Night IFR test and biennial flight review

Cirrus – SR22 – Archerfield – Redcliffe – Sunshine Coast – RNAV

Following a few night VFR lessons by 1st August 2018 the time had come for me to do a biennial flight review for my instrument rating so I decided to incorporate a night instrument endorsement at the same time. I did this with Adam Starr at Archerfield in another Cirrus SR22 with callsign FOJ. It was similar to MSF but newer and with more sophisticated avionics and glass cockpit.

We had a practice flight a few days before, taking off just after last light and carrying out a couple of instrument approaches at Kingaroy so Adam could check out I was ready for the test. It went well so I booked him for my test.

Once again we took off just after last light and climbed to 1500, orbiting over Archerfield while waiting for a clearance as the jets passed overhead on their final approach into Brisbane International. After a couple of orbits Brisbane Approach cleared us to climb to 4000ft (above our lowest safe altitude) and vectored us (ATC providing headings to fly on) over Brisbane, with a wonderful view of the CBD on the right hand side.

Toowong Reach of the Brisbane River and the CBD

We flew to Redcliffe in about 10 minutes, left our lowest safe altitude above the aerodrome and circled down to runway 07, did a touch and go landing, then headed off for Sunshine Coast airport. We passed over the airport at 5000ft and headed for the instrument approach waypoint over Noosa Head. The instrument approach went well, followed by a circling approach over water and another touch and go landing on runway 36. And it was back to Archerfield via a couple of waypoints out to the west of Dayboro, staying clear of the regional flights coming in from the north west. ATC allocated us the RNAV instrument approach into Archerfield. The RNAV is more precise than a visual approach and allowed ATC to separate us better from the Brisbane International arrivals. RNAVZ RWY10L is the most complex instrument approach I’ve done so far with a large number of step heights that you mustn’t fly below but also one that you mustn’t fly above (to remain clear of the Brisbane traffic). With the help of the very capable auto pilot it all went well however. I had to slow down a bit for another plane on the runway ahead of us but he got away in time and we touched down gently and taxied back to the hangar. Test passed for another 2 years and now with night IFR privileges as a bonus!

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