IFR Aircraft vs VFR Traffic Pattern...?

Discussion in 'Pilot Training' started by patrickw, Aug 30, 2022.

  1. patrickw

    patrickw Filing Flight Plan

    Joined:
    Jul 15, 2016
    Messages:
    7

    Display name:
    PatrickW
    If an aircraft flying IFR is approaching a non towered airport and there is VFR traffic in the traffic pattern, does the IFR aircraft have priority?

    I fly at a larger residential airpark (private runway, public use). The runway is just under 5,000 feet long, with an FBO (100LL and JetA), several aviation related businesses, and an active flight school on one end. The opposite end of the runway has a taxiway entrance for airpark residents. There is another taxiway entrance to the runway about the halfway point. There is no parallel taxiway. Busy traffic from one end (the "business end") often is in opposition with aircraft wanting to taxi from the opposite end (the "residential end").

    An increasing number of twins, turboprops, and small jets are coming in to do business on the north end of our runway. Meanwhile, the airpark residents are flying Cubs, 140's, Cherokee's & RV's and the occasional Bonanza.

    I'm seeing a scenario develop over and over again: Traffic pattern is full. Perhaps a couple of 152's from the flight school, and maybe a Cub and a Cherokee flown by airpark residents. Invariably, a "bigger" airplane will announce something like "Goofy 24, on a 9 mile final for the ILS". Huh...? I get that he's on some kind of instrument plan. But I have no idea how fast he's coming, where he is a minute later, or what he's actually going to do. And I wouldn't expect any of the student pilots to know any better.

    So who has the right of way? I don't think I've EVER seen any of these "big" airplanes do a traffic pattern. At best they'll do a mid-field flyover 90 degrees to the runway, followed by half a bomber pattern. Are they THAT unmanuverable that they can't fly a normal pattern with everyone else? It seems like the prevailing attitude is "I'm on an IFR approach, so I have right of way and you have to get out of my way because I'm on final even if I'm 10 miles away".

    When is "being on Final" actually being "on Final"...? Does straight-in traffic on a long final have priority over existing pattern traffic...? And how long is a "long final"...? Does somebody coming off an IFR plan or following an ILS approach (or whatever it's called) have automatic priority...? When a guy announces that he's on a 9 mile final, does that mean that somebody who's already on a normal base leg has to break off...? How about a 5 mile final...? Or a 3 mile final...? Are these guys getting "cleared" to do this by some ATC person, unbeknownst to everyone else whose already in the pattern...?

    That crash in Watsonville could easily have happened here. That's a scenario I see quite often, living where I do.

    Thoughts...?
     
  2. luvflyin

    luvflyin Touchdown! Greaser!

    Joined:
    May 8, 2015
    Messages:
    14,147
    Location:
    Vancouver, WA

    Display name:
    Luvflyin
    Here’s all kinds of thoughts about that. https://www.pilotsofamerica.com/com...tsonville-mid-air-multiple-fatalities.139336/

    https://www.pilotsofamerica.com/community/threads/straight-in-finals-is-that-a-good-idea.139383/
     
    TCABM likes this.
  3. Jim Carpenter

    Jim Carpenter Pre-takeoff checklist

    Joined:
    Oct 7, 2019
    Messages:
    491
    Location:
    Lander, WY

    Display name:
    Jim Carpenter
    No, "they" do not have any kind of priority whatsoever over other VFR traffic. Further, ATC does not provide any kind of clearance that allows priority, either. If the aircraft is on an IFR flight plan, when they are maybe 10-15 miles out, ATC will say "change to advisory frequency approved, report cancellation on this frequency or through Flight Service." At that point, the inbound aircraft should tune to your CTAF, and it's on them to fit in with the current pattern activity. Now, let's say you're the only other plane in the pattern, maybe on downwind in your 152, and an inbound fast guy calls 10-mile final. You could be courteous and extend downwind, or even do a 360 midfield, to let them come in ahead of you. But, already on base turn, no, the fast inbound 'should' do whatever to follow you to landing. Or, with many little guys in the pattern, they should plan an appropriate entry to merge into the existing traffic.
    Of course, it's not prudent to try to cut off a fast inbound, even if you know you have right-of-way, so sometimes the best defensive action is to turn out of the way. If it were an onerous case of the big fast guy barging in, I might have to follow them to landing, park the plane, walk into the FBO and have a "discussion," all on the ground, of course.
     
