Tuesday, 3 December 2013

Go West

Bob and I had agreed that I’d still fly despite the cancelled cross country. I was expecting a “usual deal flight”. Go east, do some instrument work, a diversion or two, at some point my engine would mysteriously fail and then some more instrument stuff on the way back.

I was mildly surprised to receive a text saying “we’ll plan for a dual flight, hint look up the entry for CYKF.”

I frowned a little, I do not recognise that airport code. At all. Not one of my usual haunts. Hmm, how to look up an airport whose name you don’t know? I  plug the 4 letter code into my airport weather app and am mildly surprised when it spits back Kitchener Waterloo as the result.


I’ve never been out west before (at least not as the pilot). Okay I guess this really is going to be a blind navigation exercise. You see recently I’ve started to suspect that my “map reading” out east is more the fact that I have a lot of the landmarks memorised. That ain’t going to work here for sure.

Bob’s really on to me and my “cheats”. No chance of following a convenient highway either. He’s going to instruct me to fly to a point and I have to draw it on my chart, figure out a heading and then fly us there. All the time checking that what I see in front of me matches what’s on the chart. All of this while trying to dodge Pearson’s airspace.


Still I’m up for the challenge and although I’m concerned about how I’m going to manage, I’m not scared per se. Just… …. Concerned I guess. Hard to explain but none of the soul sucking anxiety that pervaded my initial training.

As we head out to the plane to do the walk round, Bob drops the final bombshell “Just so you know, I’ve filed a flight plan for this flight, so we have to bear that in mind as well.”

I look at him in mild horror, gee thanks!

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