LOW-LEVEL AND TACTICAL FORMATION
Descent: Transition level. One thousand feet above assigned altitude. One thousand
feet above initial approach fix altitude or holding altitude. One hundred feet above
procedure turn and final approach fix altitude.
Nonprecision approaches: One hundred feet above minimum descent altitude
(MDA). "Minimums" at MDA.
"Runway in sight." Call when the runway environment is in sight. Do not call too
soon when obstructions to vision, such as fog, haze, or low stratus clouds, are present.
"Go-around." Call at missed approach point if the runway environment is not in
Precision approaches: One hundred feet above decision height (DH). "Land." Call
at DH if the runway environment is in sight and the aircraft is in a position for a
normal landing. "Go-around." Make this call at decision height if the runway
environment is not in sight or if the aircraft is not in a position for a normal landing.
Low-levels: "Climb." Make this call anytime the decision height (DH) light comes
on during low-level flight.
Deviations. Tell the other pilot when altitude deviates 100 feet from desired altitude
if no attempt is being made to correct the deviation. Any crewmember seeing a 200-
foot altitude variation or potential terrain or obstruction problem will tell the pilot
104. PREFLIGHT PLANNING
The success of LL depends almost entirely on thorough preflight planning. The primary method
of LL navigation is dead reckoning (DR). DR is simply holding a constant heading and airspeed
for a specified time. When planned correctly, DR navigation is virtually infallible with the
exception of unforeseen winds. On low-level sorties, navigate using DR and make corrections
by referencing ground checkpoints.
The following is a step-by-step outline for planning a LL mission. Use it as a checklist when
planning your missions. An in-depth discussion of each step follows the checklist.
Select an appropriate LL route. Consult FLIP AP/1B for possible published military
training routes (MTRs), or select a locally developed route. Estimate the fuel required and
schedule the route (if an MTR).
Check the weather (preliminary forecast) and NOTAMS.
Choose the appropriate chart.
Mark the published points and draw the route corridor (if an MTR).
LOW-LEVEL NAVIGATION 1-3