    azpilot, jeffwh1 and Texan Pilot like this.
  4. Domenick

    Domenick Cleared for Takeoff

    Joined:
    Sep 11, 2019
    Messages:
    1,178

    Display name:
    Domenick
    I also hear this often.
    At a non-towered airport IFR traffic does NOT have priority. Some IFR pilots seem to believe everybody knows IFR procedures. It seems a bit arrogant.
    If their IFR call is not informative ask them to clarify with position, altitude, and speed. "IFR traffic, please clarify position, altitude, and speed." This may get the point across for this visit and future visits.
    Make sure your radio calls are correct and on time.
    If the IFR traffic can be accommodated in some way, then that may be the neighborly thing to do. However, they do not have the right to disrupt the entire pattern.
    In an extreme situation, you can always suggest they enter on the 45.
     
    azpilot, Daleandee and Texan Pilot like this.
  5. dtuuri

    dtuuri En-Route

    Joined:
    Apr 21, 2011
    Messages:
    4,914
    Location:
    Madison, OH

    Display name:
    dtuuri
    I have some thoughts, alright. You seem prejudiced against business aircraft. Under VFR conditions, all aircraft are created equal. Under IFR, there should only be one aircraft — on an IFR flight plan. The problem is marginal weather where VFR aircraft and IFR ones may differ about what is the safest way to operate their aircraft. An IFR pilot may choose to circle at circling minimums, for example, in a way opposite of a VFR aircraft practicing landings.

    I've never been a fan of midfield runway crossings to the downwind. For one reason, in calm winds, two aircraft approaching from opposite sides would both be justified by heading straight toward each other. That's a sign of bad procedure design among other reasons.

    A plane on final has the right of way. If you choose to cut him off, you had better be sure you can get down and out of the way before he arrives. Once you are on final, though, you are ahead of him and lower, so you have taken the right of way. Not a nice way to treat somebody coming to your community for the purpose of commerce. Airports, after all, are ports.
     
    Tantalum likes this.
  6. rhkennerly

    rhkennerly Pre-takeoff checklist

    Joined:
    Jun 10, 2021
    Messages:
    305
    Location:
    Virginia Beach, VA

    Display name:
    rhkennerly
    According to IFR PILOT mag editor Frank Bowlin's answer to a similar question (I found an extract elsewhere, as IFR pilot magazine is behind a paywall):

    "You're right. The regs and AIM are essentially silent on mixing instrument traffic (real or practice) with VFR traffic patterns. What's that tell you?

    It tells me that it makes no distinction. Only the published right-of-way rules apply. Note, though, that recently the FAA has made a bit of a point of saying that IFR traffic must follow existing patterns and traffic flow. ...Many instrument pilots tend to innocently and incorrectly assume that they've got right of way in VMC, especially if they're on an instrument flight plan. No, they've got to fit into the traffic pattern just as if they were VFR traffic approaching to land. The regs and AIM don't leave room for anything else."


    essential, at an uncontrolled field, the meteorological conditions determine ROW. VMC means VFR applies, even for aircraft on an instrument flight plan. Enroute Flight controllers have no idea about traffic conditions at an uncontrolled airport, so they cannot clear an IFR flight to land. They can only clear the pilot to make the approach (and expect the pilot to use his knowledge of the FAR & observed conditions to exercise proper judgment)

    this question dovetails nicely with one earlier this week on calling "straight-in" from xxx miles out, abusing the ROW rule over other traffic cutting off an aircraft "on final." When you call a 5 mile straight in, even when you call "dibs" on the official word "final" in your comms, when are you actually on final?


