Did you know that most flights around towered airports with radar are recorded? Well, you do now! Below is my pattern work on Saturday afternoon. My morning flight was a short cross-country with pattern work at an un-towered airport about 20 minutes away. You can watch most of the flight here.

I find it interesting that the first contact is right on the airport, but the locations throughout the flight are definitely off a bit. Several of the landings look right, but many of them are way off, especially when Hooks Tower switched me to right traffic toward the end of the flight. You can also see when the tower instructed me to extend the downwind leg. There was a lot of traffic landing, so I had to wait my turn. The most interesting traffic was a Lear Jet that landed after me and took off again after I landed at the end of the day.

I know it must look boring going around in circles, but each landing was a challenge. The winds were blowing straight down the runway and my little Cherokee didn’t want to land. My instructor and I were having some communication difficulties too. Instead of a simple “flare,” he’d get a little excited and repeat himself. So, I’d flare some more, then we would float up, then we had to adjust for being too high, then flare some more, then....

I finally asked him to just let me land the plane and only step in if things were getting out of hand. After a near-perfect landing on my own, he realized his verbal corrections were just screwing me up. From that point on, it was smooth landings. I still have a lot of work to do, but if I can get more time in the plane, I should solo soon.