The worst day of flight training in my life!!!!!!!!

CaptainHook

New Member
I'm currently wrapping up my flight training towards my PPL. Just as I thought that I was totally ready and confident about scheduling my check-ride, I flew today like if I was just starting to learn how to fly. I don't know if it was the heat wave up here in the NY/NJ area or what, but I was all over the place.
First of all, the point of my flight today was to just practice engine failures, soft and short-field takeoffs and landings, steep turns, deviations, and everything else that my DE might have me do during my check-ride. Let me just say that I don’t know what was happening inside my head today, but I'm actually feeling a little frustrated about my performance.
My bad day began when the control tower cleared me for takeoff on runway 27. My instructor asked me to do a soft-field takeoff. As I began my takeoff roll with nose up, the tower yelled "Cessna 4***D, Abort takeoff!!!" So I immediately hit the breaks. Since there are trees blocking my view between RW 27-09 and the crossing RW 22-04, a king-Air came out of nowhere and landed on RW 22, while another landing plane landing on 27 (same runway that I was taking off in) went for a Go-Around. Now I don’t know what the hell the controller was trying to do, but he almost caused an accident involving three planes.
After my second attempt for takeoff, everything seemed to go smooth until I got up about 1,200’ AGL on RW heading. While scanning for traffic, once again, the controller screwed up again. A Piper Cadet was turning on downwind for RW 22 just a few feet below me. At that time I was so close to hitting the talk button and curse the hell off the controller on duty. From that point on, the rest of my practice flight was a living hell.
While tracking a VOR, my instructor asked me to deviate to an airport southwest of my position at about 15 miles away. Because of the extremely hot weather today, I was being bounced around while trying to draw a straight like on my chart. I must have gained about 200’ in altitude while figuring out my approximate heading for my deviation destination.
As I approached the field, I was 500’ above pattern altitude and advised traffic on my 45 degree entrance for left downwind on RW 25. No other plane seemed to be in the pattern. All of a sudden, Wwweeeoooooooooiiiiinngggg!!!!!!!! A twin-something flew right by me on a modified base-leg without ever entering the pattern. He seemed to be off the radios and just cut in front of my path. I tried not to panic, but I couldn’t help it.
After taking a few breaths, my instructor asked me to perform a short-field landing (I had no choice since it was actually a short-field). While on short final, I threw in the remaining flaps but began to experience enormous updrafts and had a hard time trying to decent. Not even a slip helped me much. My speed was at 60 KTS and was trying to remain that speed for landing. But I was too high, so I went for a go-around. On my second attempt, I came a little lower than before just to try to compensate for the killer updrafts, but then had to add power and climb a little because of high electrical lines right before the RW threshold. Once cleared of the obstruction, I again had a hard time bringing the plane down, and went for another go-around. On my third attempt, I actually established a good approach and seemed to be doing well until I had a hard time trying to get out of ground-effect. Once again, I was running out of RW so my instructor asked me “What are you going to do at this point?” I answered “Go-Around”. I was so frustrated and hyper that instead of adding full power, I raised the flaps up all in one shot in which caused the plane to loose lift and slam against the RW. All I remember hearing was my instructor yell out something, but wasn’t sure what he said. After I cleared the obstacles and regained proper control of the plane, my instructor asked me to just relax and try again (If I was flying a jet, I would of ran out of fuel by then).
Finally, I landed the sucker and thought about abandoning my plane and instructor and take a cab 60 miles back home. While he lectured me on the reasons for my errors, I couldn’t even make up what he was saying because I was so distracted, upset and in shock. For a second there, I thought it was all a bad dream. Once again, my instructor asked me to just relax and take us back up with a short-field takeoff. While on the downwind, he pulled my throttle to idle to simulate an engine failure. I quickly pitched for 65 KTS and seemed to be doing well in controlling the plane all the way to short final. But there it was again. Updrafts pushing me back up while running out of runway causing me to go-around. To make the remaining of this long story short, I had to go-around about two more times after that. My instructor told me that it was OK and that I should not stress about it. He asked me to take us back home and we will practice the landings again on our next flight together.
While heading home, I did pretty well on the stalls, S-turns, and turn-around-a-point. As he asked me to perform a steep turn to the left followed by the right, I began my clearing turns. Then I began a steep turn to the right and it went well. When I established a steep turn to the left, there it was again!!!! A Seneca at my 9 o’clock flew right below be at about 50 feet below my position. And once again, it scared the hell out of me. At this point, I began to believe that I was destined to die today, but I kept cheating death (Just like the movie, Final Destination). The rest of the flight went OK. But as I landed on my home airport, It took me the entire RW to stop the plane (4000’ in length). I parked the plane, grabbed my bag, asked my instructor to just sign my logbook, and drove home. I didn’t even want to stay for another minute. So many things went through my mind while driving home, such as ending my flight training. But I got home, took an hour nap, woke up, and asked myself, “Who am I kidding?” I love flying. I’ve always wanted to be a pilot as far as I can remember. I even found baby photos of myself holding a different model of airplane in each picture.
Has anyone in this thread have ever experienced a day such as mine? If so, please feel free to talk about it! Maybe It will make me feel much better knowing that I’m not the only one that experienced such a horrifying day.
 

