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Copyright © 2005 AOPA.
| Training Tips |
THE QUIET SIDE
Arrival and departure in airspace bustling with traffic, discussed in the December 23, 2005, Training Tips, can be both hectic and exhilarating for a pilot. It's also essential training. At the far end of the spectrum is airspace-and there's a lot of it out where a pilot flying visually is on his or her own. Cruising with the radios quiet is great fun, allowing time to enjoy the view and the ride. But here, too, a pilot has ample opportunities to have an early warning system to inform you when a change of plans is needed. This is important anywhere, as Thomas A. Horne discusses in the August 2000 AOPA Pilot article "Escape Chutes: What's Your Way Out?"
There are resources available, even when squawking transponder code 1200 and with no assigned frequency set on your com radio. Put other frequencies to work! Airports you pass by have automated weather broadcasts to alert you to local cloud cover and surface winds. On common traffic advisory frequencies (CTAF) at those airports, pilots may discuss conditions. Maybe you aren't receiving radar flight following, by choice or because you are too low for coverage. There is usually an air route traffic control (ARTCC) or approach/departure control frequency covering the airspace-a source of current altimeter settings (see Chapter 7, Section 2 of the Aeronautical Information Manual) and alerts to hazardous conditions. You may also hear pilots giving ride reports-that is, turbulence estimates-to a controller. Navaids appropriately labeled on sectional charts offer hazardous in-flight weather advisory service (HIWAS) reports and transcribed weather broadcasts (TWEBs).
Your chart shows frequencies for contacting Flight Service along your route; you can monitor weather briefings being delivered or pilot reports being filed. The En route Flight Advisory Service (EFAS) is generally available on 122.0 MHz. Tune a spare radio to the well-monitored emergency frequency of 121.5 MHz, discussed in the March 28, 2003, Training Tips.
Pick some routes to study on sectional charts. Think about how you would stay informed, or establish contact, from the remotest places. Now you're ready to tackle the quiet side of the airspace in which we fly.
| Your Partner in Training |
|By now you may have accumulated enough hours and experience to take your private pilot checkride. Or perhaps you are just beginning your training, but you already have those "checkride jitters." The Private Pilot Practical Test Standards tell you everything you need to know to prepare. See AOPA Online to learn more. If you have any questions after visiting our site, call 800/USA-AOPA weekdays between 8:30 a.m. and 6 p.m. Eastern time. |
As an AOPA Flight Training Member, you have access to all of the features within AOPA Online and AOPA Flight Training Online. Login information is available online.
| Flight Training News |
| AIR, INC. TO HOST PILOT JOB FAIR IN DALLAS |
AirTran, Continental, JetBlue, Southwest, and UPS will be recruiting pilots at an airline pilot job fair hosted by AIR, Inc. The job fair is set for January 28 in Dallas. The job fair is expected to draw more than 400 prospective pilots. AIR, Inc. says that recruiters from more than 15 national, regional, fractional, and foreign airlines will be on hand. The event features a career seminar, career enhancement workshops, and an airline forum in which attendees can learn from the airline recruiters what future hiring plans look like. For more information, see the Web site or call 800/538-5627.
U.S. AIR RACE ANNOUNCES 2006 RACE ROUTES
It's not too soon to begin planning your fun flying events for next year. U.S. Air Race Inc.-which annually sponsors the 1,800-nautical-mile Marion Jayne Air Race, plus an air cruise and two one-day 300-nm events-has announced its routes for 2006. Races are planned for July 16 to 23. The Marion Jayne will launch from Hutchinson, Kansas, to the eastern plains of Colorado, and to Rapid City, South Dakota. After an overnight stop, teams will proceed to Montana, North Dakota, and Minnesota before crossing the finish line in Wisconsin. The 300-nm events will be held in Kansas and Wisconsin. The routes contain almost no special-use airspace, according to U.S. Air Race President Patricia Jayne Keefer. For more information, see the Web site. A free entry kit will be available January 1.
