Having long hungered to learn to fly, I’m surprised I waited until now to go hunting for aviation-enthusiast podcasts. I don’t think the thought even occurred to me that something in that genre might exist — which, in hindsight, was completely silly.

I don’t remember what prompted me to look yesterday, but the iTunes search I did immediately turned up three absolute gems that I have to recommend to anyone interested in this stuff:

First, check out this 14-minute Airspeed video episode, shot from 3 angles, of pilot Steve Tupper practicing recovery from stalls and spins with instructor Barry Sutton providing guidance from the back seat. It’s educational, inspiring, and made of awesome. As I tweeted this morning: Why waste time watching TV when I can sit in the cockpit with a pilot practicing stalls & spins?

picture of Steve and Barry in cockpit

Next, I had the great pleasure of listening to Steve’s 2007 “Why I Fly” episode, which is beautiful, inspired, true to everything I’ve felt compels me to seek to become a pilot, and something I’m sure Bill Whittle would delight in too. (For me it’s reminiscent of — and, impressively, on par with — Bill’s great & inspired writing on the subject. — See, for example, Bill’s unmissable 2003 essay “Courage”.)

Finally, I wrapped up last night’s bout of insomnia with an Uncontrolled Airspace interview, in which pilot and instructor Amy Laboda recounted the 2001 experience of having to ditch her Cessna 210, following total engine failure in a turn at 1500 ft., in the water off Key West. Again, amazing and deeply educational, and an invaluable opportunity to learn from another pilot’s experience and wisdom.

After being rewarded with such great content on my first foray into aviation podcasts, I’m sure to continue listening and looking for more podcasts to try. And I’m feeling newly inspired to pick up the books and do all the learning I can in the moments I can make for it. I’ve more or less put the dream on hold since becoming a parent a year and a half ago, but I’m determined I’m going to get there someday. I will not give up!