Having been watching the weather for a couple of days now on the run up to my first flying lesson I was hopeful of some good weather. The past few days have seems some mixed weather in the UK, cold nights, foggy mornings, clear skies and cloud, all over the space of a couple of days, the forecast for today when I looked a few days ago showed clear skies, 30% chance of rain and the odd cloud. I remained optimistic for today, however yesterday when I looked, the forecast was showing a 60% chance of rain and cloud coverage, this prepared me for the worst today, but still I got everything prepared last night, got the GoPro charged, the battery pack charged, and got my bag ready with optimism that the weather would clear. So this morning I checked the METAR down in Shoreham and saw the cloud coverage was quite low, and the aerodrome was operating under IMC condition, so wasn’t hopeful. I rang up Sussex Flying Club at around 9am to check with my instructor what they thought the weather would do today, and they said “At the minute it doesn’t look good, however ring back in around 1-2 hours to check as it may clear”, so kept checking the METAR, and it barely changed, and rang back at 11am and it was still the same message of “Sadly the weather conditions haven’t improved and would be better to reschedule the lesson, how does Tuesday sound?”.
So my first lesson is now booked for Tuesday the 14th, admittedly I was disappointed in having to reschedule but understand why. A basic private pilots licence with no additional ratings doesn’t allow them to fly in Instrument Meteorological Conditions (IMC) we can only fly in Visual Meteorological Condition (VMC) these minima are set out as a minimum of 1000ft clear of cloud vertically and 1500m horizontally clear of cloud with a minimum flight visibility of 5km.
This was the weather an hour before my flight was scheduled to be, it looks complicated but can easily be decoded, and it carries a lot of information for the pilots. The top one is the traditional METAR, and the bottom one has been decoded by the app. It’s a useful tool to have as it’s updated every 30 minutes with every METAR update – the app is called AeroWeather Lite, they offer a free app, a paid app and in-app purchase for premium additions, I don’t feel they are needed at the minute, but could prove useful in the future.
This I expect is the first of many cancellations and reschedules due to the wonderful British weather, I have looked at the weather for Tuesday and it looks alright, however that’s what I said about today and look how that turned out! I guess this gives me a little bit more time to play around with GoPro settings and finding the right ones for what I want. Also it’ll give me some more time to get the blog post written up for my first lesson, edit the video, and review my lesson. I’ll keep you updated!