EatSleepFly

Well-Known Member
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Has anyone in this thread have ever experienced a day such as mine?

[/ QUOTE ]

Hang in there. Everyone has bad days. A little story about my personal experience with frustration...

When I was working on my CFI, I almost gave up on flying for a living. If Rausda27 reads this, he can vouch for that. In fact, he can probably remember the day that I not-so-quietly proclaimed that I was going to quit. The poor guy rode in the backseat of many a flights while I was working on it (as I did on his).

Stupid little procedural mistakes were adding up, it seemed like my instructor was constantly harping at me for something. I remember one day in particular, I got so frustrated and pissed off at myself, I was ready to throw in the proverbial towel. I had always picked things up rather quickly and done well with my training and never screwed up a flight so much in my life. I told my instructor I was quitting flying. She laughed and said "oh no you're not" (in a tone of voice like a mother scolding one of her kids). That pissed me off even more, because I guess I knew she was right. I had a bad attitude and it was really bringing down my flying. My instructor was always positive and encouraging, and I thank her for that, because other instructors probably would have said "hell with you, ya jackass", and I almost certainly would have agreed and given up. But she didn't and that could very well be the reason that I am where I am now- flying for a living. Things started to come together on the last two flights before the checkride. My self-esteem was so far in the dumps during all my CFI training that I didn't even realize how well she had prepared me. I went into the checkride not really giving a crap whether I passed or not. I was somewhat amazed when I practically aced it. I gave myself an attitude adjustment before I started working on my CFII (with the same instructor- amazing she still was willing to fly with me), and it was a breeze.

Now that I am instructing (and incidentally, really enjoying it), I can see my old attitude in my students. When they get really frustrated, I can empathize- I was there. I now realize how easy it is for an instructor to say "think positive" and how hard it is for a frustrated student to actually do it. But you have to. Attitude makes a huge difference- believe me. So keep your chin up. Everyone gets in a slump sometimes, and with the right attitude, anyone can get out of one.

Good luck!!!
 

E_Dawg

Moderator
First off... everyone has bad days. No problem, as long as you don't do anything rash like quiting flying. This might not be what you want to read right now but....

[ QUOTE ]
Now I don’t know what the hell the controller was trying to do, but he almost caused an accident involving three planes.

--

once again, the controller screwed up again. A Piper Cadet was turning on downwind for RW 22 just a few feet below me.

--

Because of the extremely hot weather today, I was being bounced around while trying to draw a straight like on my chart. I must have gained about 200’ in altitude while figuring out my approximate heading for my deviation destination.

--

A twin-something flew right by me on a modified base-leg without ever entering the pattern. He seemed to be off the radios and just cut in front of my path.

--

I threw in the remaining flaps but began to experience enormous updrafts and had a hard time trying to decent. Not even a slip helped me much.

--

but then had to add power and climb a little because of high electrical lines right before the RW threshold.

--

But there it was again. Updrafts pushing me back up while running out of runway causing me to go-around.

