March 2002 Issue

Too Much, Too Soon

Rookie pilot with fresh instrument rating launches into potential ice at night with all the cards stacked against him

As much as it pains some people to admit it, light airplanes are seldom the kind of go-anywhere-anytime transportation tools most pilots would like them to be. Generally speaking, the smaller the airplane, the less capable it is to perform all-weather duty.

The limitations of flying light aircraft are such that weather can easily overwhelm any pilot who does not both recognize and accept the fact that sometimes the wheels ought to stay on the ground. While thatís a lesson instructors and examiners try to instill in every private and instrument applicant, sometimes the lesson comes too late to do the pilot much good.

The temptation to push the envelope of both airplane and pilot is stro...

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