29R - Nothing but blue skies...

Weather: KBJC 121350Z 32006KT 60SM SCT080 23/09 A3029

Fear is a necessity. Without a bit of fear every now and again, I seem to develop an unhealthy hubris; a comfort that takes away my concentration. I relax my guard too much. Due diligence takes a back seat in situations where it should always stay in the forefront. I have not yet lost my fear while flying, however I did plan on writing a quick note about how easy it seams to fly. Generally this is true too. In the right conditions, the plane flies itself. It’s designed to fly. But I have to concentrate a great deal while flying to make sure everything is going well. I don’t want to lose that concentration. A bit of fear every now and again helps.

Today I was practicing a power on stall (I have done this before). With full power, I have to add quite a bit of right rudder to keep the plane straight. So I nose up and finally get the plane to stall. The controls get soft and the plane starts to fall. I relax the back pressure to level out and I’m not paying attention to how much right rudder I have in. So as the plane starts to level, the rudder puts us into a hard right turn and it feels like the plane is basically slipping sideways out of the sky. I got that great feeling you get when you’re falling on a roller coaster, where your stomach drops out. But it was much more disconcerting because I wasn’t sure what was going on. I quickly recovered from both the stall and the right turn, but for a moment, there was a definite moment of fear.

It’s good to know that you can recover from something like that, and that I was able to do it successfully. It really wasn’t very dangerous, just a bit shocking. Moments like that keep my over-confidence in check but also help me affirm my skill. So I practiced one more stall to PTS and gave myself a quick pat on the back.

My goal while flying should be constant vigilance.



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