We all know that current means 3 landings in the past 90 days.  We also all know that 3 landings do not truly give you a tune-up to actually be back at the top of your game.  Give yourself a gift of a flight or two or three to get back in the saddle.  Take time to review the following:

  • Look your paperwork over…see when your flight review is due, your currency, your balloon annual, your insurance…
  • Check your equipment over and make sure everything is ready to go and in good condition including your fan, instruments, launch harness, radios, trailer.
  • Review your emergency procedures, practice a burner relight, practice what to do in the event of a fuel leak, how to avoid powerlines.
  • Crews are always rusty on that first time out in a while. Give them a chance to dust off the cobwebs.
  • Review your various sources for obtaining weather information. Make sure the links and numbers all still work.
  • Do your first flight with another pilot and give each other the chance to get comfortable on the burner. Get back to navigating, do some steep descents, practice your scan, get the feel back for the balloon.
  • Masks for everyone as well as cleaning/sanitizing your equipment. Making hand sanitizer readily available to everyone and the adjustments you would make for post-flight refreshments.

And if after doing that tune-up flight, you still don’t feel comfortable yet, give yourself the gift of another one…repeat as necessary.  You do this for yourself but more importantly, for your passengers….the people I refer to as the unsuspecting public….because they expect you to be at the top of your game.

So, whenever it is the right time for you to get back in the air, start now getting ready.