[/ QUOTE ]

Remember that for every bad controller it takes a pilot to follow the bad commands. In every midair at least two planes are involved. There are signs of weather events and things a pilot can do about it.

Not to come across as a d!k... but thinking about what you did wrong and can do better next time will help more than getting angry and blaming it on the updrafts.

In the future... if you get really frustrated it might be best to just land and fly another day instead of pushing a bad situation. That's probably more of your CFI's job but you can always just say that you'd like to land.
 

ready2fly

Well-Known Member
Absolutely had days like that. It's going to happen.

There's a saying that goes: "a bad dress rehearsal means a great show" = meaning - sounds like you got all the bugs out of your system prior to your checkride....

... and that's a good thing.

Doesn't mean you're a bad pilot. Just means you have a lot to learn and always will. We all do.

Good luck! Keep us posted!

R2F
 

rausda27

Well-Known Member
[ QUOTE ]
[ QUOTE ]
Has anyone in this thread have ever experienced a day such as mine?

[/ QUOTE ]

Hang in there. Everyone has bad days. A little story about my personal experience with frustration...

When I was working on my CFI, I almost gave up on flying for a living. If Rausda27 reads this, he can vouch for that. In fact, he can probably remember the day that I not-so-quietly proclaimed that I was going to quit. The poor guy rode in the backseat of many a flights while I was working on it (as I did on his).

[/ QUOTE ]


I remember that flight very well, somewhere between steep spirals and getting hit by Gulfsteams in the pattern I noticed a definitive lack of confidence. But I knew and our instructor knew that you could fly the heck out of the airplane, and your success has proven your lack of confidence was unfounded. You da man....
 

CaptainHook

New Member
Thanks you guys for your replies. I guess everyone does go through this experience atleast once or a thousand times in their lives. Anyways, I was actually having bad dreams last night about my bad day yesterday.
For everyone else who enter this forum, please post similar experiences (If any) that might help other people realize that days like this will come and what can they do to take proper actions (relax, dont fly, etc..)
 

justme

New Member
Hang in there man. We all definately have bad days in the air. My worst one happened to be on my IR checkride...how bad does that suck?!?! I don't know why everything just went to [expletive deleted] on that flight, but it seemd that nothing went right. I'm sure part of it was nerves. And the fact that the examiner was a complete prick didn't help matters either. Needless to say, I busted the ride. It was my worst day flying, but ya just have to try to learn from your mistakes and move on.
 

EatSleepFly

Well-Known Member
[ QUOTE ]
I remember that flight very well, somewhere between steep spirals and getting hit by Gulfsteams in the pattern I noticed a definitive lack of confidence. But I knew and our instructor knew that you could fly the heck out of the airplane, and your success has proven your lack of confidence was unfounded. You da man....

[/ QUOTE ]

Wow, thats gotta be the nicest thing anyone has said about me in a while. Thanks buddy!
 

172_Captain

New Member
[ QUOTE ]
We've all had days like that!
Hang in there

[/ QUOTE ]

Cptnhook,
You are the first pilot in history to have a bad flight, please use caution on all subsequent flights!
Seriously, the most important thing when having a bad flying day is to walk away with >at least< one thing you can use in the future referred to hereafter as "lesson".
 

EatSleepFly

Well-Known Member
[ QUOTE ]
Are Rausda and EatSleepFly stroking each other? I'll be darned! Lol

[/ QUOTE ]

I'm not quite sure what you're implying by that, but as far as I'm concerned you can shove it.


Remember- the toes you step on today might be connected to the ass you have to kiss tomorrow.
 

MikeD

Administrator
Staff member
[ QUOTE ]
ha ha...I'll remember that when I am interviewing you for your first airline job...



[/ QUOTE ]

airlines/pax.......patooie!
 

Visceral

Well-Known Member
[ QUOTE ]
[ QUOTE ]
Are Rausda and EatSleepFly stroking each other? I'll be darned! Lol

[/ QUOTE ]

I'm not quite sure what you're implying by that, but as far as I'm concerned you can shove it.


Remember- the toes you step on today might be connected to the ass you have to kiss tomorrow.

[/ QUOTE ]

I think he was referring to stroking each others <font color="red">EGOS </font> .
 
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