AMEs CAN REISSUE MEDICALS FOR CERTAIN CANCER CONDITIONS
Aviation medical examiners now can reissue special issuance medical certificates for pilots with bladder cancer, melanoma, renal (kidney) cancer, or breast cancer. "Under the AME Assisted Special Issuance (AASI) program, these four conditions can now be cleared by the aviation medical examiner after the FAA has initially authorized the special issuance," said Gary Crump, AOPA director of medical certification. The reissuance will be contingent on the pilot presenting the FAA letter of authorization to the AME, plus a current status report from the treating physician confirming continued stability with no adverse changes in the condition, said Crump. The addition of these four conditions to the AASI program is part of the expansion of AME privileges that AOPA announced December 14. For more details, see the complete story on AOPA Online.
MAGAZINE EDITOR GETS SPORT PILOT CERTIFICATE IN ONE WEEK
Advocates hailed the new sport flying regulations as a cheaper, quicker way to get flying enthusiasts into the air. And at least one flight school promised that its intensive training program could turn out sport pilots in one week. Mid-Atlantic Sports Planes of Basye, Virginia, announced on December 20 that it had done exactly that. Davin Coburn, a science editor at Popular Mechanics, earned his sport pilot certificate after logging 22 hours. Coburn had passed the knowledge test before he set foot on the ramp, and his flight instructor called him "intensely focused, highly motivated, and a quick study." But Coburn, 26, was the first to admit it wasn't a cakewalk. In a news release from the flight school, he said, "This was a working vacation. It's one I'll remember for the rest of my life, but at no time did it involve lounge chairs or drinks that come with umbrellas. I flew when I could, and generally studied when I couldn't. The harder you work beforehand, the less your instructor will have to dwell on the basics." That's a lesson any student pilot can take to the flight school.
| Inside AOPA |
2005: A YEAR OF CHALLENGES AND SUCCESSES FOR GA
It has been a year of challenge, of opportunity, of success for general aviation. And 2006 promises more of the same. Into the new year, AOPA will continue the fight to keep the Washington, D.C., Air Defense Identification Zone (ADIZ) from becoming permanent. Also, a showdown is looming over the FAA's budget. Although the FAA's next reauthorization legislation is not due for nearly two years, the agency is already laying the groundwork for a fee-for-service funding system, claiming that the aviation trust fund is going broke, even though numbers from the White House's own Office of Management and Budget disagree. There were vital changes in 2005 regarding the flight service station system. The FAA took the first steps to modernize it by signing a contract with Lockheed Martin. Early indications after the changeover show that pilots are experiencing shorter hold times and more timely service. AOPA's challenge in 2006 will be to ensure that Lockheed Martin delivers the full promise of its FS21 system to pilots. The association will keep pressure on the FAA to deliver more Wide Area Augmentation System (WAAS) instrument approaches. AOPA also will work with the FAA in 2006 as the agency explores the possible benefits of using ADS-B-automatic dependent surveillance-broadcast-nationwide. Of course, AOPA will continue to try to improve general aviation safety through the efforts of the AOPA Air Safety Foundation. During 2006, the foundation will greatly expand its online safety course offerings, seeking to continue the decades-long downward trend in aviation accidents and fatalities. For more, see AOPA Online.
YOU CAN WIN A CHEROKEE SIX IN '06 WITH AOPA's SWEEPSTAKES
In 2006 we'll be giving away a fully refurbished 260-horsepower 1967 Cherokee Six, and it'll be one of the nicest Sixes ever. The airplane now is going through the first stages of its transformation from a well-loved family wagon to a luxury travel machine with the latest in avionics, engine, and airframe speed mods. Of course, it's the Six's load-hauling ability that makes the Cherokee Six a desirable airplane indeed. But there are plenty of other reasons why this airplane has managed to stay in production for nearly 40 years. And why it makes a great sweepstakes airplane. It's easy to fly, forgiving, and has simple systems and fixed landing gear-all of which make for manageable insurance rates for even low-time pilots. Go to our special Web page to read more about your Six in '06. And no, we haven't picked the winner of the 2005 AOPA Sweepstakes Commander Countdown airplane. But we will soon. Stay tuned.
