"Climb Via" Question

Discussion in 'Change to my Frequency...' started by Ted DuPuis, Jun 21, 2017.

  1. Ted DuPuis

    Ted DuPuis Administrator Management Council Member

    Joined:
    Oct 9, 2007
    Messages:
    23,187
    Location:
    Paola, KS
    Display Name:

    Display name:
    iBanYou
    I had a question asked of me, and have had someone disagreeing with my answer. So this is a question for the controllers out there.

    Let's say that I'm given a SID with a "Climb Via" instruction. The SID has a point where the altitude for a particular segment is 10,000 ft. I have filed for an en route altitude of 6,000 ft and was cleared to "Expect 6,000 10 minutes after departure", along with the SID, when I received my clearance.

    When I get to a part of the SID where the altitudes are above my filed and cleared altitude, am I expected to maintain 6,000 ft (since that was my filed and cleared en-route altitude) or am I expected to climb to the higher altitude as part of the SID, and then at some point descend to my filed altitude?

    My understanding is that I don't climb above my filed altitude, even if the SID goes higher. A friend of mine disagrees and says that you do climb per the SID above your filed and cleared cruising altitude, and then descend at some later point.

    Of course, in piston birds it will typically be a moot point anyway since the clearances you receive (even if on a SID) normally are radar vectors then to your route (direct/airways/etc.), but I'd like to know what the controllers in the group are expecting.
     
    Last edited: Jun 21, 2017
  2. neilw2

    neilw2 Line Up and Wait

    Joined:
    Nov 23, 2013
    Messages:
    615
    Location:
    MA
    Display Name:

    Display name:
    Neil W
    My guess is they wouldn't give you the climb via without the altitude limit. For example- Climb via xxx SID to 6,000 ft.

    If a controller gave me a SID with a climb requirement above my filed altitude I would query the controller before accepting it.

    Hopefully the real experts will clear it up for us soon and see how close I am
     
    ircphoenix and kayoh190 like this.
  3. jordane93

    jordane93 Final Approach

    Joined:
    Sep 9, 2013
    Messages:
    8,528
    Location:
    Long Island, NY
    Display Name:

    Display name:
    Jordan
    This is what I would expect as well. If the top altitude of the SID is 10 but you only filed for 6, I'd expect to hear, "climb via the SID except maintain 6000."
     
  4. flyingmoose

    flyingmoose Pattern Altitude

    Joined:
    Dec 6, 2011
    Messages:
    1,604
    Location:
    Monroe, Oh
    Display Name:

    Display name:
    Flyingmoose
    Do you have an example SID that this situation could occur?

    I don't think you would ever be issued a climb VIA SID in that situation but if I was then I would just remind the controller of my final alt.
     
  5. Velocity173

    Velocity173 Final Approach

    Joined:
    Jul 3, 2012
    Messages:
    9,578
    Display Name:

    Display name:
    Velocity173
    Exactly what Jordane said. If they are modifying the top altitude of the SID, they're required to state "climb via SID, except maintain 6000."
     
    ircphoenix and Harold Rutila like this.
  6. Ted DuPuis

    Ted DuPuis Administrator Management Council Member

    Joined:
    Oct 9, 2007
    Messages:
    23,187
    Location:
    Paola, KS
    Display Name:

    Display name:
    iBanYou
    So if you've filed for 6,000, the SID has a point that's 10,000 and you don't get "except maintain 6,000", then you're expected to go to 10,000? When do you go back to 6,000?
     
  7. Velocity173

    Velocity173 Final Approach

    Joined:
    Jul 3, 2012
    Messages:
    9,578
    Display Name:

    Display name:
    Velocity173
    I would never accept that clearance without confirming my top altitude. But, if that's what you got, go to 10 and request 6 when the SID ends.
     
    ircphoenix and Harold Rutila like this.
  8. Clark1961

    Clark1961 Touchdown! Greaser!

    Joined:
    Jun 7, 2008
    Messages:
    17,746
    Display Name:

    Display name:
    Display name:
    Just a comment that around here they do give SIDs that aren't just vectors to piston aircraft. No "climb via" 'cause that's a jet thing.

    For folks that are concerned with having to fly a SID, no need for concern just read the description and follow it. The graphical depiction isn't to scale so it can be bothersome for some folks.
     
  9. Harold Rutila

    Harold Rutila Pre-takeoff checklist

    Joined:
    Jan 22, 2016
    Messages:
    420
    Location:
    Dallas, TX
    Display Name:

    Display name:
    Harold Rutila
    Per that clearance, yes. You wouldn't go back down to 6,000 until you get "Descend and maintain 6,000" or some other version of a descent instruction.

