Unusual college classes, Ohio Today Magazine

Pilot Sam Trost plans for a “cross-country” training flight from Ohio University’s airport in Albany, Ohio, to Huntington, WV.

Way back in November, 2011, I got an assignment from Ohio Today magazine to photograph a student pilot for their story on unusual courses at Ohio University. I’d been to the airport several times before for work with the engineering school, but I hadn’t had a chance to actually fly until now.

I photographed pilot Sam Trost as he prepared for his “cross country” flight from Albany, Ohio, to Huntington, West Virginia, and back. (While calculating fuel needs he asked me how much I weighed, which was bad enough, but then I had to point out that my gear probably added 30% to my weight).

Sam Trost (student, pilot) and Cory Lombard (instructor), Beechcraft Baron B55 twin-engine plane. Flight from Ohio University airport in Albany, Ohio, to Huntington, WV, and back.
“I’ve never flown through snow before!”
“Dont be embarrassed…even veteran air travelers are subject to occasional motion sickness.” Yeah, right. These barf bags look like they date from the 50’s, and I wasn’t about to be the first person in 60 years to need one.
Huntington, WV. Sam Trost (student, pilot) and Cory Lombard (instructor), Beechcraft Baron B55 twin-engine plane. Flight from Ohio University airport in Albany, Ohio, to Huntington, WV, and back.
Pilot Sam Trost uses an opaque hood to block his vision out the window, allowing him only to see the instruments in the cockpit as he trains to use and trust those instruments during flight. Fortunately for my sanity he removed the visor shortly before actually landing in Huntington, WV.

The flight was an absolute blast. We had brilliant sun, heavy clouds, snow, rainbows (snow-bows?), and some high-bank turns that made me grin like a school boy (and the g-forces kinda cemented the goofy grin.

I had heard we’d be in the air for over four hours, so initially I was disappointed that we were only flying to Huntington and back, but after an hour and a half of turbulent flight in a tiny plane as seen through a camera’s viewfinder my stomach was more than ready to be on terra firma.

Read the entire Ohio Today story here.

Fast forward a couple of months and Ohio Today called me back to photograph a “Silent Get-a-Way” weekend for American Sign Language students.

Read the Ohio Today story here.

Leave a Reply