On The Air: August 2014


Many years ago as a newly minted instrument pilot, I was flying an old Cessna 172. When I checked in with approach, after the usual exchange, the controller asked me if this was a training flight.

I was a bit shocked because I figured he saw me all over the sky (I thought I was doing fine) and wondered if I was a student. I answered no.

After a short while I keyed the mic and said, “In reference to your question about the training flight, aren’t they all?”

The controller agreed and all was quiet.

Joe (Last name withheld.)
Rochester, Minn.

The RNAV (GPS) RWY 32 approach at Boston Logan airport, the final approach begins at DUNNK (as in Dunkin Donuts, which is headquartered near Boston) and then includes the following sequence, most of which pays homage to the saying “Park your Car in Harvard Yard” which highlights how the Boston accent drops most “R’s”:HAVRD YAARD BGDIG PAARK

Richard B Jacobs
South Dartmouth, Mass.

I was headed up the Monterey Peninsula toward San Francisco when I heard NorCal trying to reach another aircraft, with no success. The controller asked me to try, and I had no luck either. A minute later I heard the subject aircraft calling in, was able to reach him and relay ATC’s requests.

Five minutes later, NorCal said, “N58TT, you sir, are a scholar and a gentleman, and we appreciate everything you do. You can now contact NorCal on 127.4.”
As I acknowledged and started to switch frequencies, I heard one of the incoming airliners check in: “Well, that’s a hard act to follow, but this is Cactus 123 descending out of flight level 230.”

Al Davies
Santa Rosa, Calif.

Many years ago on my long solo cross country for my private license, I was flying westbound from Worcester, Massachusetts to Schenectady, New York. It was generally a nice day but I was battling a strong headwind in my rented Cessna 152. I was busily computing my ground speed by measuring the time and distance between landmarks. I had been well trained by my instructor to use all available resources in flight, including flight following.

In cruise, I was with Bradley approach and I asked the controller for my ground speed. The exchange went something like this:
Me: “Bradley approach, Cessna 6460 Lima has a request.”
Bradley: “Cessna 6460 Lima, go ahead.”
Me: “60 Lima. Can you tell me what you are showing for my ground speed?”
Bradley: “Fifty knots.”
Me (somewhat incredulously): “Five—Zero knots?”
Bradley: “Yup. Guess you should have driven, huh?”

Jim Baum
Boxborough, Mass.

Don’t you wish you had been a fly-on-wall at the FAA meeting when Reno VOR (RNO) was changed to Mustang (FMG)? Obviously someone on the staff had experience with “ranching.” And who would like to explain why “FMG” is the ID?

John Baum
Pleasanton, Calif.

Arriving into Portland from the south on the TIMBRS arrival—named after the Portland major league soccer team—I noticed a couple interesting fix names on the route for landing east. MYCRO BBREW PUBBB certainly draw attention to one of the highlights of the area.

Sal Cruz
Watsonville, Calif.


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