10-Day IFR Training / In My Bonanza


Here is how I would sum up my experience with AFIT……… Transformation of Navigation/Instrument skills in 10 days:

When I arrived VFR from Texas and began decent into the Oxnard (KXOR)area for my IFR training, I was vectored south of the Camarillo (KCMA) airport and then mistakenly lined up on what I thought was the Oxnard airport to the west…… well, it turns out it was the Point Magu Naval Air Station (KNTD) I was lined up on and quickly instructed to expedite a 180 degree turn and head toward the Financial Plaza  to enter the pattern for Oxnard.  When I met my instructor John the next morning I told him this story and that I thought we had a lot of work to do, and we did.  Slowly but surely, John tested and refined my flying and navigation skills to a point where I could began to integrate the concepts of instrument flying with he systems in my Bonanza.  We flew every morning and every afternoon shooting approaches in some very busy airspace followed by a through debrief of weaknesses and strengths (which usually led to homework).

Fast forward to my return trip back home to Texas (with my instrument rating) with my wife onboard, I descended confidently through 4,500 ft of clouds and broke out 900 ft above the ground lined up perfectly on the RNAV 15 approach Into T82.  Nailed it.

While I have a lot yet to learn about instrument flying, the attention and challenge I received during the training was priceless.  When we weren’t flying, my instructor John was peppering me with questions to prepare me for the oral, which helped me focus on the areas where I was weak.  The oral went great.

To close, I feel the intensity, repetition, and frequency provided by this training provided me a solid base to build from and along the way I developed a friendship that will last forever; John and I hold a similar passion for flying and I’m sure we’ll fly together again.

Worth every penny.

Richard Morrison