According to Part 61, section 109 of the Federal Aviation Regulations (FARs) student pilots must have
3 hours of flight training with an authorized instructor in a single-engine airplane in preparation for the practical test, which must have been performed within the preceding 2 calendar months from the month of the test
The last time I prepared for my checkride, I had to scramble to meet this requirement. After the checkride was scrapped due to weather, over a month went by, putting me back in a situation where I needed 1 more hour of dual instruction to meet the 3 hours total. The day that I heard that the plane was out of maintenance from having the nose wheel replaced, I headed to the airport. My CFI was at the hangar preparing another plane for it’s annual. I was originally planning to do some solo practice during lunch. However, when we starting comparing schedules to get that hour of dual in, we determined that we’d better fly it right then. So I was able to get the dual in and freed up my remaining practice schedule for solo work.
We departed CTJ on runway 35 and headed to the practice area. After climbing to 4,000 feet we worked slow flight and stalls. While still at 4,000, my instructor performed a simulated engine failure. With a little more time than usual, I ran through the emergency checklist flow, picked a nice size field that worked well with the current winds and headed that way.
Following the emergency simulation, we climbed back up to pivotal altitude to work on turns about a point and s-turns. When my instructor was satisfied, we headed back to the airport to work on the various landings I would need to perform on the checkride. I had a few rough ones and a few decent ones, but more importantly uncovered the fact that my landings needed more practice. It had been over a month since I had flown last, and it really showed in my landings. Hopefully, I will have time to squeeze in a few more practice landings before my checkride.