    https://www.thefreelibrary.com/IFR+vs.+VFR+Right+Of+Way.-a0702629517
     
    azpilot likes this.
  7. rhkennerly

    rhkennerly Pre-takeoff checklist

    Joined:
    Jun 10, 2021
    Messages:
    305
    Location:
    Virginia Beach, VA

    Display name:
    rhkennerly
    But that's the conundrum here, isn't it? In VMC conditions with a pattern full of mixed performance aircraft, where does "final" legitimately begin for aircraft claiming "straight-in?" More importantly, what does a 60 mph one-lunger wheezing around downwind to base do when he hears the radio call, "Cessna 5555X on 2 mile straight-in final for 27"? The Lunger is probably lower than the straight-in & on base to boot.

    the real problem, from where I sit, is pilots who refuse under any circumstances to join the VFR pattern in VMC conditions.

    patterns are both repeatable & predictable. That's why they are called patterns.
     
    azpilot and Texan Pilot like this.
  8. rhkennerly

    rhkennerly Pre-takeoff checklist

    Joined:
    Jun 10, 2021
    Messages:
    305
    Location:
    Virginia Beach, VA

    Display name:
    rhkennerly
    I heard anonymous responses to straight-in calls at Deland in Fl., "Negative, Ghostrider. The pattern is full." Seems to get the message across.

    "Well, that’ll just about cover the flybys."
     

    Attached Files:

  9. PaulS

    PaulS Touchdown! Greaser!

    Joined:
    May 29, 2007
    Messages:
    13,198
    Location:
    New England

    Display name:
    PaulS
    You asked for thoughts, so here they are. In my opinion the pattern should never be "full" with aircraft doing touch and goes. Personally if I'm going somewhere to practice landings and hear more than one or two in the pattern, I choose to go somewhere else. I also question the safety of solo students filling up a pattern, inevitably something always happens in the pattern that requires a standard pattern to be upset, like a plane on a straight in, and with too many students in the pattern mistakes happen.

    It also seems like you are perturbed by other aircraft trying to get into the field. Instrument approaches mostly end with straight ins to the field. And most of the time there isn't an issue. The call you mentioned in your OP was perfect in my opinion. It tells you what the guy is doing, an instrument approach, and where exactly he is. By the book IMO. If you are on a downwind when you hear this, you need to speak up, even if you just reported your position, report again, the other guy may have just switched over. I would say "Cessna xxx, left downwind, abeam the numbers, 22, aircraft on final how fast are you going?" You will get one of two answers, the first is " Cessna, you have plenty of time I'll keep my eye out for you" or you will get something like " Cessna, I'm going 140 knots, and will be there in a few minutes, would you mind extending."

    I think traffic doing touch and goes should make room for incoming traffic by extending upwinds or downwinds, when you do this you let the other guy know. It builds good will. The problem with 4 students in the pattern is it is likely they won't know what to do. One or two students can be worked around, more become problematic.

    For me when I am doing a practice approach I'll report like your hypothetical did, then listen. If I hear a nervous student, I'll tell them that I'm breaking off the straight in and will work in behind them. If it's a confident sounding pilot I'll ask if they wouldn't mind extending. If they say no, then I'll break off. I haven't run into a jerk yet doing this. But I suppose it will happen some day.
     
  10. TCABM

    TCABM En-Route

    Joined:
    Apr 23, 2013
    Messages:
    3,366

    Display name:
    3G
    more complex than using MVFR, which NWS sets the criteria as a ceiling of up to 3,000 AGL and/or visibility greater than three miles.
     
  11. dtuuri

    dtuuri En-Route

    Joined:
    Apr 21, 2011
    Messages:
    4,914
    Location:
    Madison, OH

    Display name:
    dtuuri
    It doesn't really matter, does it? If you want a rule, say five miles, then now you're obliged to extend downwind to give way and the other guy becomes incentivized to cheat his estimated range from the runway. Leave sleeping dogs lie, I say.

