Tactics! Some say it is the most fun that you will have in Helo Advanced. Personally, I enjoyed the aerobatics and form flights of Primary, but the Tactics flights were definitely the coolest flights in the Helo to date.
"This block is to introduce you to all the cool things helicopters can do, don't worry... you won't be really good at it." -LT Ahlen
I guess that kind of sums it up. In this block of training you fly High-Speed Approaches, Confined Area Landings, and External Ops. They take the doors (the rear doors) off the helo and 2 of the 3 flights you fly with a crewman in the back. I got to catch a ride to one of our outlying sites and sit in the back with the doors off. That is probably one of the more enjoyable experiences in my Naval Career so far. (I wish I was allowed to have taken pictures of that) I am kind of jealous of the guys that get to do it all of the time. This block of training starts with the student and the instructor taking the bird out to an outlying field to practice flying into the field at 100 knots, 50 feet, then almost taking out all power and pulling aft stick to slow down to almost a walking speed and land. It was pretty awesome. (a normal approach has the helo at 50 knots at the field boundary at 150 feet) The Confined Area Landings are completed on the next flight, and are basically a steep approach into a wooded area that has a landing site. The crewman in the back directs you and clears the rear of the aircraft. The last day is external load training... kind of benign, but it was still enjoyable and good training. I was able to shoot a little video of our instructor (LT Gomez) demoing the maneuver before I got a shot at it, and in one of the videos a couple sections (group of 2) came in to split the field and land. Enjoy the video and pics... I'll have more up soon!