    "Climb via SID, expect 6,000 10 minutes after departure," where there is a leg on the SID that goes above 10,000, is not a legitimate clearance in this case. Clearance delivery messed it up. You don't get "expect" clearances that are lower than what your route (the SID) requires.

    "Climb via" phraseology is not just restricted to jets. It can be used anytime there is an altitude mentioned in the description of the SID. Some facilities have resorted to vectoring piston aircraft on departure, enabling them to forego using "climb via" phraseology with piston pilots, but that is not the case everywhere. Southern California facilities use "climb via" with pistons regularly.
     
  10. jordane93

    jordane93 Final Approach

    Joined:
    Sep 9, 2013
    Messages:
    8,528
    Location:
    Long Island, NY
    Display Name:

    Display name:
    Jordan
    Climb via isn't just a jet thing.
     
  11. Clark1961

    Clark1961 Touchdown! Greaser!

    Joined:
    Jun 7, 2008
    Messages:
    17,746
    Display Name:

    Display name:
    Display name:
    Not around here on the climb via stuff which is what I wrote. Also nobody is going to be sending piston aircraft regularly to 10,000' on a SID. On a DP in the mountains, sure, but not a SID.
     
  12. Clark1961

    Clark1961 Touchdown! Greaser!

    Joined:
    Jun 7, 2008
    Messages:
    17,746
    Display Name:

    Display name:
    Display name:
    Nobody around here is giving climb via to piston aircraft. I'll bet they aren't trying to send them to 10,000' where you are either.
     
  13. jordane93

    jordane93 Final Approach

    Joined:
    Sep 9, 2013
    Messages:
    8,528
    Location:
    Long Island, NY
    Display Name:

    Display name:
    Jordan
    The altitude has no bearing whether a climb via is issued. I've gotten climb via's in props as well. Not just a jet thing.
     
  14. midlifeflyer

    midlifeflyer Final Approach

    Joined:
    May 25, 2006
    Messages:
    8,400
    Location:
    Chapel Hill NC
    Display Name:

    Display name:
    Mark
    What kind off altitude? Unless it's an altitude restriction, like 10,000 indicating "must be at or above 10,000", it's irrelevant. Do you have a example of a real situation?
     
  15. bradg33

    bradg33 Cleared for Takeoff

    Joined:
    Aug 27, 2012
    Messages:
    1,281
    Display Name:

    Display name:
    Esquire99
    I've gotten "Climb via the SID" coming out of Colorado Springs a couple of times in my Super Viking. My recollection is that it was "Climb via the SID, except maintain [filed altitude]." Of course, I think I made it all of 3-4 minutes on the SID before I was cleared direct destination, but that's not the point...
     
    ircphoenix likes this.
  16. Clark1961

    Clark1961 Touchdown! Greaser!

    Joined:
    Jun 7, 2008
    Messages:
    17,746
    Display Name:

    Display name:
    Display name:
    If the altitude required is obviously beyond the capabilities of the aircraft then it is quite relevant.
     
  17. MarkZ

    MarkZ En-Route

    Joined:
    May 3, 2013
    Messages:
    2,969
    Location:
    Oswego, IL
    Display Name:

    Display name:
    Mark
    This sounds like a localized issue. Knowing the airport and procedure name would help.


    Sent from my iPad using Tapatalk
     
  18. denverpilot

    denverpilot Taxi to Parking

    Joined:
    Nov 8, 2009
    Messages:
    48,653
    Location:
    Denver, CO
    Display Name:

    Display name:
    DenverPilot
    I've also heard the "except" phraseology. Without it, I'd be asking. They essentially gave you two different altitudes by giving the "climb via" and the "expect" but only one is an actual clearance. In other words, my ears would hear that as a mistake and question it.

    I've gotten a SID once where my aircraft couldn't meet the altitude per NM gradient published on it, and had to reject it, and that's different, but both accepting that or the "climb via" when the aircraft won't do it, is a PIC requirement to say "unable".

    In the case of the climb gradient SID, the controller just changed game plans to "climb and maintain X, radar vectors, Fix, expect Y 10 minutes after departure" and was fine with me rejecting the SID.

    I could have almost made it, but that doesn't count in anything but horseshoes and hand grenades.
     
  19. Radar Contact

    Radar Contact Cleared for Takeoff

    Joined:
    Dec 10, 2016
    Messages:
    1,300
    Location:
    Illinois
    Display Name:

    Display name:
    Kevin
    Ted,

    Clearance in your case messed up. They should have given you, "climb via the SID except maintain 6000" (providing there were no terrain limitations but I'm sure if there were you wouldn't have filed 060).

