couple years after that first exposure
to the sport, I looked back and realized that the poor guy with the
Weedhopper was trying to do an
impossible juggling act—keep me as a
potential customer while not letting
me get anywhere near a place where I
would see actual ultralights flying.
Only his competitors’ machines
would be there (which was pretty
much exactly what happened).
According to the local ultralight
grapevine, there had been no
Weedhoppers or Goldwings flying, at
that point, around these parts. Well,
there had been one Weedhopper
around, but its pilot somehow
steered it into a tree alongside a
grass-strip runway and it lodged
there, 20 feet up. He climbed down
unharmed, but a cherry picker had to
be brought in, leaving tracks across
the runway, to pluck the thing out of
the tree. The airport manager then
banned all ultralights from flying at
his airport, using phrases like
“bunch of morons” and “never
again.” Fortunately, he relented after
a year or two, and ultralight and
light-sport aircraft are among the
most frequent, and welcome, visitors
to that airport today.
A fairly straight line, with a few
meanderings, leads from that time to
this. I soon graduated to a two-seat
Quicksilver MX and the instructor’s
ticket to go with it, and then a private
pilot certificate and ownership of certificated aircraft. I flew everything I
could get my hands on, from helicopters to warbirds, and even a B-17G for
about 20 glorious minutes. I did some
skydiving and even got in some high-g
air-combat maneuvering in practice
dogfights in high-performance aircraft. It has been a wild ride.
That’s what happens when you
leave the nest.
Its not just the crystal clear synthetic vision, the comprehensive autopilot
coupling, vertical steering, flight director, or hundreds of other details that
makes GRT Avionics the perfect choice for IFR flight. It is the confidence that
comes from hundreds of thousands of hours of proven performance.
Designed by experienced aerospace engineers. IFR proven. Expect nothing
less from GRT.
Graphical Engine Monitor with EGT history
Dual AHRS - Auto-cross check. No degradation with loss of an AHRS; no
need to revert to partial panel backup.
Synthetic Approach with highway-in-the-sky to any runway
Extensive Lateral and Vertical autopilot coupling expands autopilot
XM Weather, TIS Traffic, Stormscope, ADS-B,
and much more...
8 serial ports in/out, 8/14 analog inputs/outputs, ARINC 429 for today and
built-in growth for tomorrow.
Primary Flight Display with synthetic vision
Moving Map with shaded relief terrain
Dave Matheny, EAA 184186, is a private pilot and
an FAA ground instructor. He has been flying light
aircraft, including ultralights, for almost 30 years. He
can be reached at