PROTECT YOURSELF: ENROLL IN AOPA LEGAL SERVICES PLAN
Members are using the AOPA Legal Services Plan for consultations at record levels. And the call volume is expected to continue to rise thanks to flight restrictions that have been popping up all over. While AOPA urges pilots to check notams before they fly and remain vigilant once in the air, the AOPA Legal Services Plan is there to help members who find themselves in a jam. But only enrolled members can take advantage of the unlimited free consultation and assistance on aviation legal matters. Enroll online or call 800/USA-AOPA (800/872-2672).
HAVE YOU UPDATED YOUR AOPA MEMBER PROFILE?
To make the most of your membership and allow us to serve you better, please visit AOPA Online and update your personal member profile.
| Training Products |
GLEIM WEB SITE OFFERS FREE TOOLS FOR CFIs
Gleim Publications, publishers of the aviation training manuals with the bright red covers, offers free instructional tools and other goodies for flight instructors. CFIs who provide a certificate number and e-mail address will be added to Gleim's online CFI Directory. In return, they'll receive an analysis of changes to the practical test standards, a flight maneuver analysis sheet, discounts on Gleim products, and more. For more information, see the Web site.
Note: Products listed have not been evaluated by ePilot editors unless otherwise noted. AOPA assumes no responsibility for products or services listed or for claims or actions by manufacturers or vendors.
| Picture Perfect |
|Looking for some really fabulous aviation photography? All the air-to-air photos and beautifully detailed ground images used by AOPA Pilot magazine over the years are yours at the click of a mouse button. Download your favorite images to use for wallpaper, send an e-postcard, or order prints online. For more details, see AOPA Online. |
| Weekend Weather |
|See the current weather on AOPA Online, provided by Meteorlogix. |
| ePilot Calendar |
| FLYING DESTINATIONS THIS WEEKEND: |
Tampa, Florida. Pioneer Pilot's Day takes place January 1 at Peter O. Knight (TPF). This annual event honors all pioneer pilots who were first to accomplish an aerospace event. Contact Robert Bos, 813/784-4669.
Lawrenceville, Georgia. An Aviation Program and Breakfast takes place January 7 at Gwinnett County-Briscoe Field (LZU). For more information, contact Joel Levine, 770/394-5466, or visit the Web site.
St. Louis, Missouri. The 2006 Midwest Aviation Conference takes place January 7 and 8 at the Busch Student Center on St. Louis University. Keynote speakers include Scott Crossfield, Cathe Fish, Dr. Peggy Chabrian, and Rep. Jack Jackson. Come see exhibitors and choose from safety seminars and builders workshops. Contact Jeff Edwards, 636/532-5638, or visit the Web site.
To submit an event to the calendar or to search all events visit AOPA Online. For airport details, see AOPA's Airport Directory Online.
FLIGHT INSTRUCTOR REFRESHER CLINICS
The next AOPA Air Safety Foundation Flight Instructor Refresher Clinics are scheduled in Long Beach, California; Detroit; and Portland, Oregon, January 7 and 8. For a complete schedule, see AOPA Online. Can't make it in person? Sign up for the CFI Refresher Online.
AOPA AIR SAFETY FOUNDATION SAFETY SEMINARS
AOPA Air Safety Foundation Safety Seminars are scheduled in Reno, Nevada, January 2; Sacramento, California, January 3; Santa Rosa, California, January 4; and San Jose, California, January 5. The Topic is "Do the Right Thing-Decision Making for Pilots." For more details and a complete schedule, see AOPA Online.