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SOLO!

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Well the big day finally came yesterday. Went up at Hamilton (Ontario, Canada/CYHM). Was flown in a PA28-140. Before the flight my instructor mentioned that this may be the big day if I handle the wind and everything else correctly. Also gave me my student pilot permit for me to sign and keep a copy of. Weather was:CYHM 232000Z 24013KT 15SM SCT023 OVC083 01/M02 A2986 RMK SC3AC5 SLP123Runway in use was 24, and the magnetic wind was 250 at 13. Ran through the checklist, taxi out passing some Westjet planes and cautiously proceeding through the sanded areas of the runway. Runup complete, we took off. We did three touch and goes and one full stop altogether. A C152 from another flying club in YHM was ahead of us and was making extremely wide circuits, so we had to follow them as far as ATC was concerned, making for some long circuits. They were so far out that if they had an engine failure there's no way they would have ever made the runway. Landings were good, but I didn't land slow enough, I landed at about 50kts while stall is around 40, we aim for that. Second time around we had lots of traffic including a transienting helicopter, and I made my biggest mistake that day, forgetting to do the pre-landing checks. (oops! :-)) Noticed it first off all when the fuel pump was already off in the climb out. Finally made a full stop, with my instuctor asking ATC if he could be dropped off and that I was going on my first solo.Landed uneventfully, and he just told me to be cautious when I went out and exited the plane. Got the ATIS and called for taxi. Turns out that C152 was also going for their solo, and they called for taxi too, and ATC was asking them if they had the ATIS, they replied no. ATC got them to taxi out in front of me, and believe it or not, they did NO runup!! Odd. Takeoff seemed a little quicker, and climb as well. Had to follow a company PA28, they also made their cicuits very wide, and ATC once again told me to follow them. :-8 Really cool thing was a Westjet 737 coming in for landing on 30R, passing a few miles off my right wing, it's landing lights shining brightly. Turbulence seemed to have more of an effect as there was less weight for stability in the plane. Due to a few WJA departures and arrivals, we had to extend almost out to Lake Ontario, and then the PA28 flew about the 5 mile final at around 70 kts! That took quite some time, I had to slow up a lot. They made one bad landing, weaving around hardly staying on centerline and coming down with a bang it looked like. They did their touch and go and about 20secs before landing I got my landing clearance. Flare seemed very light, and I painted it on, but a gust of wind just lifted me a few feet off again, before I made full, soft contact with the ground. Rolled it to the end, ATC congratulated me on my first solo, and said I did very well. :( Only one full stop solo though, no idea why but the school does it that way.Got off the runway, taxiied back to the apron, did a smart 180 turn for parking, and got out after I shut everything down. My instructor was right there, with the camera waiting. :-) Got a few pics, talked a bit, even got a certificate! I was his first student to solo, having only been instructing for a few months. The plane I soloed in, C-GXFR, was also the first plane I flew with him after changing instructors. Lucky it was cold, no water dumped on me! :DMight have the pics in about a week, have to get developed.Thanks for reading,

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Congratulations to both you and your instructor.I'm seriously contemplating starting lessons, right now all that's stopping me is the pricetag of (at least here, I asked at all fields in reasonable distance) around

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CONGRATULATIONS!!! I did my first solo yesterday (read a complete report at www.rhodesyell.com/fly/)!!15000 for a PPL??? Where are you living?

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Thanks! :-) LH, read your post, very nice too, congrats to you as well. :-beerchug I think Mr. Wenting is in Belgium, I have read that they have very high flight training costs.Cheers,

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Netherlands. I know it's a lot more than in the US, but as I get pretty much the same price whereever I ask around here it's not just a few schools trying to make money by overcharging students.

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