XC To Pinehurst Again.. Auto Pilot and Being Ignored by ATC

The weather really sucks for flying this time of year… I’ve had to cancel four scheduled times in a row because of either storms in the afternoon or very poor visibility in the morning and at night. So it was nice to get back in the air today for another short cross country flight to Pinehurst. At this point I’m just trying to build some XC time.. so I can then start the instrument instruction… but I’m also building confidence in the Archer. This time out.. I made use of the auto pilot for most of the trip and was able to shave time off compared to hand flying the last time. I tried to get flight following.. but I was pretty much ignored by ATC.. Charlotte kept telling me to ‘stand by’ on my initial call on the way out… and Fayetteville terminated following after just a few minutes on the way back. Still.. it was useful to monitor those frequencies.. even if they were not talking to me.. I could hear the guys they were talking to… telling them about traffic that was sometimes me. I had the new experience of being passed directly overhead by small single going much faster than I was… he was in the clouds and less than 1000′ above me.. but I heard him taking to ATC so I knew he was there.. and knew he saw me… still was a weird feeling though. I had to stay at around 2k’ for both flights.. it was hazy and the cloud base was only about 2500′ with no horizon again. Not the best of conditions.. but I’ll take what I can get.

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