Aviation Wisdom

A superior pilot is one who uses superior judgement to avoid situations that would require using superior skill


“Instrument flying is when your mind gets a grip on the fact that there is vision beyond sight.” – U.S. Navy Approach magazine circa W.W.II


“If you’re faced with a forced landing, fly the thing as far into the crash as possible.” – Bob Hoover


“Though I Fly Through The Valley Of Death I Shall Fear No Evil, For I Am At 80,000 feet And Climbing.” – sign over the entrance to the SR-71 location on Kadena AB, Okinawa


“You’ve never been lost until you’ve been lost at Mach 3.”- Paul F. Crickmore


“The emergencies you train for almost never happen. It’s the one you can’t train for that kills you.” – Ernest K. Gann, advice from the Old Pelican


“If you want to grow old as a pilot you’ve got to know when to push it, and when to back off.” – Chuck Yeager


“There is no reason to fly through a thunderstorm in peacetime.” – Sign over Squadron Ops desk at Davis-Monthan AFB, AZ, 1970.


“The only time an aircraft has too much fuel on board is when it is on fire.” – Sir Charles Kingsford Smith, sometime before his death in the 1920’s


“If you can’t afford to do something right, then be darn sure you can afford to do it wrong.” – Charlie Nelson


“Just remember, if you crash because of weather your funeral will be held on a sunny day.” – Layton A. Bennett


“Keep thy airspeed up, lest the earth come from below and smite thee.” – William Kershner


“When a prang seems inevitable, endeavour to strike the softest, cheapest object in the vicinity, as slowly and gently as possible.” – advice given to RAF pilots during W.W.II


6 responses to “Aviation Wisdom

  1. virgil xenophon

    HI GUY!

    Nice Site! Great to see you! I’ll add another saying: “The two most worthless things in the world to a pilot are the sky above ya and the runway behind ya.”

    • VX: …and the fuel in the truck that you left behind.
      Appreciate the comments and always enjoy your commentary at Chez Lex.

  2. virgil xenophon

    BTW, what is the AC in pic on your logo? Looks awfully like an old Hawker Hunter to me at first glance….

    • That’s the venerable Delphin L-29. The Cyrillic writing is still on the instruments so labels were put alongside key switches. Lots of fun but lots of Jet A.

  3. Great site, Wilko. Another favorite quote from Gann: “If the airplane is still in one piece, don’t cheat on it. Ride the bastard down”.

    • Gann had a way with words. Perhaps the best GA author ever, and his stories were true.
      For yucks I recommend: “Moondogs Academy of the Air” by Pete Fusco. Pure entertainment.

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