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Aviation => Pilot/Controller Forum => Topic started by: jovanni on February 18, 2010, 08:42:51 AM

Title: cross country
Post by: jovanni on February 18, 2010, 08:42:51 AM
Hi, I'm a student pilot in Long Island, NY. I was told the major cross country involves flying upstate NY, visiting 3 airports, and then return. I was thinking that between the mountains & the fast changing weather, it's kind of dangerous for a student to fly there solo the first time. I was wondering what experienced pilots think about it & what there first cross counrty was like? Thanks.
Title: Re: cross country
Post by: captray on February 18, 2010, 08:54:06 AM
Hey there jovanni,
It's nothing to worry about, I have been instructing in the Berkshires for over 15 years. My students long cross country is either; to Portland Maine or Syracuse, NY. depending on weather and if the TFR is in place around Kennebunckport.
When you are ready your instructor will send you out, The weather will be good and you will be ready.
I do understand that going a long distance can be scary at first but this trip is a confidence builder as well as a learning tool.
It will be a long day, but when you finish you will have a real sense of accomplishment!

Good Luck! and keep us informed.

PS My students are nervous about NY airspace, so it's all about what you get used to!
Title: Re: cross country
Post by: jovanni on February 18, 2010, 09:20:02 AM
Thank you, I'll let you know about it afterwards. NY Airpace, NY roads, both are just as crazy I'm sure.
Title: Re: cross country
Post by: KHAOS on February 19, 2010, 12:42:15 AM
The way we've done it out here is a dual XC out to a destination with the instructor, then the next flight would be your solo to the same place; just so you at least know what to expect and so that there's no rude surprises when you actually solo.  At least out here it's safer that way.  

My first XC was a dual flight from the Salt Lake City area (KBTF) to Pocatello, ID (KPIH).  On the return, we made a loop through Preston, ID then Logan, UT (KLGU) to Ogden, UT (KOGD) and back to our starting point (KBTF).

My solo was going to be to repeat the route again, but low clouds at the UT/ID border prevented me from going any farther than Logan.  I ended up going to Logan for touch and goes, and then to Ogden for full stops.  Quite a fun ride.  The plane definitely handles better without my instructor in it!  Got some of my best landings yet on that trip.

The latest XC I did was from Bountiful, UT (KBTF) to Burley, ID (KBYI) then over to Twin Falls (KTWF) and back to KBTF.  That was a treat and a 1/2.  I've got videos from that in another thread on here.  

I'll be doing my last XC as a student next week, then my checkride and hopefully I'll be done with my Private.  

My advice - don't stress too much.  You've flown that aircraft before, you can do it again without somebody there.  Be precise in your planning.  Use navaids as backup to your pilotage skills.  Get the big picture before you go - get an idea of the airspace you'll be flying in and who you'll be talking to along the way.  If you get out there and things change in a hurry and it's not safe to continue, call it off and return home, no worries.  

But most of all, relax, kick ass and take names.  It's your time to have fun!
Title: Re: cross country
Post by: tomgallagher on March 05, 2010, 08:05:05 AM
Take a deep breath, shake it off and go. Should not be a problem and remember to get your log book signed.
Title: Re: cross country
Post by: captray on March 07, 2010, 02:34:18 AM
Funny you should mention the log book signing. While not a  requirement, I have always advocated having students get their books signed.

1. Gives them a break from thinking about flying.
2. Builds in some time to recheck, flight planing, fuel, ect.

I have found that if you just do a stop and go, while legal, can put too much pressure on just filling the blanks and not enough emphassis on the fun part of flying!
Title: Re: cross country
Post by: SoloWing9936T on March 08, 2010, 09:06:41 AM
I'm from Long Island too based out of Brookhaven. The airports I flew to for my VFR XC flights were KPOU and KHFD. I haven't really flown north of there although i did fly out of KSCH for the regional competition a few months ago. The mountains up there can kick off quite a bit of turbulence on a windy day but that might be a good place for you to fly if you want to get a taste of mountain flying. It's roughly 2 and half hours to fly there and back.