Short and Soft Field

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Lost prop on checkride: Did he pass?

Article | Sep 06, 2012

Colorado pilot Brian Garrett expected a simulated emergency on his checkride, not a real one. Then, two of his aircraft's three propeller blades tore loose.

User survey asks feedback on Alaska training strips

Advocacy | Aug 29, 2012

You can practice short-field landings on a long, wide runway, but will you have mastered the technique when trying to land in truly tight confines?

Resuming the Journey: Alaska mountain flying

Article | Aug 08, 2012

The two pilots took off in a Cessna 172 from a private 2,200-foot grass strip in Alaska and headed for Wiseman, about 40 miles east. The pilots were going to fly through the mountain passes of the Brooks Range, not over them, using that tried and true navigation: pilotage. The highest peak on the chart was 5,903 feet.

IFR Fix: Checkup to Chester

IFR Fix | Jul 27, 2012

What's the reciprocal of 235 degrees? What's the short-field landing procedure for the aircraft you usually fly IFR? All of that's relevant today because you are taking a proficiency flight to the serene country airfield in Chester, Conn.

Lesson 6 - Resuming the Journey: Come to Kingdom

Article | Jul 10, 2012

At Kingdom Air Corps in Sutton, Alaska, the grass strip is short and the scenery is long on beauty. Lesson six brought real bush flying, breathtaking views of mountains and glaciers, and a chance to practice a short- and soft-field landing - for real. It was another step forward in a journey undertaken by pilot Kathy Dondzila, manager of technical communications in the AOPA Pilot Information Center, returning to the left seat to take on new challenges, and the blessings that come with them.

As 'old school' as it gets

Article | Jul 02, 2012

Old Rhinebeck Aerodrome has for half a century fielded a vintage fleet of pioneer, World War I, and barnstorming aircraft in weekend shows that test the skills of a select group of pilots.

Resuming the Journey: Wrapping up the flight review

Article | Jun 25, 2012

After nearly a decade on the ground, a pilot wraps up a thorough five-lesson flight review. On to soft-field landings, short runways, no towers, and lots of adventure in Alaska.