Exercise 28: Navigation



In this lesson, the student will learn how to safely navigate from point to point using deduced reckoning techniques.




  1. Fully brief the student on how to plan a cross country flight, including:
    • Map reading planning and preparation
    • Calculating magnetic heading
    • Calculate leg distance and time based on an average groundspeed
    • Fuel planning calculations
    • Completion of flight log
    • Weight and balance
    • Aerodrome information and where it can be sourced
    • Radio frequencies and procedures as well as any significant airspace and their respective parameter limits
    • Filing of a flight plan
    • Weather briefing
    • Charts and Graphs (Limit manifold pressure, VNE, HIGE, HOGE, density altitude calculations etc.)
  2. Brief set heading procedures:
    • Synchronize compass to the DI
    • Turn onto correct heading and select a reference point
    • Take the time when flying over head the fix
    • State ETA
    • State fuel available and fuel required for the leg
    • Radio call
  3. Brief lost procedures:
    • Confirm last known position.
    • Allow sufficient time for reorientation by selecting a reference point on present heading, climb to get a better view, reduce speed and orbit to see if you can recognize any feature
    • Calculate fuel remaining, check navigation log for any obvious errors
    • Continue to read the map, working from ground to map looking for any distinctive features
    • If navigating using navigation aids, recheck selected frequencies and identify
    • Make a radio call, ask ATC or any other pilots within your area for assistance
    • If still uncertain of your position, land and ask for assistance.
  4. Brief VFR lost communication procedures
    • Continue to fly in VMC
    • Land at the nearest suitable aerodrome and report arrival to appropriate ATSU
  5. Ensure that he student correctly manages the cockpit and their responsibilities in order of priority (Aviate, Navigate, Communicate)
  6. Point out useful landmark features that will assist in solo navigation
  7. Ensure correct positional radio calls and ATC liaison at unfamiliar aerodromes
  8. Ensure that the student correctly manages speed and height to hold them accountable to their planned navigation figures
  9. Encourage frequent selection of reference points to maintain heading visually, without fixating on compass and DI headings inside the cockpit. Select multiple reference points inline with intended track to ensure the student does not drift obliviously off track in strong wind conditions
  10. Allow the student to be responsible for maintaining a good listening watch and lookout for other aircraft especially when flying through busier airspace





At the completion of this exercise the student will have a sound knowledge and understanding of the importance of adequate ground preparation when planning a cross-country navigational flight. They will also be able to source and utilize available recourses to plan their flight (AIPS, NOTAMS, TAFS, METARS, MAPS, Aeronautical, Frequency and aircraft performance charts etc.) They will be fully competent and confident with the required ATC liaison when flying into unfamiliar airspace, and be able to correctly follow the joining and landing procedures. They will display good situational awareness and ability to manage the cockpit in order to safely fly the exercise solo. This exercise will draw on knowledge gained from previous exercises, and upon its completion the student should be of a standard recommended for PPL Test prep.



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