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Long range flying?

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I recently got FS2K2 and have mainly been flying short VOR and GPS routes across Europe.I decided I want to do a long transatlantic flight and picked Schiphol Amsterdam - JFK New York.FS's "find route" using high altitude airways gave me this plan.http://forums.avsim.com/user_files/15587.gifFirst it sends me to Tunesia (A to :( using VORs and intersections, then I would fly a long straight stretch without any waypoints (B to C) and when I reach North America I use VORs and intersections until I get to JFK. (C to D)A few questions:-Why the long detour to Tunesia?It costs me 2,5 hours and 25000 gallons of fuel extra according to the flightplanner so what advantage will I buy with this?Are the plans provided by the built in flightplanner good at all?-How should I navigate the long stretch and to intersections?Is GPS the only way?If so, why put in VORs if I am going to use GPS anyway?And why use intersections between A-B and C-D if I am supposed to fly without them between B-C?-How can I fly most fuel efficient?Currently I tend to use more fuel than the flightplanner says.Am I flying at the wrong speeds/altitudes or is the flightplanner wrong?What are good cruise speeds/altitudes for the stock planes?-Are there good tutorials online regarding long range navigation, airways, intersections, efficient flying, etc?Thanks for any help.

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Brilliant post!Haven't a clue, but will be checking back to see any responses.I've done the same thing myself, and A to B had me lost as well.Love how you've shown the map - very cool.Well that's enough touchy-feely stuff, let's wait for the wisdom.CheersAllblack

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No clue about A to B. There is a freeware flightplanner I use called NAV 3.1. from http://home.adelphia.net/~fruitbat/Nav.html.It does auto-routing, great circle navigation, etc. The flightplan module is easy to edit. The AIRAC files included in the base downloaded are early 2000 and a few things have changed but it it current with FS2K2.On the US side of things, you generally need to follow the STAR arrivals for the larger airports. Dropping out of the jetways as you get closer, you follow the low altitude flightplans when appropriate.I use Radar Contact ATC and for high altitude flights I stick with the jetways and it automaticly vectors me with step down altitudes to what it thinks is the best runway or I can choose an appropriate runway before or during the flight. This happens fairly close to the airport however.In using STARS that you can plan in, you can find a common VOR for the high altitude and low altitude airways appropriate to your direction of flight and enter the STAR route into the flight plan.As far as your departure goes, if your departing point has SIDs, you'll want to follow those until you get to a jetway again at a common VOR or intersection.Intercontinental flight used LORAN and inertial nav systems before GPS was available. The problem, I may be corrected here, is for the longer VOR/intersection legs, GPS might take you slightly off the airways due to the differences of great circle nav vs. the linear local airway routes. I see this on a 200 nm leg I was trying at FL180 from Minneapolis to Fargo, ND., but at this short distance it still remained within ATC variation allowance.Their are charts available for Oceanic routes, at least pay types, don't know about free sources. Perhaps to get to those routes is why you had the A - B deviation but that is rather long! I would think that perhaps it might be necessary to fly short high altitude routes Eastward over the British Isles and then pick up an Oceanic route there. I believe the Oceanic routes are GCN plots.Do a search on Oceanic Airways and see what you can find, then edit the flightplan accordingly by using the FS drag method.In the May issue of Computer Pilot, http://www.computerpilot.com for info, there is an article about long haul flights including a downloadable flight plan (from the site listed) round robin from Chicago KORD to Beijing, China. This might illustrate some of the issues you are asking about.

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I personally think that the default FS planner has problems when it has to do long distance planning across an ocean. Others have mentioned a few nav planner programs they all work well.I don't know where you experience level is, are you familiar with NAT tracks?Also what aircraft are you using?You can probably get a good primer on Transatlantic crossings at one of the VATSIM sites. VAT UK or VAT Canadahttp://www.vatsim-uk.org/Oceanic/main.asphttp://bathursted.ccnb.nb.ca/vatcan/fir/gander/index.htmlThese tracks change daily based on winds, but then you only have to figure out how to get from Amsterdam to the European NAT entry point. Follow the NAT track across the Atlantic to where it drops you off in Canadian Airspace (Gander Oceanic). From there, there is something called the North American Route Program (NRP) route based on where you are going there are routes from the NAT tracks to the airport you are going. Follow the appropriate NRP which will lead to you the standard terminal arrival route (STAR) for the airport you are trying to get into.Looking at your map, and depending on what the weather is doing, most NAT tracks usually have you crossing the Canadian coast between 50-55 N so the FS generated track is a bit too southerly But then it starts off in Africa rather than off the coast of Ireland between 55-60N.After that a lot of them cross over my house (KMVL) (very high, leaving lot os contrails - probably 34-40,000ft in Vermont on the way to JFK.Cheers :)Woodreau / KMVL

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Another good place (they actually have the daily NAT tracks themselves) as well as the NAR routes:www.glideslope.de

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