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AntillesFlyer

How do you find Grass Landing Strips?

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Hi guys

Needing some advice on the best way to spot grass landing strips. I've started the 2nd Bushpilot scenario where I fly in a C172 from Serbia (i think) to Greece over 14 legs. No Gps just visual flighting it making it a good way to learn visual navigation. All was going well until the end of the first leg when I suddenly realised that all i had was grass for miles everywhere and in amongst it was a landing strip. I flew around until I spotted painted marker lines, so after a turn around landed in one piece. But is this normal (IE: flying around until I spot it from the air) or would there be earlier markers I've missed or something else to keep an eye out for. 

Taking on Leg 2 after work tonight.

Thanks

Brendon

   

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Brendon Isaac

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I think there's an options that highlights your destination in the environment you are flying in, this should help but admittedly it's a cheat...

I am a student PPL, and my home airport is grass only: in x-plane the landing strips are WAY too easy to spot compared to reality, however FS2020 goes to the complete other end of the spectrum, where grass landing strips are only discernible from the other grass (i.e. that is not part of the official runway) by markers that cannot be easily spotted compared to reality...

Is there perhaps a graphic setting that would alleviate this??

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I agree the grass airfields are much more difficult to spot in the simulator compared to real life. In real life in addition to the side markers, there are typically plastic cones at shorter intervals between markers. I had the issue when flying around in the south of France. I have open a big report on the issue.

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This is what is is like in real life. Airfields can be really hard to spot, especially grass ones. It's not uncommon for student pilots to completely lose sight of their airfield when they fly a first solo, when they are literally right next to the thing. Usually they spot it after a while, but you'd be surprised how easy it is to lose one in the terrain.

Radio beacons (if they are in range) can help (if you have an aeroplane with suitable avionics, which the 172 does have). Have a look on the main MSFS globe map to see if your target airfield has a radio beacon of any sort with which you might locate it. If not, you can still use a nearby other beacon by measuring the distance and bearing from the beacon to your target airfield and then when you are in the air, tune that beacon and get on the radial from it. With a VOR/DME this can be very accurate and if you can find two beacons which have radials that intersect on an obvious visual marker near the airfield, you can get in the ballpark with the radio, then pick things up visually.

Edited by Chock
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Alan Bradbury

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On 8/21/2020 at 2:31 AM, AntillesFlyer said:

from Serbia (i think)

It's all Croatia. 😉 

Serbia is completely landlocked.

Edited by Farlis

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26 minutes ago, Chock said:

This is what is is like in real life. Airfields can be really hard to spot, especially grass ones.

I don't disagree there, but my home airfield (EHHV) is basically a big square field of grass which has 6 official runways (13/31, 07/25 and 18/36) and I cannot tell the runway from the taxiways in FS2020 - which irl is definitely possible using the markers and even the landing marks from previous landings. IRL there's also a flashing strobe to indicate the active rwy.

Here's a picture as it looks for real. Markers for runways are clearly visible. I'll post a picture from FS2020 after work 🙂

grasmat-ehhv(2).jpg

Edited by DutchCourage
added pic/corrected typo
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1 hour ago, DutchCourage said:

...and I cannot tell the runway from the taxiways in FS2020...

You too can be Harrison Ford in FS2020! 🍻

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Mark Robinson

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I can't seem to post the picture of fs2020, apparently this is only allowed via URL or something, no idea how to do that as it sits on my drive.

Edited by DutchCourage
can't post picture

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Look at it as an opportunity to learn. In RL you wouldn't dream (unless you already had a lot of experience) to just fly off to an unknown field and hope for the best. You'd do some research, aka planning. Many of these places are private, so you'd also need permission and get a briefing by the owner/operator. With MSFS you can disregard the permission, but why don't you check out the field on Bing/Google maps first and look at it as a briefing.

Without trying to sound like an old fart, I started my aviation career in the pre-GPS days, in an area that also had very little in the form of radio navaids. Finding some of these remote strips wasn't easy. Most had no ground markings other than maybe corners, and if you were lucky, a windsock.We got there by planning, visual navigation and DR alone, something you can now authentically replicate with MSFS. A plus: you won't have to worry about soiling your underwear when you return home and having to tell your boss that you just lost him a grand or two because you could't find the bleeding place!

Edited by gunther
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4 minutes ago, gunther said:

Finding some of these remote strips wasn't easy.

Did you ever land in the wrong field?  😄  In FSX/P3D it's possible to land at the wrong airport if you don't use GPS, but in MSFS you can land in some farmer's field thinking it's your destination.

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Larry Hookins

 

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Just now, LHookins said:

Did you ever land in the wrong field?

No, but I did fail to find a place once. The fact that visibility was down to a couple of miles due to widespread smoke haze (more or less ops normal in Far North Queensland during the dry season/winter) didn't help convince the man, and he docked my pay anyway.

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I have to admit I've started to enjoy the challenge of finding them now. It adds a whole new dimension to the sim vs running out of asphalt airports all the time. Of course grass doesn't appear to soften up the landing any more but at least no animals have been harmed in my landings as yet 🙂   (Buildings -1, People 6, Animals - 0).

 

 


Brendon Isaac

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