Many students will be afforded the opportunity to go crosscountry during Instrument
Navigation training. This can be one of the more enlightening and enjoyable aspects of training.
During crosscountry planning and execution, you will acquire a more thorough and accurate
picture of Instrument Navigation Procedures in the "real world." No longer will you practice
separate and distinct maneuvers. Instead, you will perform maneuvers in logical sequence taking
you through the departure, enroute and terminal phases of your flight.
On a crosscountry, you will file and fly an IFR flight plan to a field outside the local area. You
will probably make an intermediate stop enroute to your final destination and remain overnight at
that destination. The return flight to homefield will often complete this stage of your training.
The types of flights you are scheduled for will, of course, be dependent on the desires of your
instructor, current policies of your command, and direction of higher authority.
The Flight Procedures you employ during crosscountry are the same ones you learned in
previous Instrument blocks and technically speaking there are no "new" maneuvers. However,
the environment in which you operate might be somewhat unfamiliar. You will be flying out of
the local area, you may utilize the high altitude structure, you might be operating out of a civil
field with a military tenant, etc. As you can see, although there are no new maneuvers, things
will still be different.
The Flight Procedures section will address some of the more significant differences.
Fuel Packets Prior to departing on a crosscountry or "outandin," pick up a fuel
packet. Your instructor will normally assign you this task. In the fuel packet is a "jet fuel
identiplate," used to pay for fuel at military bases. There is also a civilian credit card to purchase
fuel from contract fuel suppliers at civilian fields. Also included in the fuel packet are various
government forms that can be utilized for maintenance services and other bona fide official
At the completion of your flight, be sure to turn in your fuel packet with receipts.
FLIP Publications Make sure you bring the necessary FLIP publications to cover your
entire route of flight and any possible contingencies. Possible considerations include, but are not
limited to, low and high altitude enroute charts, high and low altitude approach plates, the IFR
Supplement, SID/STARs and area charts. Consult with your instructor to determine necessary
pubs. Check all pubs to ensure they will be current for the period during which you will be
enroute. It is possible that you could take off on a threeday crosscountry and have some of
your pubs expire at the end of the first or second day. It should be obvious, but ensure you have
at least one NATOPS Manual, and a Pocket Checklist for each pilot.
CROSS-COUNTRY PLANNING 8-1