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9 Flying Experiences for Pilots Should Have

experiences for pilots

Get incredible insight into what it’s like to operate a plane as a private pilot to get the experiences for pilots.

You’ll be totally immersed in every step of the flight planning experience, from deciding a route, inspecting and preparing the aircraft for flight, and then taking to the skies!

There are some experiences for pilots who should never miss out on. Here are a few things to check off on your pilot bucket list.

(Remember to ALWAYS fly with a flight instructor if you are not properly licensed, rated, trained, or comfortable with a flight activity!)

1) Aerobatic Flying

Aerobatics is the practice of flying maneuvers involving aircraft attitudes that not used in normal flights.

They perform in airplanes and gliders for training, recreation, entertainment, and sport.

A straight-and-level flight is nice, but seeing the world upside-down is unforgettable.

experiences for pilots

2) Complex Aircraft

A complex airplane is an airplane that has retractable landing gear, flaps, and a controllable pitch propeller.

While you may never need a complex aircraft rating, it’s a worthwhile experience nonetheless.

Find a local instructor to try it out. But please, don’t forget to lower the landing gear!

experiences for pilots

3) Gliding

A glider is a fixed-wing aircraft that is supported in flight by the dynamic reaction of the air against its lifting surfaces, and whose free flight does not depend on an engine.

Flying without an engine is not only peaceful and quiet, gliding teaches you some excellent flying skills.

You’ll learn about using thermals and air currents to your advantage.

experiences for pilots

4) Tailwheel Aircraft

Aircraft with a tailwheel or “conventional” landing gear layout has two main wheels placed forward of the airplane’s center of gravity with a smaller wheel or a skid supporting the tail of the airplane.

A majority of newly minted pilots have never trained on tailwheel aircraft.

Not only are they fun, but they’ll improve your rudder and overall aircraft handling skills.

experiences for pilots

5) IMC (Instrument Meteorological Conditions)

In aviation, instrument meteorological conditions (IMC) is a flight category that describes weather conditions that require pilots to fly primarily by reference to instruments.

And therefore under instrument flight rules (IFR), rather than by outside visual references under visual flight rules (VFR).

We’re not just talking about “hood time,” this is the real deal. Flying into IMC is the greatest cause of death for private pilots.

Try an IMC flight with an instrument instructor to see why getting your instrument rating is TOTALLY worth it.

experiences for pilots

6) Oxygen Use

You’ll be getting pretty close to the flight levels if you’re using oxygen.

Having an oxygen-required flight is a must for any pilot who wants to fly where the air is thin.

Most pilots don’t think too much about using portable oxygen as one of the main experiences for pilots.

And that at cabin altitudes above 14,000 feet pilots must use oxygen at all times.

That above 15,000 feet each occupant of the aircraft must provid supplemental oxygen.

experiences for pilots

7) Class B Airport

Designing Class B airspace areas to improve aviation safety by reducing the risk of midair collisions in the airspace surrounding airports with high-density air traffic operations.

Are your radio skills ready for a Class B airport?

Flying a light aircraft into the pattern with dozens of commercial airliners isn’t easy, but it sure makes you feel like the captain of your aircraft.

experiences for pilots

8) Seaplanes

A seaplane is a powered fixed-wing aircraft capable of taking off and landing (alighting) on water.

Sure, we love airports, but sometimes it’s just more fun to land somewhere a little less crowded.

Who’s ready for a beach trip (one of the adventure experiences for pilots)?

experiences for pilots

9) Mountain Flying

Consider planning mountain flying VFR flight in mountain areas following the contours of the earth at altitudes below the height of the surrounding peaks.

It’s as challenging as it is beautiful.

Make sure you’re experienced and comfortable before a flight into and over mountains.

Oh yeah… And don’t forget to enjoy those views!

experiences for pilots