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What is your best flying moment?

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#41 Linc


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Posted 24 January 2007 - 16:37

I would like to echo Kuma's experience of chasing animals. I remember chasing a bird at night in NTC under googles at 5' AGL and a desert fox in Iraq between Mosul and Irbil. Both great times.

However, since I am a Cavalry pilot, I would be remiss if my best moments in helicopters didn't include firing the weapons. Three distinct moments of firing 2.75-inch rockets. The first was the first time I ever fired live 10-pounders and scored a direct hit on the target! The second was the next day when we did convoy live fire training and I couldn't miss. The third was two days at the Joint Readiness Training Center during live fire. I hit a hulk that the O/Cs couldn't remember ever being hit before and then the next day, in front of the ground pounders doing their convoy training, I drove a blue spear into the heart of a target hulk (think junkyard pickup truck) and it lifted completely off the ground. When we landed to debrief with them, they just wanted to know who shot that rocket!

Many, many, many more good times, but not enough forum webspace to discuss them all.


For this gull, though, it was not eating that mattered, but flight. More than anything else. Jonathan Livingston Seagull loved to fly.

#42 67november


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Posted 24 January 2007 - 16:46

some people have all the fun :D
spinning wings are better than fixed.

#43 FLHooker


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Posted 17 March 2007 - 17:51

I must say that my best day in a helo was only 5 months ago, Lucas stagefield, outside of Ft. Rucker, AL in the mighty TH-67, learning how to hover and do standard auto's on the same day... what a feeling... That being said, I should start the CH-47D course in 2 weeks, the first day I pull up on the thrust and bring it to a hover... THAT will surely be a great day. Then again, any day that I defy gravity is a great day.

Full right pedal, stare at the OAT gauge until impact...

#44 Pogue


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Posted 17 March 2007 - 21:32

Today was pretty cool when 5 Harriers joined us in the pattern.

#45 Optigirl


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Posted 27 August 2007 - 20:21

Hello everyone im Lana,

My best moment wasnt really flying, but building with my Dad in the back yard, I know some may think Gyros are not real helicopters, But they are the perfect project for a teen and her father.

My love for helicopters starts there, In the back yard with a welder and a set of plans and my Dad, It doesnt get any better than that.

My next best moment was flying the first time by myself. To see the world layed out below me. spotting things on the ground that we take as normal everyday. But look somehow diffrent and take on meaning in a new way.


#46 oldwarriorpilot



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Posted 20 September 2007 - 15:50

I must side with LINC on this, of all the really fun and exciting things that I have done with helicopters in my 30 or so years of flying, the thing I miss the most and will always yearn for again is rolling in hot with a K/W and hearing that fifty cal pounding away or rippling a full can of 17 pounders. Air Cav

#47 nicepants


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Posted 25 September 2007 - 12:34

3 moments for me, and I'm less than 11 hours in:

- Intro ride, you couldn't have wiped that smile off my face for anything. I got goosebumps as we lifted off the ground and I get that same rush every time I take off.

- On my 2nd or third lesson, we landed at our small airport, looked up and saw a V-22 Osprey circling the airfield, he went vertical and landed that monster. It was probably 10x bigger than any other plane that regularly lands there. It was a blast to see, and if my roommate hadn't been waiting in the car, I would have gone over for a closer look. Beautiful machine.

- A couple of lessons ago, my first auto. It was ok...second one, my instructor didn't touch the controls (just called out 3...2...1) and I carried it out "perfectly", making our landing spot, keeping RPMs in the green, and bringing the ship to a steady hover. For a maneuver that I'd been somewhat worried about, I exceeded my own, and my instructor's expectations. After the flight he told me "no one ever gets them that fast". (Well, it is a small school, and he did start at Silver State, but it still made me feel good)
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#48 mechanic


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Posted 04 October 2007 - 21:50

This is all I have to offer, lol,

At about 1.5 hrs I was keeping a hover in the training box, but just barely, with all 3 controls. I also was kind of freaking with a cross wind, though. I had a previous flight having trouble with the wind, seems it was about 14 kts or so constant.

Anyways, my next flight the light bulb came on in my head. I could hold a pretty good hover with winds pretty light, so my cfi said lets do some quickstops again. After about the 3rd one she said you have the helicopter to do what ever you want to practice, wanting me to get comfortable with it, R22. So I did another quickstop, pulled some power, lowered the tail slightly, and did a near perfect 180* left pedal turn and transitioned to a air taxi back to the starting point for the quickstop again.

My CFI was looking at me, I thought she was mad at me for doing that because we had been hover taxing back to the starting point. I said did I do something wrong? She said she was wondering where that came from, because she could not believe she was flying with the same person she flew with having trouble hovering just 2 days before. I said I just thought about what I wanted and the heli seemed to read my mind.

