First Real Flight Lesson (13 May, 2009)

So here it is, Wednesday 13th May, 2009. This is my first real flying lesson. I’m nervous but excited and looking forward to it. A proper lesson, not just a Fam Flight like the previous one. I’ll be doing more, learning more (and of course, paying more.)

We take off from Toronto city, my instructor is doing the radio work still at this point. Off we go, headed eastbound towards Pickering. We follow the coast pretty much on the way, over Bluffers Park in Scarborough and out of the City Centre control zone. Continue east until we reach Frenchman’s Bay which is just to the west of Pickering nuclear power station (a fairly obvious landmark.) From there we turn north towards the town of Claremont which is located north of the 407 for those who know the area.

The area around Claremont is the general aviation practice area for most of the flight schools in the nearby vicinity. Flying from Buttonville, Markham, Toronto City Centre and some others. It is an open area, full of farmland and some woods with some small villages scattered around the landscape. Very pretty area, and surprisingly unpopulated for being so close to Toronto. Seems to the east is nice and undeveloped, to the west is more built up.

So off into the practice area, it’s a beautiful day, clear skies and plenty to see. I don’t do much sightseeing however as we’re practicing turns, climbs and descents and just generally trying to get a feel for the aircraft. It still seems to strange, here I am in control of a relatively expensive piece of equipment, 3,000 feet above the ground. Looking out for the occasional other plane in the area, but other than that it seems the world is free and yours to explore. It’s so exhilarating.

Before too long though it’s back to the barn, headed back to Toronto City and a landing. While I had my hands on the controls and was trying to follow what was going on, it’s the instructor who obviously performs the landing. However she talks me through what is happening, asks me to make some corrections and explains every step. It’ll be some time before I’m doing landings myself (at time of writing it’s still not 100% me), but the time will come soon enough.

Time: 1.1 hours of flight time.

Costs: 1.1 hours of plane hire, $167.88. 1.4 hours of instructor time (0.3 hours of ground briefing before the flight,) $84. Including GST the total comes to $264.47.

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