Flare height. Use trees and surrounding objects to help with judging the flare height.

Exercise 18 – Landings

This exercise will be incorporated into every lesson and will be practiced thoroughly before solo. The landing is a controlled collision with the ground and is unfortunately one of the sole things passengers will judge the comfort of a flight on. You can have the most perfect flight but an interesting landing is what will be talked about.

Normal Landing

Crosswind Landing

Short Field Landing

Soft Field Landing

Overshoot/Balked Approach

This maneuver is a very important one to know. So important that it is the first part of the exercise on landings. The hardest part of this whole thing is making the decision to overshoot in the first place. Most pilots take an overshoot as defeat whereas it just make the best out of a bad situation.

Reference Material

• FTM (Flight Training Manual)

• Aircraft Information Manual/Pilot Operating Handbook (POH)

• Ground Instruction Notes



• Review reasons for an overshoot.

• Review the proper procedure for a balked landing/overshoot as per the POH.

• Be able to answer the following questions:

1) Why learn overshoots?

2) What is a stabilized approach?

3) Name some reasons as to why we overshoot.

4) How do we fix a balloon? A bounce? What about skipping?

5) If the runway begins moving down in your windscreen, what do you do?

6) What is the proper procedure to conduct a balked approach as per the POH?

7) What should you do if you are too close behind another airplane also on final approach that will not have cleared the runway in time for you to land?

8) What should you do if you find on final approach that conditions are too severe for your experience?

9) If you go around because of an aircraft taking off just ahead of you, in relation to the extended centerline, where should you climb?

10) With the application of full power, as well as the nose wanting to pitch, to which side will there be a tendency to yaw? How do you counteract this yaw?

11) Sketch a typical go around and write down the main points of how to fly it.

Tips/Rules of Thumb/Theory

•  Attitude + Power = Performance. Do not stall!

• When in doubt, just fly the plane.

• An overshoot is always your first option in an unstabilized approach.

• Sit in the cockpit of the aircraft while on the ground and practice this procedure from memory with the engine off. This will engrain the procedure to heart so you’ll be able to do it during the real moment.

Normal Landing

Reference Material

• FTM (Flight Training Manual)

• Aircraft Information Manual/Pilot Operating Handbook (POH)

• Ground Instruction Notes



• Review the radio communication procedures for you airport.

• Review the arrival procedures and the checklists associated with the landing.

• Be able to answer the following questions:

1) What are the four stages to an arrival/landing?

2) What is a stabilized approach?

3) At what point do we initiate a flare? What visual cues do you look for?

4) What is the approach speed of the aircraft?

5) If the runway begins moving up in your windscreen, what do you do?

6) At what speed should we exit the runway?

7) Why do we look at the end of the runway in the flare?

8) What is the maximum flap extended speed of the aircraft? Is there more than one?

9) What impression will a narrow/wide runway give you during the flare? What influence may this have on your flare?

Tips/Rules of Thumb/Theory

• During approach, use power to control your rate of descent and pitch to control airspeed.

• During approach, if the runway numbers are staying stationary on the windscreen, you will reach that spot.

• 3 stages to flare: final approach, level cruise, and slightly nose up.

• Always look at the far end of the runway in the flare.

• Let the aircraft sink and touchdown on the runway, never force it down!

 Main wheels should touchdown first to keep the weight off the nose wheel. Why? 

 Use the runway numbers to determine whether you are high, low or on the approach path.

• If you extend your downwind leg because of traffic spacing, manage your power setting on base leg to prevent a low/shallow approach.

Flare height. Use trees and surrounding objects to help with judging the flare height.


Crosswind Landing


• Review the crosswind takeoff and landing procedures for your aircraft.

• Review how to counteract drift and maintain a proper track.

• Review how to perform a sideslip.

• Be able to answer the following questions:

1) How do we prevent the aircraft from drifting?

2) Describe the positions of the ailerons during a crosswind landing and rollout with a right crosswind.

3) Are there crosswind limitations on the aircraft? Are they actually limitations?

4) What are some factors that could limit the maximum crosswind?

5) In strong and gusty crosswind conditions, what flap setting makes the airplane easier to control? Why?

6) Name the three methods of of handling a crosswind landing.

7) During the landing roll, which control surface keeps us straight? Which keeps the wings level?

Tips/Rules of Thumb/Theory

• Allow the aircraft to crab after take-off to maintain a proper track unless you are to fly a heading.

• Just because the POH may have a maximum demonstrated crosswind, it doesn’t mean it is YOURs.

• Lowering the nose and decreasing flap settings will help with directional control and stopping.

• If the airplane begins to drift, you need to change your bank. If the aircraft is not aligned with the centerline, you need to change the rudder input.

• Strong crosswinds are often accompanied by gusts and turbulence. Consideration should be given to use a partial flap setting and higher approach speed to give you better controllability.

• Having a head/tail wind on base will influence your ground speed. Anticipate this and make an early or later than normal turn to final.

• Be aware of possible illusions in strong windy conditions.



Short Field Landing


• Review the short field landing procedures for your aircraft including any amplified procedures.

• Review controlling the aircraft in slow flight.

• Be able to answer the following questions:

1) Can the point of touchdown be before the aim point you specified during the approach?

2) Which sort of approach, power-on or off, gives you the most control over the approach and touchdown point?

3) What are two factors that would require a short field landing be performed?

4) Which approach gradient, steep or shallow, would you fly if the landing distance is short because of obstacles in the approach path? At what flap setting? Which airspeed would you fly?

5) When should the flaps be retracted on the landing? When should be apply maximum brakes?

Tips/Rules of Thumb/Theory

• With no obstacles consider a normal to shallow approach path; opposite with obstacles. 

• Only once the aircraft is positively on the ground should the flaps be retracted.  

• On short field landings, once the aircraft touches down, the flaps are raised during the roll to lessen the lift developed by the wings and transfer the weight to the aircraft wheels as quickly as possible, thus being more effective stopping the aircraft.

• Since the nose will be higher than in a normal landing hardly any flare is needed. The flare should be started closer to the ground with some power left on at the beginning of the flare if the speed is low. The airplane will touchdown as soon as the throttle is closed.

• Aim to cross the airport boundary with power on at the selected speed at the minimum altitude consistent with obstacle clearance. If the airspeed is too high, the float may be significant and unnecessary runway wasted.




Soft/Unprepared Field Landing


• Review the soft field landing procedure

• Review situation when this type of landing would be required..

• Be able to answer the following questions:

1) When would you use a this technique? Would you only use it on a grass field?

2) What is ground effect? How does it affect the aircraft’s performance?

3) What three items regarding a runway would you evaluate before using it?

4) When on a soft surface, what is the risk for the wheels?

5) What wind direction and flap setting would you plan on landing with for a soft-field landing?

6)  How does the speed at touchdown for a soft-field landing compare to that of a normal landing? How is the risk of the wheels digging in reduced?

Tips/Rules of Thumb/Theory

• Don’t land the aircraft if you can’t take off later.

•  Approach with full flaps if conditions exist and touch down as gently and as slowly as possible.

•  Hold the nose wheel off and avoid using the brakes. Keep rolling on a soft surface

•  If parking overnight, try and park on a hard surface.

•  On occasions, power may be required at the end of a landing roll to keep the airplane moving. 

All of this information on pilot training and flight training in Canada is also available at www.myflighttraining.ca.