I am thinking I had about 5 hours, she made the remark that she could not do any of that at about 10 hours, even hover over a given spot. She said she never had a student flip the light on that quick. That made my day for sure. I finally knew that I could do this heli thing.

The wind thing really made me sick, literally. I was so affraid I was going to mast bump in the wind. I would get a headache and get sick to my stomach. I am glad that passed.

Good stories everyone.



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Posted 08 October 2007 - 17:37

Memorable, maybe not the best....

We were at Sturgis doing rides in our Entrom 280C for the Bike Rally. As usual, it's hot (100+) , no wind, doing rides from 6:30 am to 8:30 pm non stop. 2 minute rides, 19 second turns (passenger changes), and an hour wait time in line....
Just so happened I had just fueled. A 300 # biker was my next rider. Sorry, only one this time. He was so wide I was hanging out of the door a little. Obviously no room for the normal middle passenger. Max gross weight + Density Altitude. Ride went great, he screemed at the normal spots in the routine and was all smiles. On approach about 75 feet AGl, the points welded closed due to a misadjustment by a mechanic, so engine decided to stop. No problem, closing in on my 4,000 hop for the summer. Perfect auto to the spot. He high fived me and got out. My chief pilot was coming over with the next load...didn't even notice the engine was not running. Got the passenger out and started loading... I looked at him and gave him the "we're done" signal. He looked confused. He now noticed the blades slowing. He said, "What's up?" as he looked back at the huge line of customers, then back at me....

When I told him what happened, he said, "damn....thought you made a perfect landing, didn't even know it was a full down auto!"

Coming from him it made me feel good, since my autos usually are ok, not perfect. Really boosted my confidence.

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#50 twidget007



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Posted 08 October 2007 - 20:04

My best flying moment........After boring my family all these years of flying helicopters, sending my family on helicopter rides with other people flying. I finally took my Grandfather flying. Just him and I. He's my hero. I took my brother and mother as well but the flight with my Grandfather was my favorite. Everythng else that follows is icing on the cake.

BTW-500+ hr. pilot, commercial rated. Not a CFI.

#51 FauxZ


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Posted 09 October 2007 - 23:56

I can't say that I've had a "best" moment, so far they are all great (400+ish hours). However, it did feel pretty good the first time a student did a hover auto without me having to touch the controls. I still laugh a little bit each time that happens.

#52 DakarNick


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Posted 07 November 2008 - 21:31

Wow, more than a year old...

Anyway. Let's see, I have been in 2 different helicopters, 2 different times.

My first memorable was of course cyclic and pedal hovering on my intro flight with Clay. He was calm and relaxed and made me feel comfortable.

The 2nd, and only other time, was when I flew back seat in a TwinStar. It was a charter flight to fly some politicians around to look at the new reservoir outside of town. They had a meeting at the museum I work at (maintenance). I was in charge of clearing the parking lot and getting the landing zone prepped.

After a few flights of ferrying some guys around, there was only two passengers, so the events girl and I both got a free ride on their last flight over the reservoir.

Pretty cool! I am sure I will have more stories in the years to come!

#53 Dreamin of a Commuter 2B

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Posted 26 January 2009 - 09:31

<font color='#000000'>my best/favorite moment was 31 yrs ago at the tender age of 15 when i strapped into a bell 47 on the canadian side of niagara falls... i still remember as we came light on the skids... awesome.. :cool:</font>

that where I got my first Helicopter ride also, in an Bell-47 I was 8 years olds and still have the pic of it.

if I could figure out how to post a pic I would attache it.

best was first time I was at the controls of a B model hughes hovering in feild and a gust of wind put us in TL ,the helicopter climbed back and to the right.and I made the right control inputs to regain a steady hover at about 30 feet up,the instructors looks over at me laughing and says what are you doing up here.and I said you tell me.

he then says, rememer you where asking what the helicopter does when it transistions? and goes on to explian that you don't have to be moveing forward to enter TL.

made me feel good that first time at the controls I was able to recover from the unexpected.

Coolest flight,was helping a guy with rides at an airshow, some airshow people knew i had experance around helicopters so I got drafted to load and unload passengers.now heres wher it gets fun. for some reason that year they bused people to and from the airshow from a local high school 3 miles away. anyway after the flights the last bus had already left so me and another guy helping where stranded at the airport.
the guy flying the R-44 flew us in to a grass feild at the high school parking lot and dropped us off.he did a high speed approuch with a quick stop. did a hovering 180 set down 50 feet from my car.let us out and then departed. beats the Bus ride anyday. :)

Edited by Dreamin of a Commuter 2B, 26 January 2009 - 11:05.

