I have not been an active flyer for a few years, and new technology has replaced the way I used to plan my flights. What are some of the better flight planning programs I can try?


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Being at the opposite end of the country, I doubt that I ever will fly that infamous corridor, but if I do, I will want to be on flight following--if it's available. At least the 701/750 will turn tightly, but that dead-end is unfortunately aptly named. Just be sure the crosswind speeds are much lower than the airspeed so you won't be blown into those skyscrapers . . .


I use both Paper Charts and an iPad. 

Lines are drawn on a Paper Chart when planning the flight, and then that chart is given to my passenger.  Keeps the passenger engaged by allowing them to "follow along".

During the flight I strap an iPad to my left thigh, and typically keep it in sleep mode (otherwise it'll overheat).  I only turn it on when I want to get a "fix" on my location, or when I'm near an airport.

Also, I use a 3x5 notecard upon which I write summarized info like Estimated Times Enroute, Freq's, runway directions, etc, and I attach this notecard to a clip mounted on my panel.  Very handy.

- Pat

When I first got my license back in the seventies I only had a VOR and a compass. I used a chart to plan my CC and wrote each checkpoint down on a 3x5 card. I just had the wife pick  up some 3x5 cards the other day. I would place a rubber band around the stack and just reverse them on the return trip. The plane I just bought has a Garmin 250 XL comm vor and gps all in one. So many things have changed, airspace is completely different so will take me some time to get use to that. I love the gps in the car, so hope it will also be as useful in the cockpit. I will use the old and the new. I like being able to plan my trips the night before and the ease of changing things with a click. Sectionals are a little harder to erase a line. Looking forward to making some CC and just plain pleasure flights again. Thanks for all the inputs, I will check them all out.


I believe that much of our use of technology is backwards. I'm in favor of cars that are smart enough to save me from doing something stupid, but I'm not in favor of being out of practice and having to take over when the electronics fail. That goes triple for airplanes. Anti-collision equipment is good, as are stick-shakers and automatic landing capabilities, but I think it's a mistake to put all our eggs in the technology basket. I fly for the fun of it, not to be, and J. Frank Dobie put it, ". . . just being transported."

I guess I'm lucky, I'm building two planes, one mainly for transportation, the 601, and one for just punching holes in the sky, a Kitfox. Just being transported when your grand kinds are a two days drive away, or just a few hours flying is not entirely a bad thing. In either case safety is key, and it all come down to pilot awareness before, during and after the flight. I have never flown, either for just the sheer enjoyment, or a CC,  without trying my level best to know exactly where I'm at, how much fuel the engine is burning and is still on board, and the best place to make an emergency  or off field landing.  I try to always pick out land marks such as an Interstate, a river, power lines RR,  or major city. Then if I spot them I know I'm either on or off coarse.In other words I just don't pick certain way points along my planned route, but rather checkpoints that if I cross that highway, river, etc then I made an error some place.  A current chart is always within sight and reach for the entire flight.  What ever you use, modern technology, or just plain solid Visual references , use them to your advantage and you have planned for a successful flight. I just wanted to know what some of the current pilots are using, and are happy with.


There's no flight following but there's a common freq and mandatory reporting points so everybody can keep up with where the others are. sort of.

and no dead end...we flew all the way up to West Point before turning around and coming back down thru the corridor again.

The corridor is a no sweat flight. very easy and well designed.

I stand corrected.

From Wikipedia: "The NTSB's final hearing on May 1, 2007 determined that "the pilots’ inadequate planning, judgment, and airmanship in the performance of a 180-degree turn maneuver inside of a limited turning space" caused the crash.[30] The investigation was unable to determine whether Lidle or Stanger was at the controls. Although there was 2,100 feet (640 m) of space available, the aircraft used only about 1,700 feet (520 m) of width in which to make the 180-degree turn—but this distance was effectively reduced to 1,300 feet (400 m) by the 13-knot (24 km/h) easterly winds that day. A bank angle of at least 53 degrees would be required to successfully execute a 180-degree turn in this distance. If the required bank was not initiated early then, as the turn progressed, the bank angle would have needed to have been increased, possibly resulting in an aerodynamic stall. The investigation was unable to determine if the plane was stalled at the time of the crash. An animation of the flight path combining radar data with a Coast Guard video of the East River was also presented.[10][31][32][33]"

Has the corridor been extended or did you have ATC clearance?


Apparently, I also stand corrected on the location of the cited accident--the East River corridor, not the Hudson.



Wayne if you want detailed info on the Hudson corridor I suggest you google a bit there's lots of online info

I'm not sure what you're saying with the accident report...it's irrelevant to the 701 and the Hudson(and probably the East River but I haven't studied or flown that). It's more relevant to PIC incompetency.

Like I said, flying the Hudson is no sweat, especially in a 701.

Wayne - I believe you and I are in agreement that the pilot must be sure we have briefed the flight, using what ever means we like best, and then make sure we fly safely.  I have had electronics fail -  that is why I have backups on different platforms.  

Different flights require different levels of flight planning- and different resources.  Glad we have so many different platforms to choose from.  From free internet sites to programs that provide applications and resources for very nominal fees.  

Joe - what an awesome flight going thru the VFR corridor.  Sure wish you would write a separate thread on how you planned the flight, the resources you used, and then a detailed description of the flight.  Where did you start, who did you have to contact, etc.   Sounds like flying thru the belly of the beast - and you did it in a 701.  How cool!




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