Saturday, September 8, 2018

Getting Back in the Saddle

After a 4+ year hiatus from flying, I have been itching to get "Back in the Saddle". 

The closest I had been to flying was playing with drone, which was fun .... But nowhere near the same as true flying.  You can see some of my drone pix/videos here:

However, I was dreading the process of getting current... (My medical-=> expired; My instrument proficiency -=> Gone; My VFR proficiency -=> Gone; Even my logbook was "dusty")

But last month, I decided to get going! 

The first step before anything else was to get my medical in order.  Since I last flew, the FAA has created a simplified "Basic Med" that really is quite easy.  But that does not let you fly outside the US, which I will likely want to do.  So I found my local FAA doc and got the traditional 3rd class medical.

The next step was brushing up on all of the core aviation knowledge, which I thought I forgot.  With the help of the AOPA "Rusty Pilots" info, that got me started and I was surprised how quickly it all came back to me... Maybe it was like riding a bicycle ;-)

Now it was time to get down to business with some Cirrus specific training.  There was a bunch of online transition training material that I studied for a couple of weeks and then it was time to find an instructor and really get going.

I decided to reach out to one of my old instructors in Atlanta and scheduled an intensive long weekend to get current on everything at once!
About to jump into the SR22 G6 with my instructor Sherri
While the basics of flying all came back to me easily, the cockpit was totally different.  Over the past few years Cirrus has really upgraded the avionics dramatically in the SR22 G6.  You can see the new cockpit below.

The SR22 G6 Cockpit that I trained in

After the initial few seconds of terror, I started playing with the buttons on the ground with GPU connected.  They have added so much amazing capability into this cockpit it feels like a spaceship!

After a grueling weekend including lots of landings, approaches, etc I am now legal again!

Next step is to find a new bird of my own.  The tricky part will be to find right plane with Turbo, A/C and all of the cool new avionics toys ;-)

As soon as I have my new plane, I am hoping to start making some more videos and reviving my Youtube channel.

== T.J.==

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