Fly a Helicopter
Whatís it like to fly a helicopter? Why not have a go? You can have a trial flying lesson with one of our experienced flying instructors and experience the incredible sensation of flying a helicopter. Itís a fabulous experience and counts towards your flight training if you wanted to become a helicopter pilot at a later date.
Your flying lesson will take place in a Robinson Helicopter. An R22 is a two-seater training helicopter and is ideal if just you and your instructor want to fly. If you want to bring a friend along youíll want a lesson in a bigger R44 Helicopter.
After a warm welcome at Heliflight you be greeted by your instructor. The lesson begins with a pre-flight briefing that covers safety, a brief overview of how a helicopter flies and what youíll be doing on the flight. Youíll also decide where you would like to go. Perhaps you might want to fly over your house?
Now youíll walk with your instructor to the helicopter, sat waiting on the helipad. Youíll sit in the captainís seat on the right and be introduced to the controls. Donít panic you wonít be expected to fly it just yet. Your instructor will explain the controls to you. The cyclic is for turning and accelerating, the collective for ascending and descending and the pedals for balance and direction. Your instructor will also talk to you about the instruments in the helicopter and what they tell you.
With your safety belt on sit back and relax as your instructor starts the helicopterís engine and makes some pre-flight checks. Youíll watch the rotor blades begin to turn, getting increasingly faster. Then you put your headset on so you can talk with your instructor while you fly.
Next is the defining moment that keeps helicopter pilots coming back time after time. Vertical take-off and hovering. Suspended in the air, five foot off the ground, is a magical experience guaranteed to make you smile.
Your instructor will fly the helicopter across the airfield climbing gently while you get a feel for being in this exciting aircraft. Once away from the airfield youíll be invited to have a go. There is no pressure and you can hand back control at any time, so itís worth having a try. Flying the helicopter straight and level sounds easy, but it takes skill. With a little patience youíll soon be flying along happily, truly exhilarating. Your instructor is on hand to assist when needed.
When you come back to the airfield youíll get an opportunity to impress your friends and relatives watching on the ground as you prepare to hover. While it looks simple it isnít, it needs a great deal of co-ordination and anticipation to fly over one spot without going up or down. Itís time to have try, remember your instructor is there to help out, so enjoy the experience.
After your lesson there is a de-brief with your instructor in the lounge and youíll be presented with a certificate to mark your first steps into the world of flying helicopters.
Remember to bring a camera, taking photographs is positively encouraged. Itís also worthwhile wearing comfortable cloths. On sunny days the cockpit can get quite warm and a peaked baseball hat is essential headwear to get the best views when flying the helicopter.
You can book a trial flying lesson for 30 minutes, 45 minutes or an hour. This is from the moment the engine is turned on to the moment it is turned off. If you are booking an hour the total experience is likely to last 2 hours with the pre-flight briefing, de-briefing and photographic opportunities.