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Dogfight | For the holidays

Pilot Magazine | Dec 01, 2011

Editor at Large Tom Horne and Senior Editor Dave Hirschman have a lot of things in common: lots of ratings, lots of experience in lots of airplane models—and lots of opinions (as well as similar haircuts). We last turned them loose on the topic of NDB approaches and the response to two different schools of thought on this topic garnered interesting opinions from a large number of readers. However, this month the two veteran aviation writers put down their dueling pens and -- in the spirit of the season -- agreed to focus on what they both appreciate about general aviation.

Challenges: Powerless flight

Pilot Magazine | Nov 01, 2011

I had anticipated that my first few moments of unpowered flight might be disconcerting. (The engine failures I've had in single-engine airplanes over the years sure created some anxious moments.) But separating from the towplane 3,000 feet over the heavily forested ridges of the Allegheny Mountains of central Pennsylvania produces just the opposite effect.

Hangar Talk

Pilot Magazine | Aug 01, 2011

“The combination of a Waco Classic radial-engine biplane, sparkling autumn weather, and a whole continent to fly across was like an aviation fantasy,” Senior Editor Dave Hirschman says of the autumn 2010 flight from Maryland to AOPA Aviation Summit in Long Beach, California (“Epic Flight: 88 Magical Aerial Miles”). “Throw in some good friends and talented professionals like John McKenna of the Recreational Aviation Foundation, videographer Jim Clark, and AOPA Photographer Chris Rose and you’ve got the makings of an unforgettable flying adventure.” The highlight of a trip full of spectacular scenes took place above the winding Colorado River where the raging waters carve through the ancient and dramatic western landscape.

Never Again: Post-maintenance surprise

Pilot Magazine | Jun 01, 2011

It was a nice Texas early fall day in 1992. I had received my private pilot certificate the previous year and had about 75 hours as pilot in command.

Out in the cold

Pilot Magazine | Mar 01, 2011

The PiperSport seemed like the perfect airplane for launching a new flight school designed for sport pilots, and Tim Fleming bought the airplane after a single demo flight. Sleek, sturdy, and roomy, with an expansive bubble canopy and an airframe parachute, the all-metal airplane could attract the youthful, technology-embracing new student pilots that Fleming sought.

GA Serves America: Back to life

Pilot Magazine | Mar 01, 2011

This past fall, the state of Maine “killed” one of its most pristine, isolated wilderness trout ponds in order to save it. Seaplanes (and two Black Hawk helicopters) played a necessary, vital support role in making it possible.


Pilot Magazine | Jan 01, 2011

I can’t think of enough superlatives to describe the astonishing scenery and the gorgeous airplane photography gracing Dave Hirschman’s November 2010 article, “Epic Flights: Coastal Maine in Autumn” in AOPA Pilot. But, I am at a complete loss as to why the front seat of that Waco YMF–5C didn’t have at least one body in it.

Avionics overkill?

Article | Dec 01, 2010

The idea of making a single-seat aerobatic airplane into an IFR platform seemed dubious from the start. My Vans RV–3 is designed for maneuverability, not stability.

Hangar Talk

Article | Nov 01, 2010

Every pilot who sticks with it long enough encounters those rare moments when all of flying’s myriad variables seem to align. A favorite airplane, a stunning location, perfect weather, and talented friends come together to create unique and unforgettable flying experiences ( “Epic Flights: Coastal Maine in Autumn,”).

'AOPA Pilot' Online

Article | Nov 01, 2010

Epic Flights: Coastal Maine in Autumn What’s it like to cruise smoothly around a beautiful, rugged island in a classic Waco biplane, the wind kissing your cheeks and the rumble of the big radial making music as you fly? Ask Senior Editor Dave Hirschman, who experienced this epic flight around Maine’s Mount Desert Island on a gorgeous autumn afternoon. View this online video and slideshow, which celebrates the freedom flying gives us to enjoy spectacular vistas only general aviation can deliver.