Thursday, May 19, 2005

Dangit, I STILL wanna learn to fly!

Originally uploaded by iTripped.
My wife has only herself to blame.

You see, she has a healthy fear of me flying.
I guess that's reasonable, considering the motor coordination skills I have. But the simple fact is that I have wanted to fly for a long time. As it happens, there is a place close by that teaches pilot classes about 3 times a year. An added bonus to learning here is that I would also be mountain-rated.

The airplane pictured here is an example of the kit plane I would like to build and fly. It's made by Zenith Air. At one point I thought I wanted to fly a helicopter, but these little airplanes are way more practical. I don't know if it is the sense of accomplishment on being able to build something like this, the ability to explore places in a whole new way or some idealistic notion of being able to get away to pretty much anywhere that appeals to me. Maybe it's all of the above. All I know is that I'll be sure to learn on a Cessna 152 so that when I finally take to the air in one of these babies, I'll know how much of a hot rod I'm in by comparison.

Some stats: without floats, the XL tends to cruise at about 135 to 140 MPH, while getting about 20 to 30 MPG, depending on what engine is installed. Given the tank size, the typical range is about 450 to 500 miles. With floats installed, the range and cruise speed are reduced, but you can land in most any puddle of water.

That means I could fly from Vernon to Vancouver in about an hour and a half, with time to spare. Trips across the country become feasible, without the hassles of scheduling a flight through an airline. Yeah, one of these days, I'm seriously going to do this.


K.A said...

Listen to your wife. She's probably a smart woman.. besides, we both know you'd crash and burn first thing that happens, eh...? *ducks* ;-)

iTripped said...

I guess I didn't make myself clear - it was my wife who rekindled my desire to fly, and despite the fact that it makes her nervous, she is still very supportive. Of course, it still has to fit into our budget, so she has LOTS of time before I ever get into a small plane.