I've been ill the last couple weeks, so I'm going to include two flights in one quick post. On 10/20 I went up with my CFI to knock out the .7 hours of hood work, starting with another instrument takeoff. While in the air we also worked on stalls and slow flight - the first time I had worked on either in a year I believe. I also got in 2 more night landings, and I exceeded the requirement for simulated instrument, getting an additional 1.1 hours in under the hood.
On 11/3 I got to the field as early as possible, around 16:45 local, and went up to do some solo work, practicing S-turns, rectangular courses and turns around a point. The weekend prior was the end of daylight savings time, which meant the sun was setting an hour earlier. I didn't have much sunlight left at all once I got in the air. I quickly climbed out and made for the practice area to find a tree, a road, and then later a field to fly around.
I had a good amount of wind, which forced me to remember the correct points at which to shallow and steepen my turns. Rectangular courses came easily. My S-turns really need work though. I know it had been over a year since I'd practiced them, and it showed. I didn't spend too much time on them though. I was running out of daylight and had to get some rectangular course practice in. I found a field and did 2 laps around in each direction. I started to do a third to the right, but looked ad the sun just a few degrees above the horizon, the length of the shadows and the houses that in some cases were already completely covered with shadow, and decided to head back to the field.
I made it back just in time, but for safety I went ahead and activated the runway lights. Not my best landing, but then again at this point that's probably going to be the case for most of them until I get some practice in again.
All in all, I logged another 0.9 solo time, leaving just 1.9 hours of solo flight to complete all of my flight requirements before my checkride. The plan after this lesson was to do a quick solo cross-country to KCUL on Monday 11/9 to finish that up, followed by 1 or 2 flights with my CFI to polish up maneuvers and precision landings.
Details on that flight, which didn't happen on 11/9, in the next post
Two Victor Uniform, clear of Two-Seven.