First CAP Solo Flight Story
Flying the CAP (Civil Air Patrol) Cessna 206, that I blogged a picture of previously, has a good first time story about it. I was flying a short leg from Modesto, CA (KMOD) to Stockton, CA (KSCK) I was a little anxious and felt like a little kid in the Cereal Isle. But I kept my head together and stay focused. I checked the weather before I left and winds were 8 knots gusting up to 12. The Cessna 206 can land in 17 Knots so I was fine but I just had to stay on my toes on Final. I departed modesto with no problem and headed towards Stockton. I came closer to the airport in Stockton “Stockton Tower CAP 545 is 10 miles to the Southeast inbound for runway two nine left.” I was cleared to land and was on final facing the runway. But something wasn’t right, I was using more rudder than I should’ve been using, I continued the descent and as i got close to the runway I began to yaw out of the crab. But I was at full left rudder and I was still coming in at an angle. Fearing a rudder malfunction I aborted the landing and decided to head back to Modesto and trouble shoot the rudder. It seemed to be working fine, I was dumbfounded. I landed back in Modesto with no problem and taxied back to park. On top of that the Hobbes had failed.
I stuck near the plane because I had a mechanic coming out to inspect the rudder for me before I decided to take it up again, just in case. But before the mechanic arrived I found out that the winds in Stockton during my landing gusted up to 22 Knots! BEYOND the limits of my 206. I could’ve landed but it could’ve had deadly consequences in a plane I didn’t own! So I called off the Mechanic and when about the day. Moral of the story, if you ever doubt the safety of the aircraft during landing abort the landing until you can determine what’s wrong! You could be fooled in the end!