Category Archives: Weather

CFI Brief: Icing

Ice sucks, unless of course you are a hockey player, figure skater, or just want a nice, cold, tasty beverage. But in terms of aviation, ice sucks. In general, icing is any deposit of ice forming on an object. In aviation icing is considered to be one of the major weather hazards affecting flight. We […]

Weather: Fronts

Today, we’re featuring an excerpt from Bob Gardner’s The Complete Private Pilot. A weather front exists where air masses with different properties meet. The terms “warm” and “cold” are relative: 30°F air is warmer than 10°F air, but that “warm” air doesn’t call for bathing suits. Cold air is more dense than warm air, so […]

Weather: Measurement of Atmospheric Pressure

Today’s post is an excerpt from the Pilot’s Handbook of Aeronautical Knowledge (8083-25B). Atmospheric pressure historically was measured in inches of mercury (“Hg) by a mercurial barometer. The barometer measures the height of a column of mercury inside a glass tube. A section of the mercury is exposed to the pressure of the atmosphere, which […]

Weather: Precipitation

We’re seeing rain for the first time in over two months in the Seattle area right now, so how about a refresher on precipitation today on the Learn to Fly Blog? Today’s post is excerpted from Aviation Weather (AC 00-6B). Precipitation is any of the forms of water particles, whether liquid or solid, that fall […]

CFI Brief: Sunset Weather

What could be better than taking your significant other on a romantic sunset flight around your local airport? I’ll tell you what, taking your significant other on a romantic sunset flight during an absolutely epic sunset! Sounds awesome right, but just how are you suppose to know when an epic sunset is going to happen? […]

CFI Brief: Atmospheric Stability

Today we will take Monday’s post on temperature inversions a step further  with a discussion on atmospheric stability and the types of weather we can expect with a stable and unstable air mass. Atmospheric stability is defined as the resistance of the atmosphere to vertical motion. A stable atmosphere resists an upward or downward movement. […]

Weather: Temperature Inversions

Today’s post on temperature inversions comes to us from The Pilot’s Manual: Ground School (PM-2C). Temperature normally decreases with altitude. In the standard atmosphere the temperature is assumed to decrease by approximately 1.98°C for each 1,000 feet climbed in a stationary air mass. In practice, we can assume a decrease, or temperature lapse rate, of […]

CFI Brief: Thunderstorms

An important aspect of becoming a private pilot is having an understanding of weather. Even more important is having a thorough understanding of weather that could pose a potential risk to flight. The goal of this understanding is so you can identify and avoid these hazardous conditions as part of your preflight preparations and inflight […]

Weather: Operational Factors of Thunderstorms and Microbursts

Icing, reduced visibility from fog or particulates, turbulence, windshear, thunderstorms, and microbursts are all types of weather that pose significant operational challenges. We’ve already discussed the weather theory behind thunderstorms and other related weather events, so today we’ll focus on the things to keep in mind should you ever find yourself operating in the vicinity […]

CFI Brief: Frost

It’s been cold here in Seattle and across many parts of the country over the last several days. All week long I have had the pleasure of scraping an inch of ice and frost off my windshield each morning. If my car’s windshield is icing over, the same can probably be said for all the […]

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