October 15, 2004

Return Of The Death Grip, Part 27

A leisurely hour or so practicing DME arcs, holds, and approaches with the GPS 530 in 4JG over the Diablo Valley. A tiny bit of actual on the approach back to Oakland, a very busy-sounding NorCal approach, and a rapid-fire practice clearance from John that read something like "N234JG cleared to the Diablo practice area, runway heading, then right turn heading 360, then vectors for the Oakland 030 radial, then a 9 DME arc to the Oakland 060 radial, then hold east of SALAD intersection on the Oakland 060 radial. Climb and maintain 2,500 feet, expect 3,700 after 10 minutes. Departure on 120.9, squawk 4567". I don't miss a beat. I guess I'm getting better at copying clearances like this...

The only notable thing this evening was the usual Return Of The Death Grip -- but also a noticeable improvement when I remembered to just use the old light touch (remembering things like this is getting easier, which I hope is a sign that I'm internalising a lot of the flying I used to have to concentrate on consciously nearly all the time...). Pretty much everything else was routine, with the occasional exception of busting altitude by a few feet during the hold while trying to dial in a new flight plan on the GPS and simultaneously get Oakland's ATIS. Practice, practice, practice...

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John got his ATP last week in Sacramento after what sounds like a grueling four day finisher course culminating in an intense checkride. Cool!

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