Joe Ellis – Commercial Pilot [20 Feb 2016]

JEllisCommJoe began his commercial training exactly one year ago. After a year of training, practicing and five check ride cancellations because of weather, he passed his checkride February 20th. Business travel, aircraft not available when Joe was and winter weather all had a part in the long endeavor. But, Joe persevered always keeping the end goal in sight. Congratulations!

Cuyler Binion Goes Commercial

CBinionEven though he lives in Seattle Cuyler finds himself back at BOI to tag on his Commercial rating.  Always good to see you, just keep the slugs in Seattle!

Sharki Goes IFR

Ya’ll know Sharki has been working on an instrument rating.  Well, to bring in the new year on Tuesday January 5th the checkride was taken.  Rumor has it the only slip occurred while preflighting.  She slid down the wing while disembarking the aircraft.  Given the option to reschedule she said no way.  The gash on the hand was tended to and the flight commenced.  Examiner was Greg Herbert.  Congrats!

Sharki Instrument Checkride 2-250

TJ Westall Adds a Multi Rating

TJ Westall trained with Ponderosa for all of his fixed-wing ratings from his private pilot certificate to his multi-engine.  Today, June 26th he completed his multi-engine rating in 9.7 hours including the check ride (with Jullian Pridmore-Brown), and in triple digit temporatures!  TJ Westall wants our members to know, “Getting a multi-engine in less than 10 hours is possible…so go out and do it.”

And Go Vandals!

Matt Brigliadoro Solos!

Matt Brigliadoro is an air traffic controller at Mountain Home Air Force Base and the BOI Tower must have known, because they had this student pilot do 4 360’s during at least 2 of his trips around the pattern, and asked him questions about a fire in the distance.  Matt said to Ponderosa staff after landing, “I was kinda busy”.  Congratulations on your first solo.

Cheryl McCord Solos!

Cheryl’s schedule allowed for only midday flying when the heat, mechanical turbulence and thermals were at their worst.  All of this was making it rather challenging to put the finishing polish on  her landings.  CFI David Moler suggested she try flying in the morning.  So, on June 28 at 7:00 she did a couple landings and that’s all it took.  David got out of the plane and Cheryl did her 3 touch & goes in KBOI.  By the time she was done, the temp had increased to nearly 100 degrees and was still rising.

Brandon Jones Is Moving On


Brandon Jones is taking his CFI rating, recently earned at Ponderosa, and moving to Texas.  He has accepted a gig instructing foreign students who eventually will be going back home to take up airline jobs.  The job offers Brandon a clear path to the cockpit of a regional jet.  Flying RJ’s will go a long way in helping Brandon achieve his long term goal of flying corporate jets.  Congratulations Brandon everyone at PAC wishes you the best.

Steve Boatman Solos @ BOI

Steve boatman battled 95 degree weather to solo on June 8th.  He reported that the engine sounded a little rough to him.  Instructor Jon-Michael said it must have just been quieter in the cockpit finally.  Good job guys.

Fred Ritchie Solos @ BOI

Fred soloed during the calm before the storm in KBOI on June 5th.  He was ready and his instructor Tyson Kepler saw an opportunity.  Shortly after his flight the sunset storm came rolling in.  Congratulations to both of you!

Oil Change Change

  Important: New Adding Oil process  

OilTote-300Do you have nightmares the night before a flight that involves finding a low oil indication on the dipstick during the preflight inspection thus requiring you to open up the tote and once again being confronted with a mini oil spill.  In our continual quest of improving members experience the process of adding oil has been tweaked.  In general the change is that any item that touches oil is immediately thrown in the trash and not stored in the aircraft.  The goal is to keep the tote clean and to not have any oil contaminated items in it.

Next time you have to add a quart expect to find a nice clean tote with two quarts of oil individually wrapped in a ziplock bag.  Affixed to the bag are instructions and inside you will see disposable shop towels for cleaning hands and oil spills plus a paper funnel.  Now read close – here is the drill.  Remove the quart of oil from the bag, remove its’ cap and set aside within reach.  Take the funnel and place in the oil filler tube applying light constant pressure to it.  With your free hand pour the oil in the funnel.  Now here is the big change, drum roll please  – the empty oil container goes directly to the nearest trash can.  Do not pass Go, do not collect $200 but go immediately to the trash can by the fuel pump or the one near the north end of the shade hangar.  Along with the empty oil container throw away the funnel and any paper towels used.  Can you see the theme here?  We do not want any oil contaminated items placed back in the tote or airplane.  Finally, remember that tail number marked bag you took the oil from?  That is what you take in after your flight and drop off on the desk.

Now you can lose sleep over something like not remembering to close your flight plan.