When the weather’s bad enough to call it IFR, VFR-only pilots are grounded. Except when they’re not.
The day’s mission was to re-familiarize with a long-trustworthy companion, a Cessna 172 owned by close friends, in which I had hundreds of hours flying throughout the eastern U.S. It had been a couple of years, though, since I’d flown it and the ultimate mission was to ferry a co-owner and the airplane from the Mid-Atlantic to Las Vegas. We were planning to depart the next day, but I wanted to check out the airplane before launching.
It was based at a tower-controlled airport reporting two miles visibility in haze and 2,500 scattered. With only two miles’ visibility in Class D airspace, the field was IFR. Of course, we needed three miles just to stay in the pattern and shoot some landings under VFR. [Read more…]