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San Diego Hour Bulding March/April

Old 2nd Jan 2012, 14:12
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Thread Starter
Join Date: May 2010
Location: Around and about
Age: 30
Posts: 83
San Diego Hour Bulding March/April

I'm looking to do some hours in San Diego due to weather constraints here in the UK. If anyone has any experience of doing this it would be great to hear from you. All the best.
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Old 4th Jan 2012, 13:57
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Join Date: Mar 2009
Location: Spain
Posts: 13
Recommend AAA in San Diego


I trained for my PPL at Anglo-American Aviation just outside San Diego, operating at Gillespie airfield in El Cajon.

I had a great time there and no complaints at all about the school/staff/instructors. But that was two years ago, and who knows, perhaps they are training twice as many there now, and there are never planes for hire. Give them a call and check it out!
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Old 5th Jan 2012, 14:32
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Join Date: Oct 2002
Location: waterskiing 2 miles behind the ac...
Posts: 14
The owners, Andy Burr and Chris Watson, were recently prosecuted for their creative interpretation of US visa laws...does anyone know if they got sent down? I can't see any more than their trial on google.
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Old 5th Jan 2012, 14:49
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Join Date: Oct 2005
Location: Londinium, UK
Age: 47
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I did my flight training there as well. Chris and Andy were both solid guys, as were my flight instructors. A quick gogo showed this was the result of the trial; Incidentally my Visa application was processed to the letter of the law.

Anglo-American Aviation Inc operated from 2001-2008 and hired 11 illegal immigrants as flight instructors during that period.
In 2007, the FAA revoked Anglo American's 141 certificate to train commercial pilots. After the certificate was revoked, Anglo American continued to solicit foreign students and issued illegal visa documents to more than 100 foreign students.
On May 20, 2010, Andrew Burr and Christopher Watson, the former President and Vice President of Anglo-American Aviation pleaded guilty to misdemeanor counts of hiring unauthorized workers.
Burr and Watson were sentenced to five years probation and the flight school must forfeit $250,000 in illegal profits.
Anglo-American Aviation also pleaded guilty to felony charges of making false statements and issuing false visa documents.
The company now is operating under a different name, American Aviation Academy.
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Old 6th Jan 2012, 07:01
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Join Date: Mar 2009
Location: Spain
Posts: 13
Old news

Ok, ok, go easy on the big letters, my friend! You are right there were some visa issues, but FAA basically forced the previous owners to sell, and so since 2008 (approx) there is new management and new owners. Nothing to be afraid of.
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Old 6th Jan 2012, 13:26
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Join Date: May 2010
Location: Around and about
Age: 30
Posts: 83
Mountain Flying

I've had a look at the US sectional charts and the whole place seems surrounded by high intimidating to the C172 mountains. I'd like to visit some of the high Altitude Airports in March. Is the possible in the C172 giving the icing conditions? And need for Oxygen above 10,000ft.

Moutain flying does look very fun but also quite dangerous especially if you don't know the area. The airspace also looks quite congested compared to somewhere like Florida.

If anyone has any experience that would be great.
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Old 6th Jan 2012, 15:30
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Join Date: May 2006
Location: Craggy Island....the west is best
Posts: 118
I did my PPL there...great place to one stage I was cruising at 10,000ft in a piper arrow and a 747 climbed past me...awesome sight for a student with 45hrs!!! Terrain wasn't much of an issue.... valuable lessons in density altitude during the summer. No need for oxygen. Lots of interesting Desert flying...check out Borrego and Thermal, and the pilots jaccuzzi in Palm Springs. Also The San Andres fault which runs through Salten Sea.....

....happy times

P.S. Hire a Piper.... much more fun!!!!

Last edited by 3bars; 7th Jan 2012 at 00:37.
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Old 6th Jan 2012, 17:12
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Join Date: May 2010
Location: Around and about
Age: 30
Posts: 83
Terrian CA, USA

3bars thanks for the reply. Terrian isnt an issue within the PPL parameters but when you wanna do a 500nm cross country you can see there are loads of mountains; even 10k wont be enough to go that far without some proper mountain flying.
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Old 7th Jan 2012, 00:37
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Join Date: May 2006
Location: Craggy Island....the west is best
Posts: 118
It's quite easy to avoid terrain over there... heading east to the desert...relatively flat terrain and easily cover a 500nm cross country with many airports to drop into on the way.

I did make it to 12000ft after completing my PPL to climb over some of the mountains but its fairly normal over there to fly at such's only in the UK that we hug the ground!!! ;-)

Its been a few years, but any questions, feel free to PM me
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Old 7th Jan 2012, 02:08
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Join Date: Jun 2002
Location: Asia
Age: 70
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Spent 2 happy years flying out of Gillespie in the mid 80s. As others have said, some great places to go . Borrego Springs and Havasu were amongst my favorites. Mountains and deserts along the way (and far better in a Cessna cos the views are spectacular!!)
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Old 14th Jan 2012, 16:28
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Join Date: Aug 2007
Location: Mare Nostrum
Age: 37
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Also ask if you have to purchase your own renter's insurance.
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Old 14th Jan 2012, 22:56
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Join Date: Sep 2011
Location: Los Angeles
Posts: 372
I'd like to visit some of the high Altitude Airports in March. Is the possible in the C172 giving the icing conditions? And need for Oxygen above 10,000ft.]
I wouldn't worry too much about icing conditions but rather the density altitude. Even in March we can get 90 degree day temps and you can work out what the likely DA will be for somewhere like Big Bear at 7500'
Gomrath is offline  
Old 17th Jan 2012, 15:39
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Join Date: Sep 2005
Location: Midlands
Posts: 326
I flew 125+ hrs in SD in the summer 2007, based at Plus One Flyers at Montgomery. Had a PA-28 pretty much to myself for the five weeks I was there and had a ball. Flew to Las Vegas (Henderson Exec), Palm Springs, Santa Monica (straight over LAX at 2500ft via the VFR corridor), Santa Monica and San Fran (amongst numerous other places). I'd probably go at a different time of year if I did it again - I went in July/Aug and it was extremely hot and turbulent - but I wouldn't have missed it for the world. Best ever flying - ever!

Dave Somebody-or-other was the Ops guys at Plus One. I actually arranged the aircraft hire through the owner via the +1 website. You'll need to a FAA ticket (involving FAA docs and a straightforward checkride) - the CAA website provides all the details on what to do.

Hope this helps. Have fun!

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