Friday, August 28, 2009


Today we did a VOR approach to Big Lake and some holds... (picture gets big if you click on it...)

Holding isn't "hard", but figuring out how to get into the hold (depends on which way you're coming from) can be. And you're fully engaged - you have to turn and time every minute so there's not really time to divert your attention.

One thing it took me a while to understand is when they tell you: "Hold Southwest of the VOR", they mean that the inbound course is SW of the VOR. I was confused for quite a while trying to keep the entire hold circuit on that side of the VOR (which in this case it is because I'm turning left, if I was making standard right turns it wouldn't be). Confused? Welcome to the club!

I didn't turn the GPS on until inbound on the procedure turn, so you see from the top left I was on course to the VOR and then flew the missed when about a mile from the airport. I got a little wonky flying back to the VOR... My instructor wants me to go direct to the VOR (as published) and I always want to intercept the outbound radial on the way, which is wrong but that's where we're going in the end anyway... lol. You can see where I was set up for the intercept when she said; "Where are you going?" so I turned right a bit and missed the fix. :-(

Then the holds mostly look pretty good. The last one we were looking for traffic and deciding what to do next while I wandered about, so it doesn't count, :-)

What I'm glad to see here is that I'm really not too far off - even the sloppy missed route back to the VOR is only off by 1/2 mile. So with a little more practice I should be able to stay on track.

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