Sunday, July 12, 2009

Gila Bend - Phoenix / Cessna 182RG Skylane (N7109V) / VFR

I haven't flown in a while, and this was a very pleasant early morning flight from hellish Gila Bend to hellish Phoenix. Fortunately, my cockpit was fully air-conditioned with an automagic system (virtually STCed) that has no effect on aircraft performance, so I didn't have to deal with the 110° F heat outside the aircraft. Except with respect to performance calculations, that is. At 110°, the density altitude at Sky Harbor was 4660 feet, which is closer to the actual altitude of Sedona (4800 feet) than that of Phoenix. Fortunately, both airports have runways that are more than long enough for my small Cessna, even in hot weather.

I flew by pilotage exclusively, as I know this area very well. I climbed to 3500 feet and headed north until the bend in the road (Interstate 10), at which point I turned east. I could already make out the downtown area of Phoenix, and I knew that the airport was just to the right of that, so it was easy to make my way in. I was cleared into the Class B and made a straight-in approach to runway 8. The landing was so smooth that I almost didn't hear the gear touch.

From runway 8, I taxied over to Cutter Aviation on the other side of the field and parked there.