Flight Training - July 2020 - 18

PREFLIGHT WEATHER

BY IAN J. TWOMBLY

LIFE EXISTS IN GRAY AREAS
MAKING CHALLENGING WEATHER DECISIONS
TWO THINGS MAKE NAVIGATING

weather a challenge. It is ever-changing,
and conditions often exist in a gray area
between beautiful and hostile. In other
words, making the decision of whether to
go is not often clear.
You've spent the past few days at your
parents' house and now your wife and
kids are ready to get home. The Diamond
DA40 you flew up to your weekend away
is well equipped with a Garmin G1000
integrated glass panel with satellite
weather in the cockpit, but no stormscope
or radar. It's summer, and you know that
means afternoon thunderstorms. Your

flight is about 200 miles, first across high
rolling hills and national forests, and then
lower farmland.
You check the weather and it's perfect
at the departure and destination, but you
notice some moderate rain with convective potential just to the south of your
departure and extending for about 30
miles. Then you get to the airplane and
realize the satellite and ADS-B weather
datalinks aren't working. It's midafternoon, and the sun will set in about three
hours.
Oh, and in the bad old days before
cheap in-cockpit weather, you had to stop

and stay overnight along this exact route
with similar conditions. Do you:
1. Ignore history, get an updated radar
picture just prior to takeoff, use ATC for
assistance, and try and skirt around the
weather?
2. Wait for the cells to hopefully pass,
knowing that if they don't you have spent
your entire day waiting, hoping to go,
with no guarantee of improving weather?
3. Rent a car and drive with a plan to
pick up the airplane later?
4. Call the parents and tell them not to
strip those sheets just yet. You'll try again
tomorrow.

NIGHT IS
ALL RIGHT

TOMORROW IS
ANOTHER DAY

I have rolled the dice with thunderstorms in the past and I've occasionally
found myself in a situation where I was
wishing I was on the ground, so without satellite weather I'm not taking
any chances. I know I don't want to
put my family at risk, so that's an added
incentive to stay put. If I'm current and
comfortable with night flying, I'd wait until
the storm passes and then depart. Otherwise, however, I'd
probably put off launching until the next day.
	
-Jill W. Tallman, instrument-rated private pilot

This scenario presents some of the
realistic decisions we face as pilots. History
tells me I should be wary of this route,
and I know I've come to rely on in-flight
weather for radar information. Yet my
family is telling me it's time to go, so I feel
pressure to at least take off and take a better
look. And obviously thunderstorms are not to
be trifled with, but it's not terribly difficult to skirt large areas
visually and with ATC assistance. Regardless, I think I'll wait
this one out and try again tomorrow. Maybe in the meantime I
can troubleshoot the satellite weather in case something pops up
tomorrow. A long reroute is possible, but that would put us landing after dark, which I don't want to do. -Ian J. Twombly, CFI

18  FLIGHT TRAINING JULY 2020



Flight Training - July 2020

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Flight Training - July 2020

Contents
Flight Training - July 2020 - Intro
Flight Training - July 2020 - Cover1
Flight Training - July 2020 - Cover2
Flight Training - July 2020 - Contents
Flight Training - July 2020 - 2
Flight Training - July 2020 - 3
Flight Training - July 2020 - 4
Flight Training - July 2020 - 5
Flight Training - July 2020 - 6
Flight Training - July 2020 - 7
Flight Training - July 2020 - 8
Flight Training - July 2020 - 9
Flight Training - July 2020 - 10
Flight Training - July 2020 - 11
Flight Training - July 2020 - 12
Flight Training - July 2020 - 13
Flight Training - July 2020 - 14
Flight Training - July 2020 - 15
Flight Training - July 2020 - 16
Flight Training - July 2020 - 17
Flight Training - July 2020 - 18
Flight Training - July 2020 - 19
Flight Training - July 2020 - 20
Flight Training - July 2020 - 21
Flight Training - July 2020 - 22
Flight Training - July 2020 - 23
Flight Training - July 2020 - 24
Flight Training - July 2020 - 25
Flight Training - July 2020 - 26
Flight Training - July 2020 - 27
Flight Training - July 2020 - 28
Flight Training - July 2020 - 29
Flight Training - July 2020 - 30
Flight Training - July 2020 - 31
Flight Training - July 2020 - 32
Flight Training - July 2020 - 33
Flight Training - July 2020 - 34
Flight Training - July 2020 - 35
Flight Training - July 2020 - 36
Flight Training - July 2020 - 37
Flight Training - July 2020 - 38
Flight Training - July 2020 - 39
Flight Training - July 2020 - 40
Flight Training - July 2020 - 41
Flight Training - July 2020 - 42
Flight Training - July 2020 - 43
Flight Training - July 2020 - 44
Flight Training - July 2020 - 45
Flight Training - July 2020 - 46
Flight Training - July 2020 - 47
Flight Training - July 2020 - 48
Flight Training - July 2020 - 49
Flight Training - July 2020 - 50
Flight Training - July 2020 - 51
Flight Training - July 2020 - 52
Flight Training - July 2020 - 53
Flight Training - July 2020 - 54
Flight Training - July 2020 - 55
Flight Training - July 2020 - 56
Flight Training - July 2020 - Cover3
Flight Training - July 2020 - Cover4
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