The Mighty 150
In the carefree manor of all young, handsome, lean, mean, firm-jawed, tough-as-nails, slim-hipped, curly-haired, thin-lipped, clean talking, flat-bellied, hairy-chested, biceps-bulging, steely-eyed, sinewy-muscled, tight-bunned, lean-shanked, milk-drinking, apple-pie-eating, red-blooded, pure-thought-filled, hunk-a-doodle-doo, all-American stud-muffins and heroic deifiers of gravity, that is to say pilots, I gunned the mighty engine of my trusty Cessna and leap out on to the runway (most of the preceding description was shamelessly plagiarized from www.kcdawnpatrol.org).
It was a great day to fly and my eager craft quivered with anticipation. I lined up NOVEMBER175 on the center and with a casual salute, fire walled the mighty 0-200. With a throaty roar she thundered to life clawing the air with a ferocity that would make an arrogant man humble. The acceleration was almost unbearable and for a moment I nearly blacked out. However, my many, many weeks and months of flying experienced kicked in as I immediately used the lower body muscle flexing techniques of all who pilot such awesome craft. Soon I was only experiencing a slight tunnel vision but there was no time for relief. Instantly I was scanning the complex instrument panel chanting a mantra like all good pilots: ENGINE RMP, CHECK, OIL PRESSURE, CHECK, DETECTING FORWARD MOVEMENT, CHECK. All indications were in the green as the acceleration of the mighty 150 increased.
Things where happening so fast that I scarcely had time to note the indicated airspeed 30 knots, my God what power! In moments we had reached lift-off speed and I eagerly hauled back on the yoke. The 150 virtually catapulted into the air with a feeling like one had been shot from a cannon. Immediately we started to climb out at the mind numbing rate of 200-300 feet per minute. As my mighty bird hurtled heavenward I began looking for those pesky 172s and Cherokees that always seem to be sneaking up on me from behind. With none in sight I stomped the rudder and heaved the yoke over into a wicked 20 degree bank any 727 would be envious of, making my crosswind turn. I was beginning to get lightheaded from my rapid ascension into the heavens when I noticed I was approaching pattern altitude. Again with a mighty stomp and the g forces mounting I made the turn to downwind. Soon we were cruising at a wicked speed hurtling over the ground at nearly 90 knots.
Before I ever had time to think we had crossed the end of the mile long runway. It was time for power reductions if I ever hoped to get this mighty metal flying creature back on the ground. With a contemptuous toss of my head I chopped the power and struggled to pull the nose up, fighting Newtons laws in an attempt to slow the hurtling craft to flap speed. Noticing with relief, and prayer of thanks to Clyde V. Cessna, that my airspeed was already well within flap speed I started hanging out everything she had. Ten degrees, twenty degrees, thirty degrees the wind noise is deafening. Now we have turned base and final and are staring down the runway on final approach.
Briefly I ponder, will I be able to stop her in time? However, I have no time to dwell on this as the runway numbers hurtle by. As the airspeed leaves us we settle like a lead zeppelin and with another mighty yank on the yoke we slam into the runway like a Corsair into the heaving deck of a carrier. Like a mad man stomping on imaginary spiders I fight to keep the craft centered and desperately gouge the brakes. With a groan of protest and the acrid smell of burned brakes I somehow manage to slow the craft. Down safe at last! Hurrah! As we leave the runway the mighty 150 virtually quivers with suppressed excitement (Damn that shimmy!). With a grateful pat on the dash I sooth the powerful beast and whisper, Down safe and sound, once again we live to fly another day.
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Last Modified on April 12,1998
All images and text copyright 1998, Barbara @ Babes & Airplanes