You’ve probably heard of the most thrilling part of becoming a pilot – your first solo flight! It involves the pilot landing safely without any other passengers (not even a flight instructor span).
Sounds like loads of G-force and adrenaline rush? Well, ’cause it indeed is! On top of that, the nerves of your first lone flight can get under your skin.
But does that mean you should have second thoughts before your first solo flight? Hell no!
Quite the opposite. Your solo flight should be a stepping stone to a glorious aviation career that awaits you. So, you’ve got to enjoy your flight and pat yourself on the back for how awesome a pilot you are.
Still, there are a few things you need to know before you step foot in that cockpit all alone. Keep reading this article to know more!
Fair-Weather is a Must
It doesn’t matter how ready you are for your solo flight; clear skies and good visibility are a must. Expect your instructor to make sure that the weather does not cause any additional difficulties. This will allow you to relax as you won’t need to fly solo in poor visibility or crosswinds.
Your flight instructor will also accompany you to ensure safe landings and perform well in the conditions. The truth is, as you gain more experience, your dependency on the weather will reduce. This means that you can operate the aircraft in much more challenging weather conditions.
Be Ready For The Surprises
Practice some circuits with your instructor first to ensure that the conditions are favorable and you feel at ease in the cockpit on your big day.
You might be surprised when the time comes to fly solo. You might notice a faster acceleration and a quicker rotation speed. While you may think you’ll have these bases covered, hear us out.
Try to imagine the scenario. You are not carrying more weight (your instructor) inside a cockpit. Usually, the aircraft appears lighter during landing and gives off the impression that it doesn’t want to land.
Moreover, you will find yourself surprised at how fast the aircraft climbs out of the airstrip and the speed you leap off it. But don’t worry. It doesn’t mean you can’t fly.
The situation can be different when you’re flying solo, and that’s where you’ll have to adapt to the conditions.
Most pilots are nervous before their big day. And it is normal.
Learning to fly requires that you study, absorb, and integrate multiple categories of information, which you already know.
If you feel fearful, such as if your legs shake uncontrollably or you have panic attacks, be sure to tell your instructor. Don’t be afraid to make mistakes. They will help you learn and control the situation.
You Got This!
Remember that you’re flying solo in an active airspace.
This means other aircraft may be flying near you. Your instructor will inform ATC about every student who takes a solo flight.
ATC will assist you in identifying your position in air traffic. You just need to follow their instructions and not forget what your instructor taught you.
Remember that you’re manning the aircraft. You know the best way to operate it at any given time.
It’s Not Over Yet
Your first solo flight is not complete until you have proved to everyone and yourself that you can safely take off or land on your own.
The instructor will instruct you to first navigate your aircraft safely off the runway following ATC instructions. Next, apply the parking brake and shut down the engine.
Finally, lock the flight controls and then hop off. Once you have taken care of the right landing, you are ready to be a pilot!
From selecting the right aviation school like the Hillsboro Aero Academy to nailing the practice sessions, you’ve killed it all. It’s your big day now; leave no stone unturned to conquer the skies!
So, you think you’re ready for your first solo flight? Drop your thoughts in the comments!