Today was a short ground session with Adam to do our initial flight planning for my first cross country flight. Adam has selected Sheboygan County Memorial Airport (KSBM
) as our first destination, 53 nautical miles northeast of Watertown. Armed with the current weather, we planned as though we were flying this evening. The flight is relatively short, so planning began with a straight plot on a sectional chart and determination of the true course. The true course is converted into a magnetic then compass heading by correction for wind and magnetic deviation and variation. Then, checkpoints are selected on the route to help in verifying our location and speed. Performance data gives us cruise speed, climb and fuel burn information. We also looked along the route for potential alternate airports in case of emergency or sudden bad weather. So, based on our calculations, it should take us 29 minutes at an altitude of 3500' MSL (based on most favorable winds aloft), and fuel consumption of 4.74 gallons.
Saturday morning we'll calculate the data all over again and fly it for real. And then, as soon as I get back, we'll be leaving on a camping trip to, that's right, the Sheboygan area. Too bad we can't pack the gear in the plane.