    I would be willing to bet a lot of money ATC had no desire for you to get to 100 just to descend you back to 060. Clearance Delivery is almost always the first position in a facility someone checks out on and there are a lot of inexperienced people working those positions. In the future I would ask for clarification. To me it would be like clearing you from ORD to ATL via radar vectors to MCI. :)

    If I asked CD and they didn't resolve it, I would clarify with departure on initial contact and I'm almost certain you'd hear just maintain 060. If I went NORDO I personally would stop at 060 because in my opinion, that's what the controller would be expecting. Of course, I don't work at the FSDO.
     
    ircphoenix and Velocity173 like this.
  20. sourdough44

    sourdough44 Cleared for Takeoff

    Joined:
    Feb 20, 2011
    Messages:
    1,282
    Location:
    Wisconsin
    Display Name:

    Display name:
    WI Flyer
    As posted above, I'd clarify before leaving the ground.
     
  21. Dave S.

    Dave S. Pre-takeoff checklist

    Joined:
    Feb 28, 2017
    Messages:
    110
    Display Name:

    Display name:
    thetexan
    It depends on the last instruction out of the controller's mouth. Any "via" instruction is superseded by "maintain" an altitude if that is the last thing said. For example..."5 miles from Alpha, turn right heading 270, maintain 2500 until established on the localizer...cleared for the ILS approach." If he next says "maintain 2700" then you are to maintain 2700 until doomsday which effectively causes a conflict with the flying of the approach you have just been cleared for....clearly something is wrong....probably he means to cancel the approach clearance and maintain 2700 which brings up the problem of which route to fly. Just another example of incomplete, improper, and non-standard phraseology.

    If, after being told to fly via, you later (anytime later, one second or one minute) hear to maintain a fixed altitude then that's the altitude to fly.

    "Climb via the SID except maintain 6000" would not be correct. There is only one place in the rules where "except maintain" is used and that is on a published missed approach. The proper way to say that would be "cleared to Little Rock airport via Forck Two departure. Maintain flight level 230". OR..."Cleared to Little Rock airport climb via the Forck Two departure".

    tex
     
  22. flyingron

    flyingron Touchdown! Greaser!

    Joined:
    Jul 31, 2007
    Messages:
    15,351
    Location:
    Catawba, NC
    Display Name:

    Display name:
    FlyingRon
    I'm still waiting for a real world example where a SID directs you to a minimum altitude that is not one you'd need to be at for some good reason (terrain, MIA) anyhow. Also, typically they don't have to tell you to "Expect filed in 10" when they give you a DP as the DP tells you to expect that.
     
  23. Hacker

    Hacker Pre-takeoff checklist

    Joined:
    Mar 21, 2017
    Messages:
    210
    Location:
    Las Vegas
    Display Name:

    Display name:
    Hacker
    Some of these are for de-confliction of SID and STAR routings.

    One I can think of offhand (although it is the reverse -- a min altitude on the arrival and a max on the departure) is where the CASTA departure and SADDE arrival out at LAX cross.
     
  24. Larry in TN

    Larry in TN Line Up and Wait

    Joined:
    Nov 16, 2013
    Messages:
    981
    Location:
    Nashville, TN
    Display Name:

    Display name:
    Larry in TN
    Maybe I'm misunderstanding what you're trying to say because "Climb via SID, except maintain X,XXX" is used routinely to change the top altitude of a SID. In such a case, all published altitudes apply UP TO the stated "except maintain" altitude.
     
    KA550 likes this.
  25. Dave S.

    Dave S. Pre-takeoff checklist

    Joined:
    Feb 28, 2017
    Messages:
    110
    Display Name:

    Display name:
    thetexan
    A SID will not give you an altitude that doesn't meet all of the required obstruction clearances such as terrain, MIA. I'm not sure what real world example you are looking for.

    tex
     
  26. genna

    genna Line Up and Wait

    Joined:
    Feb 5, 2015
    Messages:
    896
    Location:
    Baltimore, MD
    Display Name:

    Display name:
    ТУ-104
    https://www.faasafety.gov/files/not...scend-Via-Speed-Adjustments-1.01-20140220.pdf
    Page 6

    Pilots Need To Know
    “Climb Via/Descend Via Except Maintain ”
    • Execute the Climb Via clearance to an ATC assigned “Top Altitude”
    • Execute a Descend Via clearance to an ATC assigned “Bottom Altitude”
     
  27. Velocity173

    Velocity173 Final Approach

    Joined:
    Jul 3, 2012
    Messages:
    9,578
    Display Name:

    Display name:
    Velocity173
    It's in 4-3-2 under Departure Clearances:

    (b) When a top altitude is not published on a SID that contains published crossing restrictions, or when it is necessary to issue an interim altitude instruct the aircraft to “Climb via SID except (altitude assignment/ change)”.