    If he's flying an appropriately sized pattern for his airspeed, he'll be landed and off the runway in the four minutes it takes for the twin to land. [EDIT: My math skills today have been off, sorry. In this situation it all depends on what you see. You could widen out and follow or level off and climb away for another approach if you can't be sure to beat the other plane.] If the twin knows there's traffic on base, if he doesn't become extremely nervous and vigilant then he's a dope with no real experience. Hopefully he'll be informed from threads like these and be prepared to go around.

    "Final" is a pattern leg. Most approaches to uncontrolled airports in my career had no traffic in the pattern and the instrument approach had straight-in minimums. Circling past the airport and around it, needlessly, adds a tenth of an hour to the hobbs. At a nominal $100 per [EDIT]tenth of an hour, that's $100 per go-around out of the flight department's budget if it was required by your "standard".
     
    Last edited: Aug 30, 2022
    Tantalum likes this.
  12. sarangan

    sarangan Pattern Altitude

    Joined:
    Jun 7, 2008
    Messages:
    1,679

    Display name:
    Andrew, CFI-I
    IFR clearances do not extend into uncontrolled airspace. Most untowered airports are in uncontrolled airspace below 700 ft AGL (or 1200 ft AGL). Everyone is equal in uncontrolled airspace. However, if there is a Boeing 737 on approach, it is unreasonable to expect them to follow behind the Piper Cub on downwind. This is where common sense is important. If I hear an IFR traffic making a call as if they own the whole airport, I get out of their way, but make it known that their behavior is not welcome. In most cases, they politely ask if we can extend downwind or do something similar to give them some extra room, and everyone in the pattern is usually happy to oblige.
     
    Last edited: Aug 30, 2022
    Texan Pilot likes this.
  13. dtuuri

    dtuuri En-Route

    Joined:
    Apr 21, 2011
    Messages:
    4,914
    Location:
    Madison, OH

    Display name:
    dtuuri
    Ok, make it "marginally IFR" then.
     
  14. bflynn

    bflynn Final Approach

    Joined:
    Apr 24, 2012
    Messages:
    8,768
    Location:
    KTTA

    Display name:
    Brian Flynn
    This happens every week for us. The courteous things is almost always done where aircraft on downwind will extend for the turbine to land straight in. No need for drama.
     
  15. Silvaire

    Silvaire En-Route

    Joined:
    Oct 10, 2012
    Messages:
    4,411

    Display name:
    Silvaire
    We need to get off this ROW fetish and just accommodate each other in a logical case by case nature. If we can't do it on our own then yea, they're gonna make more rules. We don't need more rules.
     
  16. mandm

    mandm Line Up and Wait

    Joined:
    Feb 7, 2020
    Messages:
    873
    Location:
    Chicago

    Display name:
    Michael
    When flying an approach, the GPS only displays the distance to the next waypoint in the procedure so it can be tricky to provide the exact distance from the airport. Also, I believe the GPS distance reports to midfield so if the runway is 2 miles long you usually have a differential in the distance to the numbers vs the middle of the field. This can make reporting by distance not exactly accurate. I think foreflight though does a better calculation when it makes an announcement for your distance on runway on final.
     
  17. MauleSkinner

    MauleSkinner Touchdown! Greaser!

    Joined:
    Oct 25, 2005
    Messages:
    13,106
    Location:
    Wichita, KS

    Display name:
    MauleSkinner
    A position call of ten mile final is no more than a position call, and exhibits no more “attitude” than a position call on downwind.
     
    Palmpilot likes this.
  18. rhkennerly

    rhkennerly Pre-takeoff checklist

    Joined:
    Jun 10, 2021
    Messages:
    305
    Location:
    Virginia Beach, VA

    Display name:
    rhkennerly
    [QUOTE="dtuuri, post: 3302359, member: 9284"
    "Final" is a pattern leg. Most approaches to uncontrolled airports in my career had no traffic in the pattern and the instrument approach had straight-in minimums. Circling past the airport and around it, needlessly, adds a tenth of an hour to the hobbs. At a nominal $100 per minute, that's $600 per go-around out of the flight department's budget if it was required by your "standard".[/QUOTE]

    Budget is relevant. on an income-adjusted basis, It's about as expensive for an individual to go around.

