Night currency

I hadn’t been out flying for a month again, for various reasons. The past week has been pretty much constant high winds; 18 kt gusting to 26 (that’s 21-30 MPH)  was not uncommon from sunup to sundown and through the night. Finally this morning was nice, with about a 6K wind according to the METAR.

I flew a short distance to Scribner (KSCB), which was built during WWII as a bomber and P-47 training field. It was also camouflaged so well that visiting pilots couldn’t find it. One of the old runways served as a drag strip for many years, but that’s long gone now as well. The long runway is 17/35, the short one is 12/30. As there was no other traffic around, I purposely picked 17 to get in some crosswind landing practice. Then I headed back to Millard for a few laps around the pattern, and by this time I had a choppy (though not abusive) crosswind there as well.

I turned the plane over to another club member, then came back about half an hour after sunset to start preflight again. As I started my taxi from the hangars, it occurred to me that not only had I not done any night takeoffs or landings since May, I’d never flown at night without a CFI. Oh well. Conditions were nice, about an 8 knot wind straight down runway 12. I did four laps, full stop and taxi back each time, and each one was better than the one before. I did a short-field on the third lap and soft-field on the fourth… held the nosewheel off for close to a hundred yards after touchdown.

So, just under 3 hours in the plane for me today, I’m legal to carry passengers after dark again, and another Nebraska win in the books. Doesn’t get much better than this.