Instrument Flight 47: Approaches in IMC

Tonight I finally got to do some approaches in IMC. (I got .8 hours of IMC plus half an hour of hood time.) There was a layer of clouds from about 1000 to 1300 feet above the ground, and scattered clouds above that.

The approaches weren’t great, but since they were my first in IMC, and it was also night, I was happy just to get through them without my flight instructor having to take over.

The wind was fairly strong, and it was bumpy, so I was busy. I got disoriented for a while, but not quite bad enough to lose control. (I was afraid that if I had to let him take over, I might never be able to fly in IMC on my own.)

The problem is mostly psychological. Wearing the hood is supposed to be the same as being in IMC, but I don’t think anybody really believes that. (If they are really the same thing, why do we log actual and simulated instrument time separately?)

Another factor is that the foggles do not completely block my view of the outside. I can see a little out of the corner of my eye (if eyes are round, how can they have corners?), but not enough to make the glasses worthless. Without trying, I can tell whether we’re over land or water, in a cloud, etc., from the side view, and anytime I look up at the compass, I can see straight ahead.

Today: 0.5 hours instrument time
Total: 5.6 hours IMC time
Total: 76.1 hours instrument time

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