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FAA activates new "GPS-Guided Routes" in Alaska to fly below hazardous weather

ANCHORAGE, ALASKA — The Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) is publishing 54 GPS-guided routes in Alaska, allowing pilots to navigate direct flight paths at lower altitudes to avoid icing conditions. The 30 new and 24 amended Terminal Transition Routes, known as T-routes, are part of the FAA’s Alaska Aviation Safety Initiative. ( More...

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rbt schaffer 5
This should be a good safety measure. Along with lower altitudes, not only terrain but winds and downdrafts and turbulence can be factors. I used to fly over the Rockies between DEN-SLC and DEN-PHX every morning and night in heavy twins experiencing mountain wave and orographic uplift producing quick icing (rapidly cooling air)... Knowing the mountain wave and rotor behind I would plan and ask ATC on certain nights to deviate on altitude both to allow the 2-4000 fpm sink/lift to gently decend crossing the ridges and then lift me over the rotor in the 13-17000 foot range. Sometimes you got some ice going up but know you would lose it on decent to DEN --- STAPLETON... Also you would not lose your dentures in the rotor turbulence. I'll never forget the red glow of the turbochargers through the cowling vents or the St Elmos fire up the windscreen, cowlings and prop tips... MORAL of story is study your surroundings on the nice days and prepare for THOSE other days. Think and prepare for different events and ask ATC who are very cooperative when you are slogging around rugged terrain. A few hundred hours in gliders sure helped understand this, but so should a good book on aviation weather. Fly Safe.
Roger Duncan 3
Nothing like experience to back up an opinion! Good blurb, rbtschaffer!
rbt schaffer 1
Thanks. This was Part 135 single pilot and a lot of IFR in snow showers in winter and mostly at night. Might add, don't turn on landing lights in snow to have a peek... And one night over Wyoming ran AUX tank dry on left side at night in snow over Elk mountain by Laramie... Those moments you don't forget. KOA on the ADF was great to listen to the Nuggets games to relieve the boredom and needle pointed direct SLC to DEN.


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