June 2013 Issue

IFR Weather Planning

A methodical approach to briefing an IFR flight can help you identify and organize information on en route and destination hazards.

It’s been said—and confirmed, in a conference I attended at the FAA’s Oklahoma City complex a couple of years ago—that you can miss every weather-related question on every FAA Knowledge Test (“written”), from Sport Pilot all the way through and including the ATP, and still pass each test...and ultimately, pass every checkride. Our instructors and aviation periodicals implore us to become students of aviation weather, but only on rare occasions are we actually given the tools we need to make weather-related go/no-go decisions. Certainly one of the most common requests I get from my recurrent flight students is for help in understanding weather well enough to make informed choices that protect their families when they fly. So how can we quickly and methodically sift through page after Internet page of aviation weather data to make informed decisions?

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