Trial Experience Flight In Ikarus C42
The day of my trial experience flight finally arrived and I couldn’t wait to get back in the air after such a long break. The last time I was at the controls of an aeroplane was way back in 1998 in Tasmania, when I took my dad up for a flight in a Cessna 172. Ever since then I’ve yearned for the sky and as I pulled into Deanland Airfiled in East Sussex, I felt I was finally returning home.
Weather conditions weren’t that great with wind gusting at 25-30 knots. Richard Foster, my flying instructor, decided to delay our departure time by around an hour, as the wind was due to abate. I hoped it would as every fibre of my being needed to go up that day.
I told Richard about my previous flying experience – that I have a lapsed Australian CPL with around 70 PIC and I was pleased to discover that this experience will count towards obtaining my NPPL (m).
We walked out to the little Ikarus C42 for some cockpit familiarisation. The wind was still rather gusty, but Richard made the decision to go anyway. I think he was more concerned about me being put off, going up on such a windy day, but nothing could’ve been further from the truth.
Richard started up the C42’s Rotax 912 engine and we taxied to the runway strip where he talked me through the pre-take off checks – hatches and harnesses SECURE, mags CHECK. Trim SET FOR TAKE OFF…ahhh music to my ears! After a final radio call to broadcast our departure we were up in the air after a surprisingly short take off run.
Flying the Ikarus C 42
My trial flight lasted around 45 minutes and shortly after take- off I had control. The little aircraft had supreme handling and felt more than capable of coping with the gusts coming off the surrounding hills. I did several straight and level turns before Richard took control and performed what I think was a spin. Seeing the Sussex Downs from sphincter clenching angles 2000 ft above the ground didn’t seem to phase me as much as I thought it would as I felt pilot and aircraft were more than capable of handling it. All it did was wet my appetite for more which unfortunately wasn’t satiated as it was time to return to Mother Earth.
…just an Earth bound misfit, I
Since my flight 2 days ago now, I’ve found it difficult to keep grounded. It has re-awakened a childhood fascination with all things aviation which has to be nurtured. There is no rhyme or reason for my love of flying but it has always been there throughout all times in my life. Fate has conspired to give me another shot at it and I’m not going to pass up on this opportunity. I have therefore booked another 10 lessons which I hope will edge me nearer to recapturing the love I once lost.