Quick Flight For Dinner . . . Or . . . The $300 Hamburger

John HurlbutFlying0 Comments

All over pilot blogs, forums, books, etc. there is mention of the $100 hamburger. The premise is that as pilots we will find any reason to fly, even if it’s just to fly across town to a neighboring airport for lunch and back. The airport I fly out of, Pierce County Thun Field (KPLU), has a restaurant and nearly every weekend I see pilots flying in for breakfast and flying out. So of course after getting my pilot’s license this is one of the things I wanted to do, grab a $100 hamburger.  However, I’ve pretty much realized that to get this $100 hamburger, the only way you’re going to do it is if the airport you fly out of happens to have a restaurant.  Because renting a plane at roughly $135.00/hour about the only way you’re going to keep the cost under $100 is to take off, do a … Read More

Achievement Unlocked! I AM a Pilot!

John HurlbutFlying, Personal Growth2 Comments

(Author’s Note: I originally started this post on May 11th, 2 days after I passed my check ride. Life got in the way and it took me a month to get it completed. I’ve got a few more posts coming! Sorry for the delay!)  Well it’s been over a month since my last post “Why I’m Not a Pilot Yet…Or What Went Wrong” so I guess I should catch everyone up. (Both of you) After failing to pass my check ride on March 27th, it took me a few days to get back in the airplane. There was a lot that lead up to that day and it was a HUGE emotional letdown knowing I hadn’t passed. I think my recounting of the events was pretty accurate as to what I did, what went wrong and what I could have done differently. The only question after that was “Do I … Read More

Putting it All Together…With Video!

John HurlbutFlying6 Comments

OK so I’m STILL waiting to schedule my check ride to get my private pilot’s license completed. I think I’ve officially psyched myself out. I know I know how to fly. I think I’m pretty good at following all the appropriate procedures and I know I’m a safe pilot. I just haven’t had time to study for the oral exam and my flight instructor and I haven’t been able to connect to really polish my maneuvers over the past month or so. So I’ve been trying to fly at least once per week. Last week I went out and practiced some maneuvers and did a flight from Thun Field to Tacoma Narrows, South to Lacey and out to Eatonville and back to Thun. To be honest, I didn’t really feel like I remembered how to fly that day. In fact, coming into Tacoma Narrows, I carrier trapped. Coming into Thun, … Read More

Crest and Boeing Solo + False Labor

John HurlbutFlying3 Comments

OK, so I’m an only child.  What’s that have to do with flying? Not much, other than the fact that when I want something, I want it right now. I feel I’m pretty darn close to being able to take my private pilot check ride. In other words, I feel I’m about ready to be a fully licensed private pilot with all the responsibilities and privileges that come with that title. So last week after my last flight lesson I looked at the weather for this upcoming week and realized that we’re gonna have a pretty amazing week here in the great Northwest! So I planned out the following schedule: Fly Solo Sunday (today).  Fly with instructor on Tuesday.  Mock Check ride with other instructor on Friday, REAL check ride on Saturday the 31st.  I asked my instructor to coordinate with the FAA designated flight examiner for next Saturday.  The … Read More

4.7 Hours Of Flying Logged today! Epic!

John HurlbutFlying2 Comments

Wow!  What an amazing day I had today flying!  I’ve been waiting to do my long Cross Country flight for a couple of weeks now due to weather.  Today the weather gods smiled upon me and I got an amazing amount of flying in. The plan for the day was to take off out of Puyallup (KPLU) Thun Field, cross over McChord AFB, hang a left at Anderson Island, overfly Olympia (KOLM), overfly Centralia/Chehalis (KCLS), hang a right over Kelso (KKLS) and follow the Columbia River to Astoria, Oregon (KAST).  After landing at Astoria, I would stretch my legs, then hop back in the plane for a trip to Hoquiam, land there, stretch my legs and finally head  back to Pierce County, Thun Field skirting around the Rainier Military Operations Area (MOA) to the South, overflying Eatonville airport on the way. My flight was scheduled for 12:00PM and I had … Read More

Workin’ On Our Night Moves…

John HurlbutFlying3 Comments

Tryin’ to make some front page flyin’ news… Some of you will get that, all the rest of you Google “Bob Seger, Night Moves”.  I got to fly at night tonight! That makes four days in a row flying!  I think it’s time to take a couple days off.  As I’m headed to Vegas this weekend, it may not be until next week that I get to fly again, but the last week has been an absolute blast!  I flew 5 of 7 days, I only wish I could keep this pace up!  But most of what I have left to do are cross country flights, which take a significant amount of time, both to plan and execute.  So I don’t think my pace will be nearly as frenzied going forward. All day today I was looking forward to tonight.  Nervous anticipation to be sure!  My instructor was teaching ground … Read More

Really REALLY Solo!

John HurlbutFlying1 Comment

So as I mentioned, I soloed on August 21st!  And yes, that means I flew a plane ALL BY MYSELF! I’m still surprised by the number of people that still think that soloing means that your instructor is in the plane, but just doesn’t do anything.  Nope, it’s just you and the airplane all alone.  It’s a feeling I’ll never forget and it’s pretty darn incredible!  But after you solo, you’re only about half way through flight training.  There’s still a lot to do and you’re not only on your own after that.  My last blog post was about my breakthrough.  Finally getting my landings down to the point where my instructor is confident enough in me to let me go to the airport and just rent the plane and go flying.  Do you remember when you first got your drivers license and you were free to just go anywhere … Read More