Monday, February 28, 2005

Not Minimums, but IFC all the same

It has been a while since I last posted. I try to post the same day as a flight, but I've been busy.

On one of my lessons a month or so ago, I had the opportuntity to fly in actual instrument conditions rather than under the hood. For any readers (if there are any readers) who haven't taken instrument training, the hood is a device like a big visor that you wear when taking an instrument lesson that blocks out the view through the windows. This forces you to fly by using the instruments only and prevents visual cues from affecting your flight. There area also devices called foggles that are like safety glasses that have most of their area blocked.

For this particular lesson, I filed an instrument flight plan where we simply took off, climbed to 3000 feet and then entered the holding pattern over the CRG VOR. that kept us in an out of clouds for a while. We then went south to the BEABE intersection and held there for a while. Then we did a VOR approach...I don't remember which runway, but I'm pretty certain it was runway 5.

Through most of the approach, we were in cloud. The MDA for this approach was 460' (420AGL) and we broke out of the clouds at about 800'. Tracking the VOR is not as precise as tracking an ILS, but with the needle centered, I found that we were right on target and I made a nice soft field landing.

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