Wednesday, 31 July 2013

Did I do something stupid?

This is a prime example of how I manage to do something completely right and yet somehow manage to persuade myself that I screwed up.

First of all I kind of failed to correctly identify Claremont. Except I didn’t. I was right there all along. But for some reason Brock road didn’t look like Brock road, so I lost my major landmark.  It took me a few minutes to cross check some other landmarks to convince myself that I was actually where I was meant to be.
No harm, no foul but it rattled me a little at the time. Once I landed I was actually quite happy. Getting lost happens but I didn’t panic. I did exactly what Bob told me to. Look for the big stuff.

Lake to the south, check
Transformer station to the west, check

Road running north, south through a village, check
Built up area to the west, check

Two lane highway to the south, check
I’m west of Pickering but east of Markham. I’m not in controlled airspace. I’m good.

North of the 407.
Spot on.

A quick conversation with RTH let me realise exactly what was going on. I’m normally at 2500ft when I ID Brock Road. This time I’d already climbed to 3500. The road just looks like a dirt track from that height. That is what confused me. “Just find the wind turbine and fly due north. Brock road is a sucky land mark,” was his advice.
All was well in my mind, but for some reason I woke up this morning, totally and utterly convinced that I’d started my climb at Bluffers, rather than waiting until the two towers. I was actually waiting for the text from Bob saying “Did you bust Pearson’s airspace by any chance?”

None was forth coming; I tentatively sent a text about our plans for next lesson. Usual back and forth conversation. Not a word.
Finally I persuade myself to view my video, the altimeter isn’t that visible for a lot of the time but I definitely wasn’t super high at Bluffers, if (and it is a big if) I did climb a little prematurely, we are talking maybe 100ft max. No one is going to come chasing after me for that I think.

But honestly, how do I talk myself into these situations?
Again though, valuable learning. You can guarantee that I will never, ever make that climb too early.


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