Primarily for general aviation discussion, but other aviation topics are also welcome.
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#1519671
I wonder whether the standard 180 would work since you've climbed into cloud. I suspect that some kind of descent will be needed. Think I'd be even more terrified if I did a 180 and after a suitable period hadn't popped out of the cloud!
#1519674
As I have said previously, during our instrument training for PPL we are taught to 180 out of cloud, back to the weather we just came from.


And if you read my earlier posts you might realise why this can be a bad move, in my example taking off in one direction takes you into high ground and probably lowering cloud so a 180, possibly with further climb is a good idea, the other direction you are heading to low ground and the cloudbase is likely to be higher so descent straight ahead is preferable as the 180 is putting you back towards the lower cloud and high ground, this is why in the multi engine commercial world we have emergency turn procedures to be used in the event of losing an engine, your performance is degraded and you may need to turn to avoid high ground.
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By mo0g
#1519675
Dave_Ett wrote:I wonder whether the standard 180 would work since you've climbed into cloud. I suspect that some kind of descent will be needed. Think I'd be even more terrified if I did a 180 and after a suitable period hadn't popped out of the cloud!


My original suggestion was to 180, THEN start a descent.
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By mo0g
#1519676
foxmoth wrote:
As I have said previously, during our instrument training for PPL we are taught to 180 out of cloud, back to the weather we just came from.


And if you read my earlier posts you might realise why this can be a bad move, in my example taking off in one direction takes you into high ground and probably lowering cloud so a 180, possibly with further climb is a good idea, the other direction you are heading to low ground and the cloudbase is likely to be higher so descent straight ahead is preferable as the 180 is putting you back towards the lower cloud and high ground, this is why in the multi engine commercial world we have emergency turn procedures to be used in the event of losing an engine, your performance is degraded and you may need to turn to avoid high ground.


We are talking about a possible 'golden rule', if you fly near dramatically rising terrain where 200' lower after a rate 1 180 deg turn would put you into the side of a hill, then you would/should know that as a local pilot.

I also stated earlier in response to your point that if you turn in the circuit direction you will be on downwind heading and still comfortably within the ATZ. How many airfields within the UK have dramatically rising terrain within the ATZ itself?

In my view that exception does not make the rule to descend ahead.. where you could just as easily have that rising terrain.
#1519684
Mo0g,
I'm afraid we shall have to agree to disagree. I firmly believe that executing a 180 turn in unexpected IMC is likely to be more dangerous than simply reducing power and descending into the clear.

You fly your way - I'll fly mine.

I'll also teach my students to think about the least risky way out of the particular situation they are in, rather than following (any) mantra that a 180 is best. It might not be.

For a guy who is happy on instruments - why even bother with the 180 - just continue the climb and go en-route in IMC.

For the guy who is several years since he did his PPL "Instrument Appreciation" (or even one of the thousands who've been flying since before that was introduced to the syllabus) - I would always advocate "try and get out of it whilst keeping the wings level, or with minimum bank angle.

Nuff said.
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#1519687
I also stated earlier in response to your point that if you turn in the circuit direction you will be on downwind heading and still comfortably within the ATZ. How many airfields within the UK have dramatically rising terrain within the ATZ itself?


If you think an inexperienced PPL would sort himself out to still be sure of being in the ATZ then you do not know how it works in real life, there are plenty of airfields not far from hills in the UK, and a "golden rule" induces people to follow it even when it maybe the wrong thing to do! As far as local pilots knowing where the high ground is - it may NOT be a local pilot!
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By mo0g
#1519711
Lefty wrote:Mo0g,
I'm afraid we shall have to agree to disagree. I firmly believe that executing a 180 turn in unexpected IMC is likely to be more dangerous than simply reducing power and descending into the clear.

You fly your way - I'll fly mine.

I'll also teach my students to think about the least risky way out of the particular situation they are in, rather than following (any) mantra that a 180 is best. It might not be.

For a guy who is happy on instruments - why even bother with the 180 - just continue the climb and go en-route in IMC.