    “Cleared to Johnston Airport, Scott One departure, Jonez transition, Q-One Forty-five, Climb Via SID except maintain flight level one eight zero, expect flight level three five zero one zero minutes after departure.”
     
    Radar Contact and Hacker like this.
  28. Dave S.

    Dave S. Pre-takeoff checklist

    Joined:
    Feb 28, 2017
    Messages:
    110
    Display Name:

    Display name:
    thetexan
    That's right. I forgot about that.

    tex
     
  29. Timbeck2

    Timbeck2 Final Approach

    Joined:
    Nov 4, 2015
    Messages:
    5,198
    Location:
    Vail, Arizona
    Display Name:

    Display name:
    Timbeck2
    The altitude stated after "expect" is your final altitude as read in a clearance. SIDs are designed to get you out of there. Unless a higher altitude is required for terrain (which they should tell you about) your filed altitude of 6,000' is acceptable.
     
  30. flyingron

    flyingron Touchdown! Greaser!

    Joined:
    Jul 31, 2007
    Messages:
    15,351
    Location:
    Catawba, NC
    Display Name:

    Display name:
    FlyingRon
    I'm looking for one that tells you to fly a MINIMUM altitude which is HIGHER than the above minimum instrument altitudes. That was my point.
     
  31. midlifeflyer

    midlifeflyer Final Approach

    Joined:
    May 25, 2006
    Messages:
    8,400
    Location:
    Chapel Hill NC
    Display Name:

    Display name:
    Mark
    Maybe I haven't been following close enough but I'm confused. All minimum altitudes on a SID would be at or above the applicable MIA (other than the "fake" MEAs often found on SID and STAR charts) wouldn't they?
     
  32. flyingron

    flyingron Touchdown! Greaser!

    Joined:
    Jul 31, 2007
    Messages:
    15,351
    Location:
    Catawba, NC
    Display Name:

    Display name:
    FlyingRon
    Again that's not my point. I'm trying to have someone explain a SID that would make the initial question asked a possibility. That is, being told to climb via SID where there was some altitude the pilot would want that was lower than than the minimum altitude on the SID. The "Except Maintain" instruction would primarily seem to be used to instruct higher altitudes, not lower.
     
  33. Palmpilot

    Palmpilot Touchdown! Greaser!

    Joined:
    Apr 1, 2007
    Messages:
    15,001
    Location:
    PUDBY
    Display Name:

    Display name:
    Richard Palm
    Would the attached example fill the bill? It's the first SID I pulled up from SFO. There are no obstacles on this route that would require flight at 16,000 feet or FL220.
     

    Attached Files:

  34. flyingron

    flyingron Touchdown! Greaser!

    Joined:
    Jul 31, 2007
    Messages:
    15,351
    Location:
    Catawba, NC
    Display Name:

    Display name:
    FlyingRon
    That would work!
     
  35. Larry in TN

    Larry in TN Line Up and Wait

    Joined:
    Nov 16, 2013
    Messages:
    981
    Location:
    Nashville, TN
    Display Name:

    Display name:
    Larry in TN
  36. flyingron

    flyingron Touchdown! Greaser!

    Joined:
    Jul 31, 2007
    Messages:
    15,351
    Location:
    Catawba, NC
    Display Name:

    Display name:
    FlyingRon
    Yes, that was along the lines about what I was thinking. You could override a maximum altitude but I couldn't think of a situation where you'd want to override a minimum (as stated in the original question). Palmpilot did find one, 16000 over open ocean.
     
  37. Larry in TN

    Larry in TN Line Up and Wait

    Joined:
    Nov 16, 2013
    Messages:
    981
    Location:
    Nashville, TN
    Display Name:

    Display name:
    Larry in TN
    The change to the 4000' top altitude doesn't have anything to do with the ocean. It is for separation from arrival traffic. If there isn't a conflict you'll get a higher assignment immediately from the departure controller. Usually that assignment is a straight "climb and maintain" which deletes the climb restrictions. Sometimes it is just a "climb vis the SID" which reinstates the published top altitude while retaining the intermediate restrictions.
     
  38. flyingron

    flyingron Touchdown! Greaser!

    Joined:
    Jul 31, 2007
    Messages:
    15,351
    Location:
    Catawba, NC
    Display Name:

    Display name:
    FlyingRon
    The one with the Ocean that I was referring to is a MINIMUM altitude. Yes, it may be a traffic-based restriction, but I was trying to find an example to fit the original question asked...when you'd want to stop at an altitude below the SID MINIMUM altitude.