(c) Angeles City Flying Club
In an attempt to make the year 2012 a kick-butt year, my friends and I decided that every month, we’d do something that we’ve never done before. Sounds simple enough, right? You’d think I’d go with something like dance in the rain, tell my crush I like him, practice yoga or I don’t know, head on over to Manila Zoo, but nah, I decided that if I were to do something to make this year awesome, it’d have to be big or why even bother? So yes, for my birthday month I decided to head on over to Pampanga to fly an ultra light plane!
When in Manila, take a break from the hustle and bustle of the city and head on out to Pampanga to enjoy the blue skies and lush greenery. Seriously, driving to Pampanga along NLEX is quite therapeutic. It’s always a treat to look out your window and see such beautiful landscape as opposed to a cluster of concrete buildings. But anyways! It was my birthday, and I wanted to fly a plane, so off to Angeles City Flying Club I went! It wasn’t difficult going there as all we had to do was drive until the end of NLEX and from there, we were dependent on my friend’s GPS to get us to our destination. We would’ve gotten there in a short period of time after leaving Manila, but because it was such a beautiful day, we couldn’t help but act like tourists and were constantly pulling over to take pictures.
We finally arrived at the Flying Club and were once again greeted by blue skies and greenery. Once in a while, we’d see and hear planes flying overhead. I was greeted by Terry, the owner of the club, and after telling him about my wanting to go up, up and away! He said he’d be glad to fly with me. Ladies and gentlemen, as daring and adventerous as I am, I was feeling a bit nervous, so when the owner said he’d take me up personally, I started to feel more at ease. The price you pay for flying up is dependent on how long your flight is, but because it was my birthday, the owner was sweet enough to double the time that I paid for! Such a blessing :)
Now, before I continue on with my adventure, here’s a little background about Angeles City Flying Club: The Angeles City Flying Club opened it’s doors in 1993 and has since then been dubbed as the country’s premier ultralight flying club in the Philippines and one of the best in Asia. The club not only entails outstanding facilities and memberships for local and international pilots, but they also offer “sport pilot Training, ultralight rental, large hangars and maintenance facilities. (The club also has) three 230 m2hangars, a club house with office, training room, canteen, and a swimming pool with bamboo huts to shield you from the sun.” Perfect for an exciting family or barkada day out! Not only that, they also offer overnight accommodations for those who can’t get enough of flying. Oh, and before I forget, an ultra light plane is a 1 to 2 person fixed-wing, lightweight aircraft that may come in a variety of designs, but the one I rode in looked like this:
(c) Angeles City Flying Club
I was incredibly excited and nervous as Terry went off to prepare his ultralight for our flight. In fact I was praying for safety and counting down the seconds til I’d be up in the air, with the wind blowing in my face and all. After a few minutes of waiting and checking out the club’s mini restaurant, I was called down by one of the employees and escorted onto the field to where the plane was waiting. As I walked towards the plane, my legs began to feel like jello, I was such a nervous wreck! Good thing my friends were there to cheer me on. They were comfortably seated in the club’s restaurant which allows diners to view the field and to watch planes take-off and land.
The staff and Terry were very friendly and did their best to put me at ease (I think they noticed the look-of-terror-but-still-smiling-look on my face). They reassured me that in their 19 years of operation, they’ve never lost a single pilot or passenger in an accident. Ok, ok, I was slowly calming down, and then Terry turned on the engine. All I could think was, ‘HOLY COW, THIS IS IT! I’M REALLY DOING THIS!” Terry went on to point out the different handles and knobs, and explained what certain buttons did and etc. Now that I think about it, flying an ultralight plane is comparable to flight games with joy sticks. Only, if you crash here, you crash for real. Haha.
Here we go! Up, up and away! I was initially petrified, to the point that I would not let go of my seat belt to take pictures and all, and that when he’d tell me to look out my window because he was pointing to something, I wouldn’t. However, after a while, I calmed down as the scene below was absolutely breathtaking and was getting harder and harder to ignore!
Pardon this incredibly goofy picture of myself, I was literally so high that I was so happy :)
Terry was kind enough to let me take control for a good 10 seconds or so, before I let him go back to doing the flying. Ergo, ha! I flew a plane! I don’t care if it was only for 10 seconds, the bottom line is, I flew a plane! But alas, the awesomeness that I refer to as me up in the air had come to an end and it was time for us to land. Terry is such an awesome pilot, if you closed your eyes, you wouldn’t have known that we’ve landed, the landing was THAT smooth. Kudos to him! I guess that’s why he’s the top pilot at the club. The flight that I availed of is called the Trial Introductory Flight and entails your flying and a certificate for having been able to do so. So yes, here I am, looking all happy and dorky with my certificate:
So, When in Manila and in need of a break from the craziness that is city life, head on over to Angeles City Flying Club and avail of their Trial Introductory Flight and experience something you will surely never forget!
Angeles City Flying Club
Woodland Airpark Talimundok, Sta. Maria Magalang, Pampanga Philippines
Landline : +63 45 8022101
Monday – Tuesday 0800 – 1700
Wednesday – Closed
Thursday – Sunday 0800 – 1700
Angeles City Flying Club: My First Flying Adventure