I love to fly. But before you follow any of these links, let me warn
you -- flying is an addiction. Not everyone is susceptible, but if
you are, once you start flying, you will find it hard to stop.
One of the things I love about flying, besides the physical sensation
of flight, is that there is always something new to learn, and pilots
love to help each other learn, whether by explaining something that is
hard to understand or by telling a flying story. And there is such
a wide variety of skills to learn -- some physical skills, like
coordinated flight (much like learning to ride a bike), and some
intellectual skills, like navigation and procedures.
I am also an airplane owner. My first airplane is Pulsar XP N456LT,
a "homebuilt" (an "experimental amateur-built") airplane built
from a kit by a wonderfully careful builder,
However, the Pulsar is a two-seat airplane and I now have a
four-seat family. I'll be selling N456LT soon (sniff!)
and I have purchased a Lance II; a six-seat aircraft that is
comfortable for longer journeys and fully equipped for instrument
flight. I earned my instrument rating in N2154E on February 2, 2004..
Here are a few links:
The Wings of Carolina Flying Club
I used to fly with the Chapel Hill Flying Club, which changed its name
to The Wings of Carolina Flying Club when it moved to the
Sanford-Lee County Airport. If you are participating in
an addiction, you want other supportive folks around to talk to, folks
who know how to talk flying, folks with something new to teach and
learn all the time.
A useful advertiser-supported web-based flying magazine. Lots of
good articles available on-line, and only a free subscription
required to read them. Absolutely worth your while if you care
at all about flying.
Aircraft Owners and Pilots Association
If you are a pilot, or even thinking about becoming a pilot, this is
the organization to join. The dues are not at all exorbitant, and
AOPA does a lot for your dollar. If for nothing else, their free
aviation weather text and graphics is worth the whole dues. So is
the subscription to AOPA Pilot. So is the lobbying they do at every
level from municipal to federal. So is their Air Safety Foundation.
Experimental Aircraft Association
The EAA promotes many forms of experimental aviation, including building
and flying your own planes. It does so by lobbying for appropriate
laws and regulations (and against inappropriate ones) and by holding
many airshows, including one of the best in the world, the "EAA AirVenture"
show at Oshkosh, Wisconsin, every summer.
VFR flight planning software for Linux and Unix.
A Java applet to help you prepare for the FAA knowledge test for
private or instrument flying. You need to have a copy of the
figures from a booklet such as the ASA or Gleim test prep books
for this to be maximally useful.
I wouldn't want to forget a few more pictures:
Me taxiing out in 456LT for the flight home from LNA (Lantana, Florida)
to RDU (Raleigh-Durham, North Carolina)
Me taking off in 456LT for the flight home.
A couple seconds later...
Me doing my usual cautious pre-flight inspection of 8330S before
taking a trip to SUT (Southport, North Carolina) with my wife and
a family friend. 8330S is a PA28-161, a Piper Cherokee Warrior II,
or "Warrior" for short.
Another Warrior after a short morning flight.
A few of the other airplanes at the local airport.