Tuesday, December 3, 2013

I've been experimenting with a new blog via Github pages.   You can find it at http://dougtoppin.github.io/   I'm 50/50 on a permanent move to it at this point though so you may see it move again.

Tuesday, December 28, 2010

moving to a new single blog

I decided to keep a single blog that includes my aviation, technology and other topics at:  http://dougtoppin.com/blog/
Please drop in there and see what you think about it.

Thursday, September 16, 2010

Instrument training and longest XC yet

After finishing graduate school in Jun I resumed my instrument training (finally).  I did a few flights in a RedBird sim and then did an XC with my instructor recently.  We flew KJYO -> KECG (precision approach) -> KEDE (non-precision approach) -> KJYO (GPS approach).  I was under the hood most of the time and was much more tired than I expected when I got home.
I have a bad habit of not eating or drinking much before flying and I am pretty sure that 5-hours of flying dehydrated me.
On the return to KJYO we were hoping to get the COATT4 STAR which would have been a first for me. Unfortunately, KIAD got busy and had a commercial flight do a missed approach so we got vectored to the west and almost up to MRB before we were sent in.
In general the flight went well but from now on I am not under drinking/eating beforehand.  As usual, every flight is a learning experience one way or another.
I bought an iPad a few months ago and decided to try using it as an EFB for the XC.  I bought ForeFlight and have been very impressed with it.  It gathers and aggregates everything that you need to know for planning, filing and actually flying.   I recommend giving it a try if you have not seen it.  The only issue that I had with the iPad was that I did not have any way to attach it to my kneeboard so I fumbled with it whenever I wanted to use it.  I think I need a yoke holder for it or else some way to secure it to the panel next time.

Tuesday, June 15, 2010

Unmanned Aircraft Systems (UAS) and commercial aviation?

I wonder if recent developments in Unmanned Aircraft Systems (UAS) will eventually lead to single pilot cockpits in commercial flights.  I remember the controversy when the flight crews were reduced from 3 to 2. 

Thursday, June 10, 2010

FAA Safety seminar KJYO 10-Jun-2010 7pm "Deliberately Accepted Risk...Single Pilot's Guide to Resource Management"

FAA Safety seminar KJYO 10-Jun-2010 7pm "Deliberately Accepted Risk...Single Pilot's Guide to Resource Management"

Info at:

Monday, May 31, 2010

start flying again and am pretty rusty

I flew yesterday for the first time in months.  I missed a BFR in Jan and need to bone up to do it.  I flew with a new instructor and worked on basic procedures, slow flight, stalls, a little bit of an instrument approach along with a couple of other things.   I am more rusty than I realized so I need to hit the books and the sim again.  The weather was perfect though and it went ok in general.

Friday, May 14, 2010

graduate school done! time to start flying again

I finished my MS degree a little over a week ago and it is time to resume my instrument training.  I am going to start reviewing material with another pilot in the same boat probably this weekend.  We need to review the basics of navigation, comms procedures (essential for the DC SFRA), 172 check lists and so on.   Definitely looking forward it.  More to come later.