AOPA Pilot Magazine - August 2021 - 81

- 85,000 blades in service
GET A SEAPL ANE RATING, add a multiengine
rating, try a glider. There are dozens
of ways to experience aviation anew, but
one stands above as the ultimate combination
of fun and utility. This is an argument
for learning to fly helicopters.
Aviation is a series of intermeshing layers,
each different. Being in one community
gives you access to one layer, and each time
you learn something new, a different layer
is peeled away and another community
revealed. Sometimes these communities
come together, like at an airport on a busy
weekend, or at a fly-in, but often they exist
independently of each other. Often members
of one community know nothing of the
others. Take instrument flying as an example.
When you first learned to fly there was
an entire system of routes, airspace, and
procedures you probably didn't even know
existed. After getting the rating you could
fly new places in different types of weather,
speak the lingo, understand the other radio
calls, and read the charts. Learning to fly
a helicopter unwraps another layer. Yes,
you understand a new type of flying and
uncover a world of new aircraft. But you'll
also learn things that make you a better
fixed-wing pilot.
Some are small, like how far away to
park your airplane from that Bell 505 on
the ramp, and some are more significant,
like where to look for them when entering
the pattern. Perhaps more important
than a transfer of skills to airplane flying
are the ways learning to fly a helicopter can
expand your view of aviation:
It opens a new community.
It's no secret that many airplane pilots
think helicopter pilots are nuts, and many
helicopter pilots think airplane pilots are
prima donnas. Harsh, yes, but also a prevailing
attitude. The two groups often
don't mix, something we should all work
to change. We should want our blue and
red communities to turn purple. Learning
to fly helicopters will enlighten you to an
entirely new community of pilots who
think differently, operate differently, and
experience aviation differently.
It will make you rethink risk
management.
In our aviation education we first sit in
a classroom and are told what is risky,
then learn to avoid risk in the airplane,
and finally begin to incorporate our own
values as we gain experience. Helicopter
pilots take the same courses, hear the
same stories, and read the same accident
reports, but draw wildly different conclusions.
For many students, their first
autorotation-a highly complex maneuver
that takes intense concentration and
leaves little margin for error-is initiated
lower than 500 feet above the ground.
The power rolls off and the student must
respond immediately, all while the ground
is rushing up in a way they would never
30,532
The number of pilots who held a
rotorcraft certificate in 2020.
experience in an airplane. It's a community
of pilots who choose to fly low under a
cloud deck, rather than get an instrument
clearance (in many cases it's not legal to
do so), who are generally more comfortable
flying at 500 feet than 5,000 feet, and
who count fuel reserves in minutes, rather
than hours. That's not to say it's all wrong.
But it will make you aware of a different
operating philosophy, and it will cause you
to question your own decisions and risk
management practices.
It will slow down your airplane.
You remember the first time you landed an
airplane and how everything was a blur?
How you slowly mastered landings while
the whole process became clearer, details
presented themselves, and time almost
seemed to slow down? Flying a helicopter,
especially a hypersensitive Robinson, will
reset your internal clock and slow down
your airplane even more. Ask helicopter
pilots their impression of transitioning
to fixed wing and most will tell you that
everything is really slow. Practicing engine
failures, stalls, and other maneuvers that
may seem hurried, frantic, or stressful will
transform into controlled, methodical
AOPA PILOT / August 2021
81
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AOPA Pilot Magazine - August 2021

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of AOPA Pilot Magazine - August 2021

