See section 7 commentary for more explanation of wake
6.02 & 6.03
A controller may offer an intersection take-off to spare you a long taxi,
because there is traffic blocking the taxiway that goes to the end, or because
there is no taxiway going to the end, and he would rather you not backtrack.
You can find out the length of the runway remaining after a particular intersection
by (a) estimating based on the airport diagram in the CFS (b) asking the
controller or (c) sometimes it included in the ATIS. If you haven't worked
out your required take-off distance as part of your preflight planning you
may have to ask the controller to "standby" while you pull out the POH and
With no other instructions you join on or before the downwind leg. The controller
will specifically clear you "left base" or "straight in" if he wants you
to join base or final. Usually the controller will not cross you over the
That means that if there is normally
a left hand circuit, the controller will clear you to right base if that
is more convenient for you. She may even ask, "Golf November Uniform, are
you set up for right base or downwind?"
(1) Cross at circuit height to join the circuit.
(2) I don't know about you. but I can barely see the windsock from that height.
(3) 2000' agl is usually the same as 1000' above circuit altitude. This
is the height to cross if you are not landing at that airport at all.
(4) Any aircraft looking for wind information before joining should be 500'
above the circuit.
Remember from question 6.04 above that you must join
on downwind or crosswind if no leg is specified in a clearance. Therefore you should not join base
or final whether by a right or left turn. Answer choice four is a trick,
because you should not normally descend on the downwind leg at all. The
airplane following the blue track in my picture is doing a circuit join known
as "downwind on the forty-five." This is the standard join in the United
States, at uncontrolled circuits. Americans consider crossing midfield to
join downwind from the inside to be weird.
In this case it's that easy. If the runway is obstructed you won't get a
landing clearance, but if there is no reason you can see why you shouldn't
land, and the controller is not talking to someone else, ask for a clearance
by saying your call sign followed by "short final." If you do not receive
a clearance, you must overshoot, even if there is nothing in the way.
6.08 and 6.09
Whatever the circuit height is at an aerodrome, you are still required to
602.114 and be 500' below the cloud base. If the clouds are so
low that that does not leave you a safe altitude to fly, then the clouds
are too low to be in the circuit. It is very dangerous to fly close
to the clouds in an attempt to get around the circuit anyway, because there
is a high risk of collision with other aircraft doing the same thing.
(1) If you have a straight in clearance, you descend straight towards the
airport, on runway heading, at whatever rate will bring you properly to the
(2) An airport with high terrain or noise sensitive areas on both sides of
the runway may have a published circuit altitude higher than 1000' agl. If
the airport is underneath class C airspace, or near the navaid for the instrument
approach to a nearby airport, the circuit altitude may be lower than 1000'.
Boundary Bay has an 800' circuit, because class C airspace for Vancouver
International Airport starts at 1500'. That allows aircraft to cross
500' above circuit altitude and still have a 200' margin of safety.
(3) Clouds may force a lower circuit as described in 6.08
If you're told to reduce airspeed, then reduce airspeed, don't turn without
asking permission. You can lower the flaps to decrease your minimum
safe speed. Your POH gives a range of approach speeds for flaps up
and flaps down. Use the lowest speed in the range only if you can control
the airspeed closely. Leave a margin of safety according to your skill
and the wind conditions. No matter what you're told, don't reduce airspeed
below what is safe for your aircraft. That reminds me of a joke.
(1) Using full flaps in a strong crosswind is not recommended because the
flaps may affect airflow over the elevator as you sideslip, decreasing elevator
(2) Landing on another runway is a good idea, but this answer choice is wrong
because you need to ask for and receive a clearance before you can take another
(3) You don't need a clearance to overshoot, but the controller would appreciate
you telling him in advance what you are doing, if you can safely do so.
"Echo Alfa Charlie unable this crosswind. Overshooting, request
runway one eight."
(4) Certainly do not continue if you do not feel you can do so safely.
6.13 and 6.14
Some controllers are in basement rooms, not control towers and air traffic
radar does not show clouds at all. You have full responsibility for
remaining VFR. I was crawling into Oakland once, barely legal
between the bases of the clouds and the tops of the buildings, and the approach
controller told me to report overhead a VFR landmark at 3000'. My response?
"Unable VFR at 3000'." So he gave me a different instruction.
6.15 and 6.16
Special VFR allows you to fly in a control zone when weather limits are below
those for normal VFR flight. Student pilots are not permitted to fly
Special VFR. It remains your responsibility to remain clear of cloud
(1) You could change altitude to avoid the other aircraft, saying "X-ray
Yankee Zulu descending one thousand for traffic" but this answer choice is
incorrect because you do not always use altitude changes to avoid
You are not constrained to your heading until it kills you:
you may change heading as required to avoid the traffic, telling the controller
you are "in a left three-sixty for traffic" "widening out to the left for
traffic." If you are not in an immediate conflict you can ask the
controller about the traffic. "There's an aircraft converging from
my right, do you want me to follow him?" (if you don't remember who has the
right of way, check back to section 1.0)
ATC may reply, "negative, that aircraft is departing to the west,"
but you were absolutely correct to ask.
VFR aircraft normally put the numbers 1 - 2 - 0 - 0 on the transponder. We
call that "squawking 1200." That number shows on an air traffic controller's
radar, and she can see that there is a VFR aircraft out there, even if you
are in uncontrolled airspace and are not talking to her. The radar
also reports your speed, so she can guess that you are in a training airplane.
Above 12,500' in Canada you are in class B airspace. You must have
a clearance before you enter class B airspace, and the controller will almost
certainly assign you a discrete transponder code, so she can keep
track of you, but if she doesn't, you squawk 1400. As far as I know
1300 is not a special transponder code.
Only push the ident button when instructed to do so by ATC. Push the
button once, then release it. Your aircraft's blip will flash for a
few seconds on the controller's screen, so he can pick you out from other
aircraft. If you push it at another time, you may cause another aircraft
to be misidentifed.
When you receive your student pilot permit it will have the restrictions,
401.19 printed right on it.
(1) When you are with your flight instructor, she is PIC.
(2) In Canada student pilots are forbidden to fly alone at night.
(3) Day VFR only.
(4) There is one passenger you are allowed to carry as a student pilot, and
that is a flight test examiner, for the purpose of your own flight test.
Whether you pass or fail, you are PIC for that flight.
This is an irritating question because it's unlikely that you would receive
light signals outside of controlled airspace, you wouldn't be looking for
them. But the operative phrase is CARS
602.31 tells you to "comply with and acknowledge, to the appropriate
air traffic control unit, all of the air traffic control instructions directed
to and received by the pilot-in-command."
602.71 says, in its entirety, "The pilot-in-command of an aircraft
shall, before commencing a flight, be familiar with the available information
that is appropriate to the intended flight." Everything. There
are plenty of flights you can make with no ATC clearances whatsoever.
The Designated Airspace Handbook lists coordinates of airspace and
navaids and the names and contact numbers of those responsible for them.
If you wanted to enter a particular area of restricted airspace, you
could look up the person to contact for permission. It doesn't list ATC frequencies.
A.I.P. Canada doesn't give
The 1:250.000 scale VTA (VFR Terminal Area) chart is
like a zoom-in map for high density areas. It lists frequencies and
altitudes that are not given on the normal 1:500,000 scale VNC (VFR
Navigational Chart). The CFS lists
frequencies, airspace and procedures for every airport in Canada.
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