Never Again

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Never Again

Pilot Magazine | Mar 01, 2003

Early on the morning of an IFR flight from Detroit City Airport in Michigan to Boyne Falls, Michigan, I called Lansing Flight Service for a weather update. There were no known adverse conditions on my proposed route.

Never Again

Pilot Magazine | Feb 01, 2003

You know how you'll have an experience that is so bizarre that you're sure it must be a dream? That's exactly what ran through my mind on the riverbank a quarter mile below the Bering Glacier on Prince William Sound, Alaska, where I was stuck with my Cessna 185 on floats. The Bering River drains Bering Lake, the melted glacier pool at the foot of the Bering Glacier, a Rhode Island-size chunk of ice 200 miles east of Anchorage.

Never Again

Pilot Magazine | Jan 01, 2003

The Bob Dylan concert the night before had been wonderful; now it was time to go home. The previous day I had flown the Piper Aztec from Chatham, Massachusetts, on Cape Cod, up to Montpelier, Vermont, to pick up friends and bring them down to Mansfield, Massachusetts.

Never Again

Article | Dec 01, 2002

An early morning fog muffled our footsteps as my crew and I crossed the cobblestoned courtyard of the old German kaserne (barracks) toward our two helicopters. I could feel the occasional snowflake swirling through the gray morning mist stealing into my uniform, causing me to shudder and chilling me to the bone.

Never Again

Pilot Magazine | Nov 01, 2002

Pilots who fly in the Rocky Mountain West are used to looking at sectional charts that are colored mostly brown. The rewards of mountain flying are many, but so are the dangers.

Never Again

Pilot Magazine | Oct 01, 2002

My son, Kirk, and I were ready to begin a flight home from Trinity Center, an unattended airport in northern California, when we found that the alternator on our rented Piper Warrior wasn't working. There were no maintenance facilities in the area, so we decided to get airborne and turn off all the electrical equipment until we got to an airport with a mechanic.

Never Again

Pilot Magazine | Sep 01, 2002

I don't see how the guy could have flown that Taylorcraft all the way from Flushing, New York, to Valley Forge, Pennsylvania, with the prop setting up such an incredible vibration! For that matter, I can't figure out how, on that same day in 1955, I gave him $900 for such a rough-looking airplane without even a test hop! But the day he flew it down for me to look at brought about one of those sudden thaws that can turn a grass strip into a bog, scratching the test flight. And I had always yearned for a T-craft.

Topics Technique

Never Again

Pilot Magazine | Aug 01, 2002

I was commuting on a weekly basis in my Grumman AA-1 Yankee between Hanford, California, deep in the heart of the San Joaquin Valley, and Oakland. The California winter had arrived, and the jet stream had dropped down from Seattle to bring us our share of Pacific fronts.

Never Again

Pilot Magazine | Jul 01, 2002

An original "Never Again" story is published each month on AOPA Online (www.aopa.org/pilot/never_again/). I wanted my friends to experience the joy of small-airplane flight, so we decided to take an afternoon and picnic in the Wenatchee Mountains.

Never Again

Pilot Magazine | Jun 01, 2002

An original "Never Again" story is published each month on AOPA Online (www.aopa.org/pilot/never_again/). Thunderstorms can be dangerous, especially when you fly a light aircraft into them.

Never Again

Pilot Magazine | May 01, 2002

New is one of the most exciting words for a pilot. A new GPS or a new person to introduce to aviation adds to the thrill of flying.

Never Again

Pilot Magazine | Apr 01, 2002

Some 10 years ago my flying buddy, Charlie, and I planned a flying trip from Chico, California, in the Sacramento Valley, to Eureka, on the northern California coast. It was early spring and the first weekend since January that it had not rained.

Never Again

Pilot Magazine | Mar 01, 2002

It was a lazy, sunny Southern California Saturday in the winter of 1998, when my morning paper reading was interrupted by the ringing telephone. My son was calling from Mammoth Mountain, where he had been skiing with his father.

Never Again

Pilot Magazine | Feb 01, 2002

I was a new pilot, and I was feeling increasingly confident about my flying. This particular flight was supposed to be fun — a routine night flight to sharpen my skills and spend quality time with my 10-year-old daughter, Stephanie.

Never Again

Pilot Magazine | Jan 01, 2002

In January 1998, on Super Bowl Sunday, I logged a few frightening moments of glider time in a Cessna 172. Only seconds after passing over the numbers on the departure end of the runway on takeoff, I faced one of a pilot's worst nightmares: sudden and complete engine failure.

