Could someone explain the typical procedure for the XC portion of the PPL Checkride?

Discussion in 'Flight Following' started by Nick Kan, Sep 14, 2021.

  1. Nick Kan

    Nick Kan Filing Flight Plan

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    I am gonna do the checkride at KDKK near KBUF and I was wondering what happens during the XC portion of it. Do i request following to my 'destination' and then cancel it when the portion is over? What happens?
     
  2. Cloudhound

    Cloudhound Pre-Flight

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    Hey congrats on making it to the checkride stage of your training, very exciting!

    What was your CFI's advise and explanation of the procedure?
     
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  3. EdFred

    EdFred Taxi to Parking

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    When I did mine there was no talking to ATC (we also were outside the Charlie). We took off, headed towards the destination, got to the first checkpoint, did a time checkt, hen suddenly the "weather just got really bad" and just as I was diverting we "lost the engine". That was it for the XC portion.

    Every DPE is different though.
     
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  4. 1000RR

    1000RR Pre-takeoff checklist

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    ^^^ what Cloudhound said. Hopefully your CFI is familiar with this DPE and has some insight or can at least ask around and find out for you. Plenty of folks that have gone through the checkride will have slightly differing ways things went. I just went through mine this past July (down in Florida) and with the DPE I had it went like this... After I preflighted, we got in the plane, I used every checklist available for all procedures, did the taxi brief, we taxied (I checked turn coordinate working, DG working, etc.), did the run up, take-off brief, made radio call (non-towered airport), started my stopwatch, and we departed to the destination for the XC. On the departure/climb, I explained this is where I would pick up flight following, who I'd contact, etc., and who I would contact if need be if I needed to contact the FSS to activate my flight plan, etc. We got on course (I was allowed no GPS assistance although the plane's GPS map was showing but no flight plan entered). I dialed up a VOR, got the Morse code, tracked it to various checkpoints, I did a few time/distance calculations, gave him GS and ETAs from turning the E6B and all that fun stuff. Had the sectional in my lap, showing him where we were and what I was looking for (land marks etc.) then he gave me a diversion. He gave me the airport to divert to, so I started my stop watch, made a turn in the general direction, pulled a magnetic course from the sectional in my lap along with distance to the airport, spun the E6B again with wind information I already had from the flight plan, gave a magnetic heading and went that direction. Gave him an ETE/ETA and fuel needed to make it to the airport and then proceeded to obtain the frequencies to contact tower. Once I did that, he said, ok XC is good, let's move on to maneuvers. So then we went to an area appropriate for all that stuff.

    Hope that's helpful... good luck!
     
    Last edited: Sep 14, 2021
  5. EdFred

    EdFred Taxi to Parking

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    Meow.
     
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  6. 1000RR

    1000RR Pre-takeoff checklist

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    o_O:D, haha, fixed it.
     
  7. EdFred

    EdFred Taxi to Parking

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    I'm guessing voice to text or auto-de-correct was involved. :D
     
  8. 1000RR

    1000RR Pre-takeoff checklist

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    I thought I caught em all, apparently not.
     
  9. scarcherpilot

    scarcherpilot Pre-Flight

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    I walked my DPE through my plan on the ground, but in the air, once I got to my first checkpoint roughly 15 miles away and my DPE said "enough of that let's do stalls". End of the X/C
     
  10. Brad W

    Brad W Line Up and Wait

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    yeah...back in my day the instructors knew the examiners and would coach us students on what to expect. For some reason that I've long ago forgotten I ended up using and examiner that was not the normal guy the school sent students to. She was much less familiar to them.
    Anyway, I can't remember much but I think it went something like Edfred...1st checkpoint then divert...but that was a very long time ago so not worth a whole lot for you.
    As far as following...I'd suggest being ready to call and ask for it, or simulate it with the examiner playing the part...or fly without it VFR and maybe talking through it like 1000RR suggested...that way you're kinda covered for anything. and then just be ready to fly the whole cross county...don't be spring loaded to stop at the first checkpoint.
     
  11. Deelee

    Deelee Cleared for Takeoff

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    I dunno. I think it was ok the first time. I routinely hear meow-ing on freq... wait that's on guard.

    To OP's question - I didn't use FF on my private ride, but I did have to talk to ground, tower and approach (since my airport is under the SFRA). I asked the DPE if he wanted me to get FF once approach turned us loose outside the SFRA. I told him normally I would because it improved SA and provided another set of eyes on my VFR flight... I think he appreciated the question even though he knew that I knew the answer (no).
     
  12. iamtheari

    iamtheari Administrator Management Council Member

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    I didn’t get flight following for any of my check rides so far (private, instrument, commercial, or multi add-on). The topic never came up except maybe a “what is it” or “what services are available to help you out in the air” type of question during the oral exam.

    Unless the examiner really wants to be on flight following, I wouldn’t get it for the check ride. In my opinion, it would be a needless distraction from an already busy cockpit to have to explain to ATC what you are doing with simulated emergencies and the like.
     
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  13. eman1200

    eman1200 Touchdown! Greaser!

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    The DPE on my instrument ride played the role of ATC, basically mimicking getting vectors and whatnot. But I agree I don’t think you’ll get any of that on private. You’ll prob go over the flight plan, then fly it until your first waypoint or so, then be prepared to divert and explain time/distance/fuel to the diversion point. Also make sure you know where u r at all times and how to get back to the starting field.
     
  14. MacFlier

    MacFlier Pre-takeoff checklist

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    Pretty much same for me.
     
  15. Clip4

    Clip4 Final Approach

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    You can plan on going to 1-3 check points. You should have a good top of climb check point. The examiner may ask if for your position on the chart, if you if you are off course and the direction (north or south of an east course) or calculate a GS or similar ( used a distraction). The XC might end with a diversion if you have an airport near combined with a VOR track.
     
    Last edited: Sep 15, 2021
  16. WillFly4Food

    WillFly4Food Pre-takeoff checklist

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    A lot of really good advice in this thread. For me, it was fly the XC to the first checkpoint or so, and then he provided a diversion scenario. Much like others have described. I flew at a Class D, so I picked up Flight Following with Ground, and kept it through the XC, maneuvers, off airport landing, etc, until I was back in the pattern for take off and landing work.
     
  17. DFH65

    DFH65 Pattern Altitude

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    Mine was a long time ago but as has been said. One possibly 2 checkpoints then a diversion. Then off to do air work. I love KDKK such a pretty airport along lake Erie. Is your DPE's name Peter?
     
  18. Domenick

    Domenick Line Up and Wait

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    Mine was a couple decades ago, but quite similar. Talked through my flightplan on the ground.
    "Why that waypoint?"
    "Because I've never seen Grand Coulee Dam."
    "Okay."
    In the air never even made it to my first waypoint.