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7/6/07: I can't believe it, but I've finally started my helicopter flight training. My first .9 is now officially logged and I'm still flying high even though my feet are back on the ground.


The weather here in NC was perfect for a first flight, just a slight left quartering headwind, great visibility with just a few high clouds.


My instructor Craig and I hit it off right away, and after thoroughly covering SFAR 73 we walked out to the ramp for my first R22 preflight. He took the time to explain everything on the checklist as we went through it. Exterior checklist done, we sat in the cockpit and went over the systems, once again with a full explanation of checklist items and other critical things I should know. Engine startup, post start checks and we were off, with me shadowing on the controls.


Once we were at altitude, the cyclic was mine with Craig shadowing, it really takes a gentle touch to not over control and I got the general hang of it after a while, the key is to keep your eyes out of the cockpit, just a quick instrument check on occasion will suffice. We did some straight and level, climbs and descents while maintaining airspeed and some pattern work. Back at KLHZ and a hover demonstration to end the lesson, don't even ask me how that went ;)


I'm happy with Craig and we are scheduled to go up again on Wednesday 7/11. The biggest challenge is fitting in training with my travel schedule. The only upside is I always have lots of quiet hotel time to hit the books.



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