Never Again

Pilot Magazine | Dec 01, 2001

My wife and I flew a Piper Tri-Pacer from Fort Worth, Texas, to my sister's home in Washington, D.C., on December 22, 1952, to visit my mother for the last time before she passed away from cancer. L was a young, struggling flight instructor, and this was the third time in three months that my boss had graciously lent me one of his airplanes and given me the time off to make the trip.

Never Again

Pilot Magazine | Nov 01, 2001

A perfect day for flying: Visibility is 10 miles or greater, the ceiling is unlimited, and the winds are light and variable. My plan is to fly from Macon to Griffin, Georgia, and have lunch with my son.

Never Again

Pilot Magazine | Oct 01, 2001

After you go through the checklist, you're still not finished assessing the airplane. You should maintain constant vigilance — I realized this the hard way on a beautiful fall day in the Pacific Northwest.

Never Again

Pilot Magazine | Sep 01, 2001

The weather was typical of a mid-September day in the Southeast. A cold front had swept through the area the day before our afternoon flight from Winston-Salem, North Carolina, to North Myrtle Beach, South Carolina.

Never Again

Pilot Magazine | Aug 01, 2001

I own (and fly as often as I can) a 1968 Piper Cherokee 180D. It's an aircraft that gives me a great deal of pleasure, and it has always behaved very well.

Never Again

Pilot Magazine | Jul 01, 2001

In the summer of 1977, I flew with a colleague from Islip, New York, on Long Island, to Washington, D.C., for a conference with Adm. A.

Never Again

Pilot Magazine | Jun 01, 2001

My boyfriend and I had planned a weekend trip to Las Vegas from our home base on the California coast. The "June gloom" had settled in early Saturday morning but was predicted to lift, according to the weather briefing I had received.

Never Again

Pilot Magazine | May 01, 2001

"State your intentions." Those are three words I'd rather not hear from ATC again. My partner in our aircraft, Brian Inskeep, and I had flown from Greenwood Municipal Airport, south of Indianapolis, to Jeffco Airport in Denver.

Never Again

Pilot Magazine | Apr 01, 2001

The skies were clear in St. Louis as I awoke that early spring morning at 4 to prepare to fly to work as the physician in the emergency department at St.

Never Again

Pilot Magazine | Mar 01, 2001

I had purchased my Piper Cherokee 235 in December, but because the weather had been bad and because of the holidays, I had only flown the airplane 15 hours. I set a goal to practice IFR with a safety pilot and gradually work up to actual IFR.

Never Again

Pilot Magazine | Feb 01, 2001

We were on the second leg of a flight from Long Island MacArthur Airport in New York to Palm Beach International Airport in Florida in a 1965 Cessna 172 Skyhawk. I was flying with the owner of the airplane, Mark Slovin, a student of mine who was working on his instrument rating.

Never Again

News release | Jan 01, 2001

As is typical of the weather in the East in January, the day started out gray and overcast and got progressively worse. I had prepared myself for this weather four months before by training and earning my instrument rating.

Never Again

Article | Dec 01, 2000

In January 1979 the company I worked for was asked to inspect a Boeing B–29 Superfortress bomber housed at the Navy's China Lake Test Facility in Southern California. We were to see if the aircraft could be made flyable for delivery to England.

Topics Weather

Never Again

Pilot Magazine | Nov 01, 2000

"These blind canyon stories have me somewhat upset." I was reacting with this comment to a series of remarks on a favorite Internet site where former Navy and Air Force Douglas Skyraider AD pilots reminisce. These now old and now not-so-bold pilots (the survivors) were recalling young companions then, 30 to 40 years ago, who did not survive flying low-level into blind canyons.

Never Again

Pilot Magazine | Oct 01, 2000

It began as a routine flight on a hot October afternoon. The weather briefer had given me 3,000 scattered and three to five miles' visibility for my flight from our small airport at Roanoke Rapids, North Carolina, to Brunswick County Airport in Southport, North Carolina.

Never Again

Pilot Magazine | Sep 01, 2000

Soon after completing his training and graduation from the Spartan School of Aeronautics, in Tulsa, Oklahoma, my brother purchased a 65-horsepower 1946 Luscombe 8E aircraft for recreational use as well as to build up time for future ratings. The airplane was equipped with only basic instrumentation; i.e., altimeter, airspeed indicator, needle and ball, magnetic compass, and tachometer.

