DescriptionFly and track a rectangular pattern by using crab angles throughout straight segments of the pattern, by planning ahead using different bank angles in order to roll out of turns at the proper position over the ground and maintain a constant altitude throughout the maneuver.
ObjectiveDevelop skills to compensate for effects of wind to fly a uniform traffic pattern by visual reference to the ground.
Procedure• Complete pre-maneuver checklist. Clear the area. Make radio calls as appropriate. Maintain 2300 RPM and approximately 90 KIAS. Note wind direction using locally reported weather stations, blowing smoke/dust, or groundspeed using the GPS.• Select a field. Select a rectangular field away from a populated area which is bounded on four lines by section lines or roads ½ mile to 1 mile in length. If possible, wind should be parallel to the long sides of the rectangle.• Enter downwind leg. Enter the maneuver on a 45° angle to the downwind leg and fly parallel to the field boundary.• Turn crosswind from downwind. When abeam the crosswind segment of the field, begin a turn to parallel the crosswind leg. To counteract the effect of wind, plan to continue turn beyond 90° and hold crab angle to track parallel crosswind leg over the ground.• Turn upwind. When abeam upwind segment of the field, begin a turn to parallel the upwind leg. Because of crab angle on crosswind leg, the turn to upwind leg should be less than 90°.• Turn crosswind from upwind. When abeam the next crosswind segment, begin a turn to the crosswind leg. Plan to turn less than 90° due to the effect of wind and hold crab angle to track parallel crosswind leg over the ground.• Turn downwind. When you are abeam the downwind segment of the field, begin turn to downwind leg. Because of crab angle on crosswind leg, the turn to downwind leg should be more than 90°.
ACS requires this maneuver to be completed 600-1000 feet AGL.
ACS Standards• Clear the area.• Select a suitable ground reference area, line, or point as appropriate.• Enter a left or right pattern, 600 to 1,000 feet above ground level (AGL) at an appropriate distance from the selected reference area, 45° to the downwind leg• Apply adequate wind-drift correction during straight and turning flight to maintain a constant ground track around a rectangular reference area, or to maintain a constant radius turn on each side of a selected reference line or point.• Divide attention between airplane control, traffic avoidance and the ground track while maintaining coordinated flight.• Maintain altitude ±100 feet; maintain airspeed ±10 knots.