Gravity sucks. Learn to fly.

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Learning to fly

After you’ve learnt to fly, life will never quite be the same.

Nothing beats soaring through the highways of the sky, above all obstacles. And you have the opportunity to do just that right on our doorstep at Morningstar Flight Academy.

Flying is not as daunting as you might think. At its most basic, flying straight and level normally can be mastered within five to 10 minutes, turning, climbing and descending correctly and safely. But it requires a bit of practice. You’ll also be taught how to use the stick/yoke, rudder and throttle with coordinated inputs to conduct all manoeuvres smoothly.

Within 10 to 13 hours you’ll wrap up the basics while preparing for your first solo flight. After that, it’s some book work, lots of practical flying, as well as radio work, learning to navigate, plan and doing cross-country flights safely.

Open from sunrise to sunset seven days a week, Morningstar Flight Academy is where you’ll get top-deck personal attention from suitably qualified instructors at your preferred pace.

The academy offers flight training for: Private Pilot’s Licence (PPL); National Pilot’s Licence (NPL); Commercial Pilot’s Licence (CPL); Flight Instructor Rating; Tailwheel Rating; CAA-approved Flight Simulator; plus Instrument and Night Ratings.

Try before you buy

If you’d rather sample before buying (always a good idea!), then simply sign up for an introductory flight. This entails a 15-minute safety briefing after which you’ll fly with an instructor for 45 minutes.

When meeting your instructor, you’ll participate in the all-important pre-flight inspection and he/she will then explain the effect of the flight control surfaces and systems, in addition to the ins and outs of the instruments. You’re now ready for take-off.

After levelling off at a safe altitude and speed, your instructor will hand you the controls. Pinch yourself to make sure it’s real. The instructor will show you how to climb and descend, as well as perform basic bank and turn manoeuvres. And all the while, the view of Table Mountain is as good as it gets!

But oh dear, all too soon you’ll have to relinquish the controls to your instructor for the expert landing. Back on terra firma, press the replay button in your brain.

Private Pilot’s Licence

A PPL allows you to fly recreationally. You may start training at age 15, but you’ll only be permitted to test for your PPL at age 17. That’s why most students wait until they’re 16 to start a flying career.

Before testing for your PPL you’ll need a minimum of 45 hours flying time logged in the aircraft, as well as passing the theory exams. These consist of Air Law, basic aircraft technical, flight planning, navigation, meteorology, radio and so forth.

Hire and fly is also an option. But you must have an SA-validated PPL and at least 5 hours on the type and model of aircraft.

Unfortunately, to comply with the South African Civil Aviation Authority (CAA) rules, only one person at a time is allowed in the aircraft with an instructor for the introductory flight. If you decide to continue with your training, this time will be credited towards your PPL training hours.

The academy sure has an impressive aircraft fleet – from light sport, Sling, Piper, Cessna, Mooney, as well as a high-performance complex BARON B58 Twin.

Why wait? To paraphrase Leonardo da Vinci, once you’ve tasted flight, your eyes will forever look skyward with longing.

Book for training or an introductory flight: 021 5693726/079 5077122; fly@msfa.co.za; Morningstar Airfield; Van Schoorsdrif Rd, N7 Cape Farms. Introductory Training Flight @ R1600