For the guy who is several years since he did his PPL "Instrument Appreciation" (or even one of the thousands who've been flying since before that was introduced to the syllabus) - I would always advocate "try and get out of it whilst keeping the wings level, or with minimum bank angle.

Nuff said.


This isn't about what I would do, but what a non-IR rated ppl holder ought to do if they climbed into cloud.

A current PPL ought to be able to do a 180 rate 1 turn on instruments, with no other distractions. Distractions like considering whether ahead and below might be ok, or not.

It is my opinion, that is all. When I discover these ATZ's which contain fjord like hills either side of, or within the ATZ, which would render a 200' descent back in the direction of the airfield suicidal, I will happily change that opinion. Notwithstanding the fact that these hills are as likely (and MORE likely in my experience) to be en route and not within an ATZ, and that descending ahead into unknown viz and then executing a 180 would be more hazardous, again in my opinion.

The proper golden rule is obviously to not climb into cloud in the first place if you arent happy with it.
#1519769
I am suprised at the number of people advocating what to me sounds like dangerous advice.

I have inadvertantly climbed into cloud several times, not usually on departure.

I fly an aeroplane that is very unsuited to instrument flying. I generally reduce power and descend. When it has happened to me I usually start descending before I have lost sight of the surface.

So, rule 1, pay attention! Keep looking out of the window and this shouldn't be a problem.

On all but one occasion, when I entered cloud while flying vertically upwards, I reduced power and regained sight of the surface in seconds. Ok, if there was high ground around, this may be a problem, but if there was high ground around I would know that, and it would already be a concern.

The advice to "continue the climb" sounds unwise to me, at least for a low hours, or non-instrument rated pilot. The fear of colision because you are doing something unexpected and not talking to ATC sounds like worrying about the wrong things too.

A low-hour, non-instrument rated pilot has climbed into cloud at below circuit height - where is the danger here? I would say the danger is of a stall-spin accident more than anything else.

So don't worry about ATC, don't try to out-climb the cloud, don't try to fly a 180 on instruments at low-level, reduce power a bit immediately you enter the cloud and pop back-out underneath. Sort yourself out below the clouds, in sight of the surface, and only then tell everyone what you are doing.

If you fly into another aeroplane while doing this, you are having a REALLY BAD DAY and are so incredibly unlucky that all bets are off anyway.

If you are flying in hilly-enough terrain that obstacles are a problem, AT BELOW CIRCUIT HEIGHT then you probably should have noticed the cloud below the top of the hills, or obscring the top of the mast before you took off - so Darwin has won again :twisted:
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#1519772
^^^^^ Wot he says makes a lot of sense to me.

Don't climb into cloud if you can avoid it but don't know what to do.

Don't take off if you are vfr rated (I know that's not strictly right, but listen) and the clouds are on the top of obstacles in the circuit.
#1519796
Unplanned .....plan not to !!. :?

How is it even possible without expecting to , Clouds have never been difficult to see , & all the ones I've seen don't have uniform bases , you usually get a bit of a clue ??.
#1519807
mick w wrote:Unplanned .....plan not to !!. :?

How is it even possible without expecting to , Clouds have never been difficult to see , & all the ones I've seen don't have uniform bases , you usually get a bit of a clue ??.

Sometimes you've got vague grey mush above you without any clearly defined bottoms. With an IR(R) I'm more inclined to keep climbing to find out where the cloud base really is than I used to be.

And sometimes there isn't a "cloud base" as such, visibility just declines as you climb - in which case you can quite likely still see the ground directly below, which is enough for a non-instrument rated pilot to keep the aircraft the right way up whilst they reduce power and drop back down again.
#1519939
You have to remember you are talking inexperienced PPLs here and I can think of LOADS of ways this can happen - just one quick example, Northerly departure to head South, all reports South are great and looking out the window to the South it looks good so departs not realising there is low cloud over the hills to the North!
I still say thisis where you need to have been taught situational awareness, hopefully this should keep you out of the situation anyway, but having got into it will then tell you what to do having got into it!
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