Thursday, May 30, 2013

Exploring Texas - Getting Checked Out

Spent several years before I had a pilots license traveling around Europe, Japan and the US on business. During my spare time on the trips, I tried to keep the weekends aviation theme based, for example, visiting a museum or an airport for some spotting. But now being a Private Pilot, I can get checked out for a rental. This is what I did on a recent trip to Austin, Texas. 

I had some great plans to fly over the one weekend. However, low visibility and wind ruined my flying plans. However I did get to fly twice. A little bit of research and a visit to KAUS, I came across a couple of rental options. Ended up going with Above & Beyond Aviation based out of Atlantic Aviation on the east side of KAUS. After finishing work at 4pm, I ran over to the airport to meet the CFI that the owner has assigned to me. Flew 1.3hrs in SKYHAWK 733CP which was a C172N. Not the prettiest on the outside but flew lovely. Great value at $99 an hour wet!

KAUS Airspace (
Prior to the flight, I hadn't spent much time studying the Texas sectional. I soon  realized why most of the runways were orientated North/South in Texas. Wind was almost always 17014G20!

Flew to Lockhart which is 20nm south of KAUS. There we did 2 touch and goes followed by some stalls and steep turns. KAUS airport lies within class charlie airspace. One of the fun parts of charlie airports is getting radar vectors from ATC. I had already experienced this heading into KTUS back in Arizona. I was inbound back to the airport at around 18:00L. ATC were very busy with inbounds for 17L and 17R. I received about 5 heading changes from ATC and was cleared for a "high speed" approach to a left base 17L. I landed behind a C152 and in front of a Challenger jet. After landing, I received praise from the CFI. He signed my logbook and I was approved for rentals over the weekend.

One regret. I didn't record anything on the GoPro and MP3 recorder. Could only find about 5 seconds of audio on  due to all the frequencies being very busy. 


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