First solo . . . finally!

Windchill

Well-Known Member
Yesterday I was able to take my first solo flight. This event has been long awaited as my next flight was supposed to be a solo when Uncle Sam decided to activate me and deploy me for 5 months. Five months of awaiting the solo and knowing when I returned I would have to take a few flights just to freshen up frustrated me . . . but I took it with a grain of salt.

My fiance came out with me and went up with my instructor and I as we made sure I was ready to solo. I practiced steep turns and power-off stalls for the shear enjoyment of turning my fiance into a nervous wreck, but she handled it well except for the power-off stall. An emergency landing away from the airport, a few touch-and-goes at the field with an emergency landing thrown in there and we were good to go.

I parked the plane so my instructor could endorse what he needed to . . . then I was off. After a preflight, I strapped myself in, and took care of business. I didn't really get to realize he wasn't there as I was busy doing what I needed to do . . . After taxiing out, off I went . . . 'into the wild blue yonder.'

A little hectic, one plane and I were on a collision course but after contacting each other we got it sorted out. I was staying in the pattern for 3 touch-and-goes and he was coming in for a full stop on the runway crossing my active one . . . but he switched to my runway to stay on the same page, and to avoid each other he did a right pattern, me a left, and I told him I would extend downwind to give him space and time to land and get off the runway.

After my first landing, as I lifted off, the tower announced they were open and told me to stay in left pattern. There was a plane coming in on ILS approach tower cleared to land. Knowing this could be a problem, I contacted tower when I was "preparing to make left turn to base runway 26..." even though he told me to contact him as I turned into base. This helped him remember he had me . . . as he said "503 make this a quick final" meaning turn to final now. The plane coming on the ILS was too close and knew it so he told tower he would circle. I landed, took off and the other plane came in. Another potential hazard taken care of.

Traffic was quiet for my third approach and it showed in my landing as I think my final stop landing was the smoothest landing I will ever have in a 172.

It was nice to finally solo and know that up there by myself I have the smarts to get out of potential hazardous situations. I understand this doesn't make me hot stuff and that there will be other times . . . but it's coming along.
 

avi8tor

Well-Known Member
Congrats! You will remember your first solo forever. Did you get your shirt tail cut off?
 

smokey1

Well-Known Member
Congrats man. You got to do touch and goes on your solo? My instructor made me come to a full stop on all 3 landings.

Smokey.................................
 

Windchill

Well-Known Member
Nah, didn't get the shirt cut off but that's okay. My instructor had another lesson to get ready for and was preparing to hop in the plane when I finished. He had enough time to come over, say congrats and shake my hand--then hop in the other plane with a student and take off.

Today, I got to the FBO 2 hours early . . . I thought I was scheduled for 4:30 when I was actually scheduled for 6:00. We would have gone up when I got there but he had a scenic flight scheduled, so he asked, "want to go ahead and solo while I do this scenic flight?"

Of course I couldn't turn that down!
 

ready2fly

Well-Known Member
[ QUOTE ]
Nah, didn't get the shirt cut off but that's okay. My instructor had another lesson to get ready for and was preparing to hop in the plane when I finished. He had enough time to come over, say congrats and shake my hand--then hop in the other plane with a student and take off.

[/ QUOTE ]
That's a shame. Your first solo should be considered as a hugely important milestone by not only you, but your instructor.

Shame he didn't give you more consideration than a slap on the back.

To each his own, I guess.
 

tonyw

Well-Known Member
[ QUOTE ]
That's a shame. Your first solo should be considered as a hugely important milestone by not only you, but your instructor.

[/ QUOTE ]

You know, when I did my first solo, I was kind of like, okay, cool. I wasn't one of the people who floated on home afterwards, because it was something I expected to do. Yes, I felt good about accomplishing it, but not giddy.

I think my instructor was happier about it than I was!
 

Sprint100

Well-Known Member
[ QUOTE ]
You know, when I did my first solo, I was kind of like, okay, cool. I wasn't one of the people who floated on home afterwards, because it was something I expected to do. Yes, I felt good about accomplishing it, but not giddy.

I think my instructor was happier about it than I was!

[/ QUOTE ]

I was the same way. I am always focused on the finishline(the PPL) and soloing was just the halfway mark.
 

ready2fly

Well-Known Member
Eh. Guess I'm just a traditionalist that way then. Each step of the journey for me has been worth remembering.

I don't blow off any of it or disregard any of it as blase'.

Maybe just me though.

To each his/her own. (said that a lot today).

R2F
 

tonyw

Well-Known Member
I'm just not the kind of person who gets too excited about anything and I keep a pretty level head about the things I do. Let's put it this way, when I was playing golf with some buddies, and drained a 25 foot putt a few days ago, I didn't do any fist pumping or anything like that. I just walked on over to the hole and picked up my ball.

When I succeed, I'm kind of like, okay, cool, now what.

It's when I fail that I get emotional.

But don't think for one second that I didn't feel good and that I didn't feel proud when I did that first solo.
 
Top