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KAGC-KFWQ-KAGC: Another 1.4 hours to my logbook

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  • KAGC-KFWQ-KAGC: Another 1.4 hours to my logbook

    Today I had the pleasure of adding another 1.4 hours to my logbook. I had an appointment with my flight instructor at 14:00 local, so I showed up at Allegheny County Airport (KAGC) almost right on the dot. He met me outside the gates and took me past the security checkpoint. We covered a little ground review and then I preflighted the plane (a beautiful C172). All set! A small nick on the leading edge of the prop that is approaching acceptable limits, but ok for now. My CFI decides to take on a little extra fuel, so I recheck for containments.

    Time to go! Plan is all set, aircraft released for flight activities by the organization, etc; we're ready to roll! We get in the ship and adjust seats, close doors. It's a different ship than the one I usually fly, fuel injected and a slightly different startup procedure, so my instructor walks me through it. I crank the prop, she roars to life! I close my window and put on my headset. I turn the avionics switch on and we can finally hear each other talk again. Everything looks good! But wait, I tune ATIS and get information Bravo. Now we're ready! I press the transmit:
    "Allegheny Ground, CAP Flight 3XXX"
    "CAP Flight 3XXX, go ahead."
    "Allegheny Ground, CAP Flight 3XXX is a Cessna 172 at CAP hanger requesting taxi VFR departure to the South with Bravo"
    "CAP Flight 3XXX, taxi to and hold short of Runway 28."
    "Taxi to and hold short Runway 28, CAP Flight 3XXX"
    I advance the throttle slightly and swing on to the taxiway. After a short taxi, we reach the hold short line and do our runup. All good! Ready to go!
    "Allegheny Tower, CAP Flight 3XXX ready to go Runway 28."
    "CAP Flight 3XXX, cleared for takeoff."
    "Cleared for take off, 3XXX"
    I take the plane on to the runway and advance the throttle. We're rolling! There ain't no stopping us now! 55 knots, Rotate! And we're off! We climb to 3,500 feet ASL and I start to execute a turn to the South.
    "CAP Flight 3XXX, you're heading Northbound, correct?"
    "Southbound, 3XXX"
    "Ok, southbound"
    We head in the general direction of KFWQ (Rostraver Airport) observing all VFR procedures. Along the way, we perform steep banking turns, a topic I need much practice on. The high gees I produce trying to keep altitude while flying are kind of fun. Then we try some slow flight and a few poweroff stalls. Soon, we make for KFWQ and enter the uncontrolled pattern. We go though the pattern procedures. We enter final for touch and go. VASI shows me right on the glide slope. Its been awhile since I've done and landings, so my CFI inputs a little. Level, nose up, a little more! Touchdown! Smooth as a baby's bottom! Flaps up, throttle advanced forward, rotate! We are in the air again. We fly the pattern a few more times and then itís back to KAGC. That landing is a little rough and we are hurried off Runway 28 for another plane behind us.
    I taxi to the hanger and we go through the shutdown checklist. The ship's engine sputters to a stop.
    What a flight! My CFI does my logbook, we shake hands and finalize the next appointment. Good to go! And I go home with the promise of reaching the sky and my dreams again. Yet another small step of my journey towards the stars has been completed. Au Revoir, fair sky! See you soon!
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