#54 West Coaster

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Posted 27 January 2009 - 14:33

Just a few favorites off the top of my head:
- Humming along in an S76 at 211 kts ground speed and 500' off the water, wee bit of a tail wind.
- first scene call flying air ambulance.
- chasing black bears in an R22 during CPL training
- first time someone paid me to fly something (right seat co-jo in S61-N on ferry flight)
- first time I was cut loose in the S76 alone on a ferry flight
- getting to fly a European King around in a 206L. that flight coincided with my first bird strike.... with HRH onboard :lol:
- impromtu formation flying with another S76 air ambulance

#55 CFIAP5544


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Posted 27 January 2009 - 16:03

Flying over the Northern Cali Coast jamming to tunes cruising over dolphins and whales!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

#56 MN Heli Flyer

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Posted 29 January 2009 - 15:57

The first real memorable flight was on a dual cross country at night. We flew over downtown Minneapolis near the tall buildings and I remember how bright the lights were.

The second most memorable experience I had was when I went to the RHC course. I did some extra flying while I was in town and we did a night landing at LAX on the heli pad. On another flight we flew along the coast for a while as the sun was setting. This was the first time I have seen the ocean. It was a GREAT TIME!!
"Whether you think you can or you think you canít, youíre right."
Henry Ford

#57 helipilotm


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Posted 08 March 2009 - 02:10

The first was when I soloed. I was so nervous that I dont remember taking off. I had just turned downwind and looked over and saw how big the 22 seemed without a CFI sitting there.

The second is when I had my first student solo. We entered the pattern at out local airport and did a few approaches. I decided it was time so I grabbed the hand held and hopped out. I looked over at my student and the look on his face was pricless.

I had just finished up instructing for the day and was getting ready to go home. We had a 205 in our hangar and one of the pilots walked in and asked who wanted to go with him to ferry it to NM from Ut. I said I would love to and he said to get my stuff and lets get moving. We got in and he started it he told me I would be flying the whole way. We landed in NM and he told me I did a great job. This was coming from a guy who had 10K+. That was a big boost of confidence for me.

The last one was when I got turned lose in the 206L.

#58 06HeliMAN



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Posted 13 April 2009 - 12:09

A little while ago when in Philadelphia Mississippi as a new private pilot on a 250 nm cross country flying patterns when six AH64s joined me in the pattern. After we all had landed, the pilots of these Apaches piled around my little Robinson just mesmerized at its small size.
No rotor blades, No fun..

#59 Ryan CFI

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Posted 20 June 2011 - 14:00

I have only been flying a couple years, and it is already impossible to pick one moment.

My first solo would obviously be up there. My CFI weighed 220lbs, so the little 22 was a whole different ship with him gone. Must of spent 3 minutes light on the skids before I got the courage to lift off.

Even better than that was when I sent my first student solo. He had never recieved instruction from anyone but me. When I decided to hop out he had 21 hours and I knew he was ready. I had my handheld in hand and found a spot in the shade to relax. I sat there for about 30 minutes watching his flight, listening to his radio calls, knowing that I was the one who taught him how to do it. It was such a rewarding feeling, and I get it each and every time someone solo's or passes a checkride. It is my favorite aspect of instructing, hands down.

Perhaps my best flight was taking my father up. A man of little praise to begin with, he wasn't exactly supportive of my crazy idea to become a helicopter pilot. Tried to talk me out of it more times than I can recall. I had my CPL and was working towards my CFI and decided to rent a R-22 and take a few people up. First on my list was the grumpy old man himself. We flew from Punta Gorda down to Everglades City to eat lunch at a resturant he always talked about going to in the 1970's. We followed the beach south and he really seemed to enjoy himself, although he said little.

After lunch we headed back to Punta Gorda. The winds had picked up and we had a 25knot headwind with gusts in the upper 30's. My father never shows fear, but I could tell he wasn't 100% confident in the tiny helicopters ability to handle the conditions, not to mention the 200 hour pilot next to him. I had actually flown in worse winds and wasn't bothered by it at all. We landed back at Punta Gorda and as I was wrapping the ship up for the night he patted me on the shoulder and said, "You are one hell of a pilot, and now I know why you love flying these damn things so much." Without doubt the biggest compliment and most praise I have ever got out of him. Ever since that day he brags to anyone that will listen about his son being a helicopter pilot. (Even though I'm still a R-22 CFI, lol)

Those would probably be my best moments. However the little things like watching the sun rise while flying over the Everglades, taking the foggles of on an ILS approach and being lined up right in front of the runway, or nailing a full touchdown auto are all pretty wonderful. All reasons why I love flying "these damn things".

#60 SBuzzkill


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Posted 09 July 2011 - 19:46

Chasing a wild pig through a field under NVGs hanging out the door of a 58D.

Or the first time shooting the .50 cal and rockets.

Edited by SBuzzkill, 09 July 2011 - 19:46.

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