Can a light sport pilot legally fly over the Grand Canyon?

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Lindenberg
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Can a light sport pilot legally fly over the Grand Canyon?

Postby Lindenberg » Wed Sep 21, 2011 11:41 pm

Can a light sport pilot legally fly over the Grand Canyon? I know you must stay below 10,000 feet or 2,000 feet above the terrain and also 2,000 feet above national parks and the North Rim is above 8,000. ?????

ibgarrett
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Postby ibgarrett » Thu Sep 22, 2011 9:29 pm

This is strictly from my understanding of flying through or around the Grand Canyon - so take it for what it is worth and a grain of salt.

It is possible to fly an LSA under LSA rules in the Grand Canyon area but not without a lot of prep work. There's a fly-in going on next month that skirts the outer limit of the canyons, but I'm not sure what all is involved.

If you buy the sectional for the Grand Canyon there's a lot of reading on it about special use, tour operators and whatnot. It almost appears as if the tour operators have locked up the airspace so that the GA just can't go cruising around in the area.

From my memory of reading the maps, there are traffic routes that patterns are supposed to be flown and at specific altitudes - sort of like a one-way traffic would be on a street.

If I were you and you wanted to fly through the Grand Canyon under the LSA flight rules, I would seek out a local pilot in the area to see if they can't give you a good run-down on what the rules would be. I am with you that it would be a total blast to fly through that area. I just haven't made the time to go down there yet (from CO).

Of course I ran into an old GA pilot who told me a story about his skud-running through the canyon only to pop up above the canyon walls, making a mad dash to the closest airport and then hangaring the plane as quickly as possible to avoid any sort of authorities. Needless to say - I won't be doing any of that. I like my license and follow the rules I will. :D

Brian
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roger lee
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Grand Canyon

Postby roger lee » Thu Sep 22, 2011 11:59 pm

You can absolutely fly an LSA over the Grand Canyon. It isn't any different from a GA plane. If you are on flight following you can fly out of the VFR corridors and if you don't have flight following you need to stay in the assigned VFR corridors. The Grand Canyon has it's own map that shows all the areas to be concerned with, altitudes and VFR corridors. It isn't that restrictive. We have done it for the last 4 years. The tour flights have their own altitude and routes to fly. You are above them. This is some of the best flying anywhere and October is a perfect AZ. weather month.
Then we take flights over Zion and Bryce canyon with breakfast at Bryce. Then 200' off the deck through Monument Valley and breakfast and last 100' off the deck up lake Powell and into Bullfrog resort for breakfast.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2bgUFrj7qsc


http://sportpilottalk.com/viewtopic.php?t=1855


You absolutely don't know what your missing and you can't fly anywhere in the US and see all the things this fly in offers. This is not like any other fly in you have ever been to and you should go. LSA from all over the US show up.
Roger Lee
Tucson, Az.
LSRM-A, Rotax Instructor & Rotax IRC
(520) 574-1080 (Home) Try Home First.
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drseti
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Re: Grand Canyon

Postby drseti » Fri Sep 23, 2011 9:03 am

roger lee wrote:You can absolutely fly an LSA over the Grand Canyon.


Roger, the issue isn't whether an LSA can fly there, but rather whether a Sport Pilot (or one exercising Sport Pilot privileges -- i.e., without a medical) can. If the VFR corridor altitudes are above 10,000 feet, and not within 2,000 feet of terrain at all times, then I see a problem.
The opinions posted are those of one CFI, and do not necessarily represent the FAA or its lawyers.
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roger lee
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LSA and the GC

Postby roger lee » Fri Sep 23, 2011 10:17 am

Hi Paul,

Technically your right, some areas a SP could make it and some not. I was skirting the issue some. :shock:
Roger Lee
Tucson, Az.
LSRM-A, Rotax Instructor & Rotax IRC
(520) 574-1080 (Home) Try Home First.
(520) 349-7056 (Cell)

ct4me
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Postby ct4me » Fri Sep 23, 2011 12:01 pm

There are plenty of areas in the GC that are out of the 5 special "no-fly" zones with 14.5K minimums. A portion ofCanyon can be flown at 8,000 or 9,000 (west portion). Technically, the 10,500 minimuns through the 4 corridors is too high for SP.
The whole Canyon Flying thing is being re-done. I'd like to see them recognize that all GA aircraft don't create the same amount of noise. Our mosquitos won't even register on the noise meter, compared to a bellowing Skywagon, or Mooney.
Tim
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zaitcev
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Postby zaitcev » Fri Sep 23, 2011 6:45 pm

Noise has many facets to it. I had an odd experience with it when I attended the Monterey Jazz Festival, with the arena of it located right off the end of a runway. I received a lesson in noise of all kinds of aircraft in respect to the sound of jazz performances. The "winner" is by far a Cherokee at takeoff setting. Surprisingly, a taking off C-130 is not all that bad, although it's pretty bad. There was only one LSA with Rotax -- if I indentified the sound right, mind -- and it was about half as bad as the Cherokee and only marginally better than Mooney. I would not want to rely on this comparison when facing FAA.

Even if you establish that a common LSA is in fact quieter than Mooney, the question is: do we want extended policing layers that compliance invites, only for purposes of one blasted Grand Canyon?

roger lee
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GC routes

Postby roger lee » Fri Sep 23, 2011 8:32 pm

LSA fly the same VFR routes as the GA aircraft. The tourism aircraft have their own routes and altitudes. We fly the GC every year and we don't have any issues. Their is no reason to be afraid to fly the GC. The charts are easy to read and follow. There is usually a 2K separation of tourist and GA aircraft over the canyon.
Roger Lee
Tucson, Az.
LSRM-A, Rotax Instructor & Rotax IRC
(520) 574-1080 (Home) Try Home First.
(520) 349-7056 (Cell)

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drseti
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moving thread

Postby drseti » Thu Aug 30, 2012 4:29 pm

Moving this thread to the FARs forum.
The opinions posted are those of one CFI, and do not necessarily represent the FAA or its lawyers.
Prof H Paul Shuch
PhD CFII DPE LSRM-A/GL/WS/PPC iRMT
AvSport LLC, KLHV
fly@AvSport.org
AvSport.org
facebook.com/SportFlying
SportPilotExaminer.US


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