Never Again

Pilot Magazine | Aug 01, 2000

It was late on a bright August afternoon, and I was flying VFR westbound from my home airport in Ottawa, Ontario, Canada, in my V-tail Bonanza at 10,500 feet in clear blue skies. On the horizon ahead, I could see scattered cumulus clouds typical of daytime heating.

Never Again

Pilot Magazine | Jul 01, 2000

Sometimes a really fine stew takes a lot of ingredients and a couple of cooks. That was the case as my wife and I descended toward Grand Strand Airport (CRE) in North Myrtle Beach, South Carolina, many years ago.

Never Again

Pilot Magazine | Jun 01, 2000

It was already dark at 6:30 p.m. The Beech Sundowner, which I had been flying twice a day, almost every day, was nowhere to be seen.

Never Again

Pilot Magazine | May 01, 2000

It was a perfect spring day in Northern California for taking some fellow employees on a pleasure flight to see the San Francisco Bay and Napa Valley. We had just finished a fantastic dinner at Jonseys Steak House at the Napa County Airport and were getting ready to depart in my Piper Turbo Arrow III for San Carlos Airport to drop off one of my passengers.

Never Again

Pilot Magazine | Apr 01, 2000

It had been a long, busy day for my Piper Arrow and me one April evening several years ago. Our early morning flight from Iowa City to Minneapolis terminated in a "max forward speed to the marker" ILS approach.

Never Again

Pilot Magazine | Mar 01, 2000

In November 1992, I had about 15 hours of solo time under my belt, of which probably five hours were on skis. I was on my way to becoming a bush pilot.

Never Again

Pilot Magazine | Feb 01, 2000

It had snowed the night before. The mountains and trees around California’s San Jose Valley were covered with a blanket of white.

Never Again

Pilot Magazine | Jan 01, 2000

December 27, 1997, was a beautiful, still, crisp winter day, and it took me only minutes to decide that I would be spending it in the sky in my Extra 300. Christmas was over, and I was looking forward to a day of aerobatics in the skies near Santa Barbara, California.

Never Again

Pilot Magazine | Dec 01, 1999

Since I fulfilled my lifelong dream of learning to fly, my wife, Jennifer, and I enjoy the time savings an airplane can provide. Jennifer's family is from the South and spends much of the year on Hilton Head Island, South Carolina.

Never Again

Article | Nov 01, 1999

The day was clear and sunny, without a cloud in the sky. The April morning was so quiet that it seemed a shame to break the serenity by starting an airplane engine.

Never Again

Pilot Magazine | Oct 01, 1999

The moonless October evening was dark and unseasonably cold. As I drove up to the hangar, I could see my instrument student preflighting his 1967 Piper Cherokee 180.

Never Again

Pilot Magazine | Sep 01, 1999

The weather could not have been better to give rides to some friends in my Hispano Aviacion Casa Saeta twin-engine jet fighter/trainer. At 8 a.m.

Never Again

Pilot Magazine | Aug 01, 1999

It was the summer of 1971. The weather was promising to be perfect for the upcoming Father's Day Fly-In at the Shelby (Ohio) Community Airport.

Never Again

Article | Jul 01, 1999

During my studies at Ohio State University, I became fascinated with sport parachuting through the local parachute club at Derbydale, Ohio, just outside of Columbus. By the time I graduated, I was considered an experienced skydiver, competing and being paid for exhibition jumps.

Never Again

Article | Jun 01, 1999

As a major part of my 25-year job as an avionics technician, I have the responsibility of returning aircraft to service after avionics work has been performed. I have to go on many test flights in all types of corporate and private aircraft.

Topics Technique

Never Again

Pilot Magazine | May 01, 1999

I needed to ferry my Cessna 150 from Morgantown, West Virginia, to its new base and my new home in Columbia, South Carolina. I was a VFR private pilot with 122 hours, mostly in my 150.

Never Again

Pilot Magazine | Apr 01, 1999

The early summer Sunday had dawned pleasantly. I unlocked the hangar, pulled out the airplane, and did my preflight.

Never Again

Pilot Magazine | Mar 01, 1999

As an AirLifeLine pilot, I thoroughly enjoy flying patients to and from places for medical care. On one such trip I took a 4-year-old patient and her father to the Cincinnati Municipal Lunken Field from my home base at the Manassas (Virginia) Regional Airport.

Never Again

Pilot Magazine | Feb 01, 1999

In an attempt to add some experience to an otherwise dull aviation résumé, I wangled a part-time job flying an old Cessna 320 Skyknight throughout the western United States. "Part-time" became many hours of flying — all single pilot — mostly at night.