The helping wings red and dark blue logo, with a wing at the end

Helping Wings Flying Scholarship Flight VII - Chakotay Wood

On Friday it was time for me to reach for the skies once more, surrounded by what could be described as a Mediterranean setting. With a tropical backdrop filling the sky with several shades of blue, silky soft and puffy white clouds scattered across the island of Jersey at just over a thousand feet. However in contrast the view from the ground varied completely, it appeared very overcast with the same old slogan: Business as usual. In my opinion I think it is safe to say that the true weather conditions can be very deceitful on the eye.

Once we were airborne we were soon presented with this Mediterranean paradise, however this backdrop came with a price of moderate wind conditions. While the coastline was reflecting the sun’s rays onto the sea which connects coastlines across the globe, I was facing some of the largest air pockets I’ve ever flown through. Despite the fact that the weather was clearing, the aircraft wasn’t in a position to fly by itself like on calm days. Even though I was facing more workload due to the wind conditions, it is one main reason why the Island of Jersey is one of the best locations to learn how to fly. With variable weather conditions I find myself flying into the unknown as the weather is always different. This allows pilots to learn the full capabilities of their aircraft and different configurations required under different scenarios and weather conditions. Despite the fact that I found myself making moderate changes throughout the flight with the aircraft’s control surfaces, I do aim to challenge myself with different scenarios and weather conditions to improve my flying abilities. It must be noted that any activity that somebody undertakes will have an element of risk, therefore there is a fine line between whats challengingly acceptable and the overall risk factor that comes with flying. Conditions today stayed within the safe operational limits of the aircraft in question. The landing was the most difficult stage of any flight but today it was my biggest challenge because the wind was throwing the aircraft here, there and everywhere.

It wasn’t impossible and although this is only be second time up this year, I’m pleased to find that I hadn’t become too rusty but no pilot should adopt a complacent approach. We completed two circuits to the South with a brief holding point due to approaching traffic. Which doesn’t come as a surprise to me because the summer season is well underway with a busy summer timetable when Jersey airport welcomes many airlines who offer a seasonal service and many private and general aircraft visit Jersey because not only is it a lovely holiday destination but is loved as a stop off point for many pilots who love flying in the region. Finally we embarked on a North bound circuit before returning back to the club. An expedited exit of the runway due to a departing ATR waiting to go and before I knew it we were parked up and once again another amazing experience and the plane once again never failed to impress. My scholarship is starting to approach the latter stages however the latest scholarship is about to embark on his journey and I wish him all the best and I’m almost certain his experience will be just as amazing as mine. Once again I’m back on the ground but you’ll see me back in the skies very soon.

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