    The real question is do I at 60 kts and 3-500 ft AGL (lower than the approaching plane) turning onto base "owe" ROW to an individual who's been pretending ROW by calling a "straight-in final" for the last 8 miles and who is now on a 1-mile "actual" final?

    That's essentially what happened in the CA accident. (forget for the moment that the twin was smoking all the way in at over 150 knts. )

    There is no basis in FAR anticollision regs for straight-in during VMC when traffic is present.
     
    azpilot likes this.
  19. Deelee

    Deelee Pattern Altitude

    Joined:
    Feb 12, 2019
    Messages:
    1,757

    Display name:
    Deelee
    Yep. Same here. Happens almost every time I forget to fly for a few weeks and go out of the SFRA to fly the pattern at a smaller airport nearby. If there is a jet or twin coming in on final and I'm on downwind I let them know I'm extending and will follow them in. Do I have to? Maybe not. Can I tighten it up and squeeze in before them? Probably. Pulling the power out on a '69 Arrow will get me down pretty fast. But why? I guess I put myself in the shoes of the other guy. If I try to turn early base and get in first, now I just added to his/her workload and stress and maybe force a go-around... would I want to do a go-around in a Citation because someone in a single engine piston decided to squeeze it in? Probably not. No skin off my teeth to extend downwind for a minute and just come in behind. I don't like to add any drama to the situation.

    If I'm doing practice approaches, I will either a.) try to pick an airport that doesn't look busy or b.) if the pattern is super busy and I do exactly this:
     
    azpilot and PaulS like this.
  20. TrueCourse

    TrueCourse Line Up and Wait

    Joined:
    Dec 10, 2019
    Messages:
    691

    Display name:
    TrueCourse
    Though the cost of a jet’s go around or full pattern vs straight in might be a factor for some jet operators (and folks not everyone estimates it at $6000/hour), it should not factor into anything past the initial plan or desire to do a straight in. After that, the more important thing is flying an established, stable, constant descent to the runway. It reduces the risk associated with maneuvering among lighter and slower traffic. It’s why circling in MVR conditions is not a favored or even approved procedure for many jet operators. Expecting a jet to fly the final, break it off, go upwind, then fly the pattern, and sequence outside of numerous targets doesn’t make life easier for anyone. So, when able, just cut the faster jet traffic a break and accommodate them on a straight-in approach. This is not to say they have the right away or can’t fly the pattern, but it is probably the most prudent thing to do at their higher speeds. They aren’t ‘strutting their stuff’, they are simply operating under a different set of procedures.

    I’m wondering if student pilots, or private pilots for that matter, that are hell-bent on not accommodating any traffic entering from a long final, IFR or other good reason, have flown much at a controlled field where ATC is constantly re-sequencing T&G traffic that’s in the pattern, as others enter from base or final. Works pretty good when one listens to and complies with the clearance from ATC. It can work good at an uncontrolled field if pilots are informed, act reasonable, and avoid taking advantage of certain vague FAA guidance.
     
    Texan Pilot and PaulS like this.
  21. Country Flier

    Country Flier Line Up and Wait

    Joined:
    Sep 20, 2019
    Messages:
    622

    Display name:
    CFL
    I'm assuming you fly at more than just an uncontrolled field (and maybe I'm assuming too much)...have you ever had tower ask you to extend your downwind for an IFR aircraft on the approach? Does that make you butthurt too? Or is it only when you have to do it yourself without being told by tower?
     
  22. rhkennerly

    rhkennerly Pre-takeoff checklist

    Joined:
    Jun 10, 2021
    Messages:
    305
    Location:
    Virginia Beach, VA

    Display name:
    rhkennerly
    [QUOTE="
    I’m wondering if student pilots, or private pilots for that matter, that are hell-bent on not accommodating any traffic entering from a long final, IFR or other good reason, have flown much at a controlled field where ATC is constantly re-sequencing T&G traffic that’s in the pattern, as others enter from base or final. Works pretty good when one listens to and complies with the clearance from ATC. It can work good at an uncontrolled field if pilots are informed, act reasonable, and avoid taking advantage of certain vague FAA guidance.[/QUOTE]

    sequencing at a controlled field isn't the topic, we all know how that works. The question is self-sequencing at an uncontrolled airport.

