Clearance in the air

Discussion in 'Cleared for the Approach' started by Adam Weiss, Nov 4, 2019.

  1. Adam Weiss

    Adam Weiss Pre-takeoff checklist

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    On a return trip, and first time flying out of KGKT, called to pick up clearance. It was extreme VMC. Airport was super busy, as was Knoxville airspace, and a had a line forming behind me while waiting for clearance.

    Do you guys typically just depart VFR, and pick up in the air? Seems like that would have been smarter.

    Also, the A/FD gave a phone number to call for CD, but calling they just had me call up on departure freq. How would I have known to use that frequency if I had wanted to pick up my clearance in the air?
     
  2. sarangan

    sarangan Line Up and Wait

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    I would have departed VFR and called the approach frequency listed in the instrument approach chart for the airport.
     
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  3. James331

    James331 Touchdown! Greaser!

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    Yes.

    If it’s clear blue and 22 I might not even bother with the IFR shy of needing FL180 or higher.
     
  4. FORANE

    FORANE Pattern Altitude

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    https://aeronav.faa.gov/d-tpp/1911/06006R10.PDF

    I would have departed VFR unless expecting a clearance different than filed, or expecting to need the clearance shortly after takeoff.
    In the air, I call the local approach - in this case, 132.8.
     
  5. midlifeflyer

    midlifeflyer Touchdown! Greaser!

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    On a clear day like this, like the others, I would probably pick up in the air, unless I was going west. You are about 20nm away and, that pretty close and if it's busy and I want an IFR clearance, I'd prefer to get it in the ground if heading directly toward a B or C.

    On the frequency, it is going to be the TRACON frequency for your departure. That has a number of sources for you. The approach plate. The AFD. If you are using a GPS, on the airport info page. If using an EFB, the airport/com page/tab. You could, of course, also use the frequency on the sectional. Doesn't matter if it's the "wrong" one. Pilots seem to fret about this, but there really isn't any "wrong" one.

    But this in your post...

    ... has me wondering about something. Are you saying you called Knoxville on the phone and they told you to call the frequency? Unless they said, "in the air," that suggests you can reach TRACON by radio on the ground. I would have tried that. There are definitely areas where that is the case and it is not something always published. Anyone where familiar with the area?
     
  6. coma24

    coma24 Line Up and Wait

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    The phone number is used if you want to obtain your clearance on the ground. If you want to pick up your clearance in the air, you need to speak with the controller who is working that airspace (ie, the person providing IFR separation for that piece of sky). Clearly, that would be the approach frequency listed for the airport in the communications data block of the AF/D entry. As others have suggested, you can also get it from the instrument approach plate.
     
  7. Adam Weiss

    Adam Weiss Pre-takeoff checklist

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    That is exactly why happened. I called them in the phone, and they said just to call them up on the ground on frequency (132.8), which I did.

    I was headed west, but I could have avoided the class C if needed.

    Thanks to all...I learned something.
     
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  8. rocketflyer84

    rocketflyer84 Line Up and Wait

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    Depends on the airspace. Called in the air once with NY TRACON from a satellite airport on a clear and a million day and got an earful. In general though if you can safely depart it’s a good option to have.
     
  9. jordane93

    jordane93 Final Approach

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    Depends on the airspace. In Long Island, if you tried to pick up in the air, you’d be yelled at even if it’s severe VMC.
     
  10. Mark Hunter

    Mark Hunter Filing Flight Plan

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    Try filing on your ForeFlight from a specific vor and the controller will be expecting you. Leave vfr and estimate the time you’ll be over the vor
     
  11. ahypnoz

    ahypnoz Pre-takeoff checklist

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    Mark, I was wondering if It would be better to file from a specific fix in ForeFlight instead of a VOR. Many more choices. Has anyone routinely done this?
     
  12. Mark Hunter

    Mark Hunter Filing Flight Plan

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    I routinely do this out of the San Francisco area. An intersection works as well. The controller wants you on a victor airway and Once in the system it is easy to ask for more gps direct routes. Ask to go to the FAF fix direct
     
  13. Velocity173

    Velocity173 Touchdown! Greaser! PoA Supporter

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    The controller is already expecting you based on your departure field. The computer recognizes the airport within their airspace and prints out a strip 30 minutes prior to ETD.
     
  14. PaulS

    PaulS Final Approach

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    Pull off to the side, pick up your clearance, either you'll get a void time or they'll tell you to call when you are number one. I'd be ticked if you called for your clearance while blocking the entrance to the runway.
     
  15. Adam Weiss

    Adam Weiss Pre-takeoff checklist

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    In this case, I received my clearance, but was told to standby. Then it got really busy, and it was 10 min before void time was given. I was able to let others slip by while waiting.
     
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  16. frfly172

    frfly172 Touchdown! Greaser! PoA Supporter

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    If you’re going to pick up in the air ,be sure you can maintain VFR while wIting for your clearance.
     
  17. Palmpilot

    Palmpilot Touchdown! Greaser!

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  18. bkspero

    bkspero Pre-takeoff checklist

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    One caution here. I had an experience about 3 years ago when filing from a nearby VOR (RBV) for air pickup. Before taking off I called the responsible RAPCON and they did not have a record of my flight plan. So I refiled, waited a while, and called them again...still no flight plan. After flying the flight VFR, I checked my emails and found a notification from Flightaware that two flight plans had been filed for my airplane departing Ramata, RBV, airport in the Solomon Islands, south Pacific (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ramata_Airport). Was surprised that the computer didn't catch the implausibility of my Tiger flying the 7400 nm between those two spots, but it didn't.

    I later corresponded with an author on IFR Refresher magazine and she confirmed that this can happen. The fix was (still is?) to file from a location off the VOR. In my case, when I want to file off the RBV VOR, I file from a spot on the 270 radial at 1 nm (RBV270001). Has worked.
     
  19. Radar Contact

    Radar Contact Pattern Altitude

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    I don’t pretend to have the best answer. I will say, as a controller I prefer them to be filed off airports (much easier/quicker for a terminal controller). When I’m flying I’ll regularly file off an airport, depart VFR to get direct and then pick it up off the planned airport airborne when away from the busy airspace.
     
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  20. ahypnoz

    ahypnoz Pre-takeoff checklist

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    That make sense