2 Years

Two years ago, I woke up on a bright September morning. Not knowing that the events that day would change my life. At about 9:30 I climbed into a Cessna 172 for the first time. It was my first Young Eagles flight and I was over-joyous. I asked as many questions to  the pilot, Curt, as I could on our short flight. When it was over, I wanted more. 2 years, and more than 100 hours of flight time, later I still look back on that day. If it weren’t for the support of Young Eagles, my family, my boss, my friends, and most of all God, I would not be where I am today.

 

“When once you have tasted flight, you will forever walk the earth with your eyes turned skyward, for there you have been, and there you will always long to return” – Leonardo da Vinci

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Major Milestone

This past weekend I embarked on my private pilot check-ride. Thoughts of joy and anxiety were overwhelming. Nearly a year and a half of hard work, learning, and perseverance were about to pay off. I flew down to Champaign and met with the examiner. We went over my logbook, written, and other various forms. Then began the oral portion of the exam. I was nervous throughout the duration and was relieved to her the words “Lets go fly”.

We soon embarked on the flight, or practical, portion. We took off, and departed on the cross country I planned. Soon after we diverted, displaying turns, slow flight, stalls, and navigation skills. We went to K96 for our short/soft field procedures I completed both satisfactorily. As we were returning to the airport, many thoughts ran through my head. Mainly: Thats it? It was over, I completed every task and maneuver. I did it, I am now a private pilot as of 4/27/13. About a year and a half after my first flight on 11/17/13.

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Major Milestone

This past weekend I embarked on my private pilot check-ride. Thoughts of joy and anxiety were overwhelming. Nearly a year and a half of hard work, learning, and perseverance were about to pay off. I flew down to Champaign and met with the examiner. We went over my logbook, written, and other various forms. Then began the oral portion of the exam. I was nervous throughout the duration and was relieved to her the words “Lets go fly”.

We soon embarked on the flight, or practical, portion. We took off, and departed on the cross country I planned. Soon after we diverted, displaying turns, slow flight, stalls, and navigation skills. We went to K96 for our short/soft field procedures I completed both satisfactorily. As we were returning to the airport, many thoughts ran through my head. Mainly: Thats it? It was over, I completed every task and maneuver. I did it, I am now a private pilot as of 4/27/13. About a year and a half after my first flight on 11/17/13.

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One Year!

In one year a mind can observe, learn, and benefit. All of which I have done in the past year at my wonderful job, at the airport.  I primarily serve as an Administrative Assistant and Flight Line Operator. My job has allowed my to meet incredible people and learn from others mistakes and experience. During the summer I am surrounded by those who have my dream job. They provide wise insight into my future career and goals. My bosses provide insight and assistance throughout my pursuit of my dream. My job has provided me opportunities to see many unique aircraft, Falcon 50 and Citation X for example. I am surrounded by my dream aircraft, Air Tractor 802, and am able to see it in action on a regular basis. It truly is incredible how influential my job has been to my life. I honestly cannot summarize how much I love and enjoy my job.

 

“Your work is going to fill a large part of your life, and the only way to be truly satisfied is to do what you believe is great work. And the only way to do great work is to love what you do.” ~Steve Jobs (1955-2011)

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Winter Wonderland!

Recently I had anxiously awaited the Warrior I fly to have it’s annual completed and for the weather to cooperate. This past Thursday, that day came. Not only was I joyed to be flying for the first time in nearly a month, but for the first time since I began flying there was snow on the ground!

Winter Wonderland

Those who know me personally know that I absolutely love snow, when I checked the weather upon waking up I was delighted to see it was a perfect day.  I logged three landings total, 2 of which were by far my best landings I’ve performed so far. Though one week later I bested those two.

As near my written and flight/oral exams I am fairly excited, but also pretty nervous. I plan to be over-prepared for both and have set high standards for myself. Most of my solo flight time now is dedicated to the practice area and traffic pattern.

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What is it like?

I’m often asked, why do you like flying so much. Or more often: What’s it like? The feeling of pure joy and excitement is much like trying to explain what bubble gum tastes like. There is no way to put the feeling to text. From the feeling of freedom when the wheels leave the ground. To seeing your destination on the horizon. To the pure adrenaline of landing.

The ability to see the world from a brand new perspective can be breathtaking and leave you awestruck. From the back country where all you see can is:

“Just a bunch of square cornfields and wheat farms,
Man, it all looks the same,
Miles and miles of back roads and highways,
Connecting little towns with funny names”
- Fly Over States, Jason Aldean

To the bustling city with sky scrapers piercing the sky. From the perspective in the air you can truly see the architecture marvels of our modern day. Flying is a relaxing and even life changing experience.

What are your thoughts? How would you explain flying?

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New Year, New Experiences

We’re now one month into 2013 and time is flying by! I have only been able to fly 4 times this month and each flight I’ve learned new things, saw new sights, and become a better pilot because of it! This month I shot my first Localizer approach. It was a great night for a flight and the full moon lit up the ground. As we got closer and closer to Bloomington (KBMI) things got more stressful and in the end I was both happy and relieved. This past month I also had a chance to go up in a Cherokee 235.

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Going The Distance

Yesterday I embarked on my first Solo Long Cross Country. Flying nearly 270 nautical miles (More than 300 miles!) and landing at 4 airports it was my longest flight yet. I logged a total of 3.7 hours in one flight. It was scenic, relaxing, stressful, and rewarding. I am super close to my pilots license. Realistically the only thing holding me back from my exam is money. I know that God will provide and help me through that minor issue. Flying every day becomes more of a passion for me. Eventually it will become a career.

Nuclear Plant (Near Rockford)

Nuclear Plant (Near Rockford)

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Progress

This past week I surpassed 40 hours! I am preparing to do my long solo cross country this week. I am planning on going to Rockford (KRFD), Quad Cities (KMLI), Peoria (KPIA), and back home. Its amazing how fast this has flown by (Pun intended). It seems like yesterday I was going on my first flight. Over a year has passed and I am on my way. My plan is to continue climbing to my Commercial Pilot License. Once there I play to move to either Airlines or Aerial Application.

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Website Updates

To all my readers, recently I switched my hosting provider to GoDaddy. In the process a file was corrupted causing any page, with the exception of the blog, to become a broken link. This is now fixed, thank you for your patience.

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