    And frankly getting out of the way of kero-burners isn't the question, either.

    The question is about sequencing near-peer aircraft in an uncontrolled environment when some insist on claiming a not recommended AC 90-66B defined final from 5 miles out.
     
  23. rhkennerly

    rhkennerly Pre-takeoff checklist

    Joined:
    Jun 10, 2021
    Messages:
    305
    Location:
    Virginia Beach, VA

    Display name:
    rhkennerly
    you're just twisting the conversation around a point that no one was discussing. Perhaps we should reset to the examples in AC 90-66B
     
  24. dtuuri

    dtuuri En-Route

    Joined:
    Apr 21, 2011
    Messages:
    4,914
    Location:
    Madison, OH

    Display name:
    dtuuri
    Blush, me neither. Meant $600 per tenth of an hour. Nice catch, see edit.
     
    TrueCourse likes this.
  25. dtuuri

    dtuuri En-Route

    Joined:
    Apr 21, 2011
    Messages:
    4,914
    Location:
    Madison, OH

    Display name:
    dtuuri
    You should be turning final at 4-500 feet, not base. So, yeah, follow him in.

    Not at all what happened or the 152 would have been late to the scene of the accident.

    You have some screwy ideas, imo. There are legal cases that prove otherwise.
     
  26. rhkennerly

    rhkennerly Pre-takeoff checklist

    Joined:
    Jun 10, 2021
    Messages:
    305
    Location:
    Virginia Beach, VA

    Display name:
    rhkennerly
    I'm not the only one. don't you get tired of carrying the goal posts around to fit your logic?
     
  27. dtuuri

    dtuuri En-Route

    Joined:
    Apr 21, 2011
    Messages:
    4,914
    Location:
    Madison, OH

    Display name:
    dtuuri
    I never get tired of enlightening pilots with misconceptions. You might like to read this in view of your statement that "There is no basis in FAR anticollision regs for straight-in during VMC when traffic is present." 4236.PDF (ntsb.gov)
     
    Palmpilot likes this.
  28. Archer Jack

    Archer Jack Pre-takeoff checklist

    Joined:
    Oct 24, 2018
    Messages:
    258
    Location:
    Mansfield, TX

    Display name:
    Jack
    :yeahthat:
     
    azpilot likes this.
  29. MauleSkinner

    MauleSkinner Touchdown! Greaser!

    Joined:
    Oct 25, 2005
    Messages:
    13,106
    Location:
    Wichita, KS

    Display name:
    MauleSkinner
    There you go…ruining a perfectly good argument with actual facts.
     
    KA550 and dtuuri like this.
  30. Country Flier

    Country Flier Line Up and Wait

    Joined:
    Sep 20, 2019
    Messages:
    622

    Display name:
    CFL
    2:27
    2:54
    Aren't you cute...try some original thought for a change. On second thought nevermind...just gonna block/ignore the parrot.
     
    EdFred likes this.
  31. Fearless Tower

    Fearless Tower Touchdown! Greaser!

    Joined:
    Jan 1, 2010
    Messages:
    16,106
    Location:
    Norfolk, VA

    Display name:
    Fearless Tower
    That is NOT what happened in the California accident.

    In that case the conflict started when the 152 turned base AFTER the 340 announced he was on a 3 mile final.
     
    Palmpilot and PaulS like this.
  32. MauleSkinner

    MauleSkinner Touchdown! Greaser!

    Joined:
    Oct 25, 2005
    Messages:
    13,106
    Location:
    Wichita, KS

    Display name:
    MauleSkinner

     
    Palmpilot, PaulS and Fearless Tower like this.
  33. Salty

    Salty Touchdown! Greaser!

