Hirschman debate the merits of one of aviation's finest inventions--the E6B computer.

Wx Watch: A slow-moving IMC-maker

Pilot Magazine | Jul 01, 2013

I was taking an intensive flight training course earlier this year, and it ended up being a real workout. By this I mean instrument weather for much of the nine hours I flew during the weeklong course.

NTSB wants wind-test towers marked, registered

Article | May 30, 2013

As the wind-energy industry grows, the towers it uses to evaluate the potential of sites for power generation pose a growing hazard to aviation, the NTSB said, issuing six safety recommendations to stakeholders.

Safety Pilot: Low-impact aerobatics: The Swiss way

Pilot Magazine | May 01, 2013

Learning about unusual attitudes—not the pilot’s but the aircraft’s—is an excellent skill and need not be painful. It’s good experience since most of us work hard to avoid them.

Apps aid flight planning process

Article | Apr 16, 2013

You can’t fly anywhere without proper flight planning. Smartphone and tablet apps have simplified the process, covering everything from flight calculators to wind computers.

The cold truth

Article | Apr 16, 2013

In rugged, remote country, harsh weather can be more life-threatening than an aircraft crash itself. In 2012, AOPA Online Managing Editor Alyssa Miller reported on what she’d learned in a weekend-long winter survival course held in the woods of northwest Montana.

Breezy day at Sun ’n Fun Splash-In

Article | Apr 11, 2013

The skies were blue, the air hot but not steamy—a perfect day for the Sun 'n Fun Splash-In except for one thing: the wind. Some 35 varieties of seaplanes flew in for the day to participate in the grapefruit bomb drop and spot landing contests, and to enjoy a day on Florida’s Lake Agnes.

Don’t let the mountain siren lure you

Article | Mar 26, 2013

Mountain flying can be a captivating adventure along beautiful valleys, over brilliant mountain lakes, and above sprawling icy-blue and -green glaciers as you climb to cross a mountain saddle or circumnavigate a peak—and once again continue the spectacular journey. But along with their beauty, mountains harbor lurking dangers that can snag a flight in one unforgiving moment.

Flight Amid Vertical Terrain

Article | Mar 25, 2013

AOPA's A Pilot's Guide to Mountain Flying Introduction Do you want to fly above snow-capped mountains, journey through narrow canyons and land at airports that have some of the most spectacular scenery in the world? If you haven't experienced this, you are in for a thrill. However, you will also be faced with greater challenges and different procedures.

Mountain Ways

Article | Mar 25, 2013

AOPA's A Pilot's Guide to Mountain Flying Coping with mountain weather BY THOMAS A. HORNE Why do so many weather-related accidents happen near hilly or mountainous regions? Three reasons come to mind.

Mountain Flying

Article | Mar 25, 2013

AOPA's A Pilot's Guide to Mountain Flying Mountain Flying BY THE AOPA AIR SAFETY FOUNDATION Introduction On behalf of the AOPA Air Safety Foundation staff, thank you for your interest in, quite literally, expanding your horizons by learning the techniques of mountain flying. Operations in the rapidly changing weather conditions and the thin air of the high country differ significantly from normal flight operations.

Weather Curiosity - Fronts

Article | Mar 25, 2013

The Weather Never Sleeps Storming The Front How Air Masses Wage Meteorological War BY JACK WILLIAMS (From Flight Training, May 1996.) Meteorologists use the war-like term fronts for one of the atmosphere's key weather makers, because Norwegian scientists developed the theory of fronts during World War I when headlines screamed about battles along the Western Front. The name seemed appropriate for the zone between contrasting air masses.

Weather Curiosity - Turbulence

Article | Mar 25, 2013

The Weather Never Sleeps Turbulence What Causes Bumps In The Air BY JACK WILLIAMS (From Flight Training, June 1997.) Anyone who's made more than a few flights has almost surely had at least one bumpy ride. To pilots and passengers, the bumps are the result of "turbulence." To an atmospheric scientist, turbulence is "a state of fluid flow in which the instantaneous velocities exhibit irregular and apparently random fluctuations." Those "irregular fluctuations" of the air create the bumps.

: Crosswind Conundrum

Article | Mar 25, 2013

: Crosswind Conundrum Mentoring Tips Crosswind Conundrum Demonstrating a flare for the cross-controlled touchdown It may be a bit sadistic, but one of my favorite spectator sports involves driving to the local airport on a windy day, parking near the runway, and watching inexperienced pilots enter into combat with a blustery crosswind. It is like watching a slapstick comedy.

Thunderstorms

Article | Mar 25, 2013

The Weather Never Sleeps --> Thunderstorms A Thunderstorm Unites Just About Every Hazard Known To Aviation! BY THE FAA (From Flight Training, February 1994.) Annually, and prior to the start of the season, we publish an issue of the Air Traffic Bulletin to focus your attention on the upcoming thunderstorm season and to remind all controllers and specialists of the hazardous weather associated with it. The more we understand the severe atmospheric hazards associated with thunderstorms, the better position we are in to aid the pilot in avoiding these hazards.

ASF - Weather

Article | Mar 25, 2013

Weather and Flight Experience Refer to your Mental Checklist This happened while I was a student pilot. I had long since soloed and done cross-country, but due to finances I had not been able to finish up.

ASF - Weather

Article | Mar 25, 2013

Weather and Flight Experience A Flash of Experience To say I was a newly minted pilot at the time of this story would be putting it mildly. Having just passed my practical on Wednesday, on Friday I flew the 300+ miles to Georgia to help a friend move into her dorm.