Contents
AOPA Pilot Magazine - August 2021 - Intro
AOPA Pilot Magazine - August 2021 - BB1
AOPA Pilot Magazine - August 2021 - BB2
AOPA Pilot Magazine - August 2021 - Cover1
AOPA Pilot Magazine - August 2021 - Cover2
AOPA Pilot Magazine - August 2021 - Contents
AOPA Pilot Magazine - August 2021 - 2
AOPA Pilot Magazine - August 2021 - 3
AOPA Pilot Magazine - August 2021 - 4
AOPA Pilot Magazine - August 2021 - 5
AOPA Pilot Magazine - August 2021 - 6
AOPA Pilot Magazine - August 2021 - 7
AOPA Pilot Magazine - August 2021 - 8
AOPA Pilot Magazine - August 2021 - 9
AOPA Pilot Magazine - August 2021 - 10
AOPA Pilot Magazine - August 2021 - 11
AOPA Pilot Magazine - August 2021 - 12
AOPA Pilot Magazine - August 2021 - 13
AOPA Pilot Magazine - August 2021 - 14
AOPA Pilot Magazine - August 2021 - 15
AOPA Pilot Magazine - August 2021 - 16
AOPA Pilot Magazine - August 2021 - 17
AOPA Pilot Magazine - August 2021 - 18
AOPA Pilot Magazine - August 2021 - 19
AOPA Pilot Magazine - August 2021 - 20
AOPA Pilot Magazine - August 2021 - 21
AOPA Pilot Magazine - August 2021 - 22
AOPA Pilot Magazine - August 2021 - 23
AOPA Pilot Magazine - August 2021 - 24
AOPA Pilot Magazine - August 2021 - 25
AOPA Pilot Magazine - August 2021 - 26
AOPA Pilot Magazine - August 2021 - 27
AOPA Pilot Magazine - August 2021 - 28
AOPA Pilot Magazine - August 2021 - 29
AOPA Pilot Magazine - August 2021 - 30
AOPA Pilot Magazine - August 2021 - 31
AOPA Pilot Magazine - August 2021 - 32
AOPA Pilot Magazine - August 2021 - 33
AOPA Pilot Magazine - August 2021 - 34
AOPA Pilot Magazine - August 2021 - 35
AOPA Pilot Magazine - August 2021 - 36
AOPA Pilot Magazine - August 2021 - 37
AOPA Pilot Magazine - August 2021 - 38
AOPA Pilot Magazine - August 2021 - 39
AOPA Pilot Magazine - August 2021 - 40
AOPA Pilot Magazine - August 2021 - 41
AOPA Pilot Magazine - August 2021 - 42
AOPA Pilot Magazine - August 2021 - 43
AOPA Pilot Magazine - August 2021 - 44
AOPA Pilot Magazine - August 2021 - 45
AOPA Pilot Magazine - August 2021 - 46
AOPA Pilot Magazine - August 2021 - 47
AOPA Pilot Magazine - August 2021 - 48
AOPA Pilot Magazine - August 2021 - 49
AOPA Pilot Magazine - August 2021 - 50
AOPA Pilot Magazine - August 2021 - 51
AOPA Pilot Magazine - August 2021 - 52
AOPA Pilot Magazine - August 2021 - 53
AOPA Pilot Magazine - August 2021 - 54
AOPA Pilot Magazine - August 2021 - 55
AOPA Pilot Magazine - August 2021 - 56
AOPA Pilot Magazine - August 2021 - 57
AOPA Pilot Magazine - August 2021 - 58
AOPA Pilot Magazine - August 2021 - 59
AOPA Pilot Magazine - August 2021 - 60
AOPA Pilot Magazine - August 2021 - 61
AOPA Pilot Magazine - August 2021 - 62
AOPA Pilot Magazine - August 2021 - 63
AOPA Pilot Magazine - August 2021 - 64
AOPA Pilot Magazine - August 2021 - 65
AOPA Pilot Magazine - August 2021 - 66
AOPA Pilot Magazine - August 2021 - 67
AOPA Pilot Magazine - August 2021 - 68
AOPA Pilot Magazine - August 2021 - 69
AOPA Pilot Magazine - August 2021 - 70
AOPA Pilot Magazine - August 2021 - 71
AOPA Pilot Magazine - August 2021 - 72
AOPA Pilot Magazine - August 2021 - 73
AOPA Pilot Magazine - August 2021 - 74
AOPA Pilot Magazine - August 2021 - 75
AOPA Pilot Magazine - August 2021 - 76
AOPA Pilot Magazine - August 2021 - 77
AOPA Pilot Magazine - August 2021 - 78
AOPA Pilot Magazine - August 2021 - 79
AOPA Pilot Magazine - August 2021 - 80
AOPA Pilot Magazine - August 2021 - 81
AOPA Pilot Magazine - August 2021 - 82
AOPA Pilot Magazine - August 2021 - 83
AOPA Pilot Magazine - August 2021 - 84
AOPA Pilot Magazine - August 2021 - 85
AOPA Pilot Magazine - August 2021 - 86
AOPA Pilot Magazine - August 2021 - 87
AOPA Pilot Magazine - August 2021 - 88
AOPA Pilot Magazine - August 2021 - 89
AOPA Pilot Magazine - August 2021 - 90
AOPA Pilot Magazine - August 2021 - 91
AOPA Pilot Magazine - August 2021 - 92
AOPA Pilot Magazine - August 2021 - 93
AOPA Pilot Magazine - August 2021 - 94
AOPA Pilot Magazine - August 2021 - 95
AOPA Pilot Magazine - August 2021 - 96
AOPA Pilot Magazine - August 2021 - 97
AOPA Pilot Magazine - August 2021 - 98
AOPA Pilot Magazine - August 2021 - 99
AOPA Pilot Magazine - August 2021 - 100
AOPA Pilot Magazine - August 2021 - 101
AOPA Pilot Magazine - August 2021 - 102
AOPA Pilot Magazine - August 2021 - 103
AOPA Pilot Magazine - August 2021 - 104
AOPA Pilot Magazine - August 2021 - 105
AOPA Pilot Magazine - August 2021 - 106
AOPA Pilot Magazine - August 2021 - 107
AOPA Pilot Magazine - August 2021 - 108
AOPA Pilot Magazine - August 2021 - 109
AOPA Pilot Magazine - August 2021 - 110
AOPA Pilot Magazine - August 2021 - 111
AOPA Pilot Magazine - August 2021 - 112
AOPA Pilot Magazine - August 2021 - Cover3
AOPA Pilot Magazine - August 2021 - Cover4
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