    Joined:
    Dec 21, 2016
    Messages:
    11,621
    Location:
    FL

    Display name:
    Salty
    While you may very well be right, I don’t think that’s a known fact. People often make the call well after the turn has begun, and if there is chatter, and one is pushier on the radio than another, order of calls may not indicate order of events. Personally, I don’t make the call until I start my bank, so that I am most visible (fully banked) when I finish my call.
     
    azpilot likes this.
  34. Fearless Tower

    Fearless Tower Touchdown! Greaser!

    Joined:
    Jan 1, 2010
    Messages:
    16,106
    Location:
    Norfolk, VA

    Display name:
    Fearless Tower
    You are correct. There is certainly room for variation in positions, but the important issue for folks to understand is that whether or not the 152 had already turned base when they called or the 340 wasn't exactly at 3 miles, there was going to be a conflict when the 152 made the base call. Under normal circumstances (ie the 340 not flying at ludicrous speed) the 152 would have forced the 340 to go around. There is no way a 340 even at a reasonable approach speed to slow down enough to be able to land behind the 152 at that point.
     
    Palmpilot likes this.
  35. Fearless Tower

    Fearless Tower Touchdown! Greaser!

    Joined:
    Jan 1, 2010
    Messages:
    16,106
    Location:
    Norfolk, VA

    Display name:
    Fearless Tower
    As an Instrument Pilot and a Twin driver, IMO, common sense should be applied by all parties when VFR and IFR aircraft mix it up at uncontrolled airports. Like Silvaire said above, these ROW arguments get a little ridiculous when the outcome is death.

    Like so many things in life, the attitude of 'don't be a A-hole' will serve you well in the traffic pattern.

    In my opinion when conditions are VFR, an approaching IFR aircraft should be monitoring the CTAF while on approach and if traffic is light and not a ton of planes in the pattern, then by all means go for the straight in. If there are planes doing pattern work, I'll usually break it off and make a standard VFR pattern entry.

    Where it gets tricky is when it is marginal VFR with ceilings between 1200-1500' where it might be perfectly legal for people to be doing VFR pattern work but the IFR arrival has to stay on the approach until breakout. That is where I think it is most critical for the VFR folks to be listening to the CTAF and adjusting their pattern to accommodate. Too many pilots are flying around broadcasting position calls while at the same time not listening to what anyone else is saying on the radio.
     
  36. Hang 4

    Hang 4 Pattern Altitude

    Joined:
    Aug 18, 2017
    Messages:
    1,788

    Display name:
    Hang 4
    My pet peeve in this situation is the IFR aircraft announcing positions based on approach fixes at non-towered fields. I'm at GUMBY is unlikely to help any VFR folks in the pattern. All of this pattern conversation is based on pilots both announcing and listening. Listening requires communication that is understandable to all.
     
    Palmpilot, Half Fast and kyleb like this.
  37. Tantalum

    Tantalum Final Approach

    Joined:
    Feb 22, 2017
    Messages:
    8,848

    Display name:
    San_Diego_Pilot
    PREACH!
     
  38. Fearless Tower

    Fearless Tower Touchdown! Greaser!

    Joined:
    Jan 1, 2010
    Messages:
    16,106
    Location:
    Norfolk, VA

    Display name:
    Fearless Tower
    Very true. And there are equally crappy IFR pilot communicators.

    It’s not that hard to read the distances off the approach plate instead of the fix name
     
  39. Tantalum

    Tantalum Final Approach

    Joined:
    Feb 22, 2017
    Messages:
    8,848

    Display name:
    San_Diego_Pilot
    Yeah but saying the name of the fix in your King Air sounds so much cooler and intimidating to the guy in the 152 who's 20 hours into his training and doing solo patterns

    /s

    Seriously, as stated above. Just communicate and don't be a dick to your fellow pilot
     
    Texan Pilot and dmspilot like this.
  40. PaulS

    PaulS Touchdown! Greaser!

    Joined:
    May 29, 2007
    Messages:
    13,198
    Location:
    New England

    Display name:
    PaulS
    Yeah, there are some dumbasses out there who don't understand this. Direction and distance are best.
     
    jeffwh1 likes this.