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Why can I not use Victor airways on the flight planner for VFR planning

Alan M 4 years ago updated by Scott S 3 years ago 6

All I can do in VFR planning is point to point. Am I doing it wrong or do Victor airways need to be added. Alan McPeak

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Answer
Answered

Victor airways are available for planning purposes. To start a new route, click the "Route" menu item in the upper left and select "New" from the list. Complete the form that opens and select "Low Airways" from the Routing drop down list. This will auto-select the shortest route to your destination using victor airways. Keep in mind that auto-routing respects MEA's for the airways. If the flight planner creates a route that is not as direct as you expect, it is likely that your planned altitude falls below an MEA for one of the airways that is along a more direct route. Try increasing your altitude in the New Route form and let the planner create a new route. Once the altitude is high enough, the planner will be able to create a route that is a direct as possible given available airways.

Answer
Answered

Victor airways are available for planning purposes. To start a new route, click the "Route" menu item in the upper left and select "New" from the list. Complete the form that opens and select "Low Airways" from the Routing drop down list. This will auto-select the shortest route to your destination using victor airways. Keep in mind that auto-routing respects MEA's for the airways. If the flight planner creates a route that is not as direct as you expect, it is likely that your planned altitude falls below an MEA for one of the airways that is along a more direct route. Try increasing your altitude in the New Route form and let the planner create a new route. Once the altitude is high enough, the planner will be able to create a route that is a direct as possible given available airways.

Once a "Plan" is created, I can not figure out how to change back and forth from "Direct" to "Low Airways" without deleting the route and creating a new route. Is it possible to switch back and forth?

Currently, the auto-routing functionality only runs when creating a new route.

Would there be a possibility to add Victor Airway routing during planning, similar to what SkyVector now does?


Example: https://skyvector.com/?ll=45.440959031219776,-109.04631042738559&chart=302&zoom=4&fpl=%20KBIL%20BIL%20V611%20DDY%20KCPR

Being able to convert the current route into a sequence of fixes and airways and, vice-versa, a sequence of fixes and airways into a usable route is a key feature. Without it, I find that the current planner is nearly useless for IFR planning.


In general, the automatically selected route isn't good enough. It's plausible, but: often contains extended over-water operations, which I'm not going to do in early spring in a single-engine aircraft; often contains routings that I know (from experience) ATC will never approve; and doesn't easily allow me to adjust the path to take advantage of preferences in different areas.


If I could convert the route into a standard IFR clearance, edit the clearance, and then resubmit to the planner, that would be nearly perfect. The existing navlog editing isn't good enough. If I start with a low-level route, and I add a waypoint or try to move one, then it moves the route off the airways and goes direct, which isn't what I wanted at all.


If I type a route with Victor airways into the "route" box, it goes completely haywire, and starts routing me through Canada.

+1

I would also like to see victor airway routing option that allows pilots to enter their own custom IFR routes versus just the auto-generated, shortest route feature.  For instance, the shortest routing in the Puget Sound / Seattle area puts most GA pilots on victor airways that ATC would never assign to piston powered aircraft - due to heavy jet traffic for KSEA.  Thanks for reading my suggestion, please keep up the great work on this terrific app!