BubbleBoy wrote: ↑
Thu Aug 03, 2017 8:05 pm
Pilots love to fly. Great pilots love to take off and land.
We at Big Walker Mountain (near Bland, Va), mostly land on a hill about as steep as the one shown in the vid, although only a hill. The landing approach view is very much the same... a wall. It pays big dividends to have a steep final approach with lots of airspeed and a smooth rotation onto the steep incline. We typically land in 90 deg. crosswinds and sometimes tailwinds, though the other nearby hills, sink-holes, and trees provide plenty of turb. The steep hill provides the easiest landing option available within the LZ. Once a pilot understands that a very steep approach with lots of airspeed is his/her best friend, the up-hill landings are a piece of cake in nearly any condition. That wall at the proper high airspeed (especially downwind) is quite intimidating at first, though.
I've noticed that my hands are lower on the DT's on these hill landings compared to landing on flat LZ's, just as this pilot has. Likely because it seems that there is practically no time to slide the hands up all the way while transitioning from rotation to flare. The two phases become one motion on a steep hill side. Perhaps even more airspeed would help with that. Although, one local 'old crow' pilot, Tommy Thompson, makes these up-hill landings look super-easy, silky-smooth, and absolutely perfect every single time. And he gets his hand up high just after his rotation. Could be his ship. Yeah, that's it.
After landing, I always ponder about turning around and relaunching to get back to the break-down area faster, which is a good +100 yrd walk. Always glad I didn't, though. Too much turb from obstructions and hills.
I wish there were some flat areas around here to practice level-ground landings on. A guy can get real lazy with all the easy up-hill landings!