Brian and I briefed the (KABE) Allentown/Lehigh Valley Airport ILS RWY 6 Approach. Reading from the top down key notes are the localizer frequency, approach course, airport elevation, lighting, missed approach requirements, necessary radio frequency's and so on. The plan was to have me take off on runway six climb to 3000 and track direct to the ETX East Texas VOR. This is the point I will begin to fly the approach. No sooner I am wheels up at ABE I am in Instrument Meteorological Conditions (IMC). I climb out to 1000 and begin a turn to the north minding altitude, climb rate and attitude. I dial in the ETX VOR and the direct to heading is 240*. This looks pretty good and should provide an easy entry at the Initial Approach Fix (IAF) JISTO intersection. As I approach ETX I slow to 90 knts and extend flaps to ten degrees so that I can keep my airspeed steady and then follow with landing checks. Mixture, tank that is most full and finally landing lights. I cross ETX and turn left to a 169 degree course, no timer set here but a twist on the heading bug. I also twist the CDI heading to the localizer heading 063* for a reference.
As I approach JISTO I need to check the plate again to confirm my outbound heading ( I need a yoke clip) . The outbound heading I am looking for is 213* for 1 minute and then I'll make a Teardrop entry for this course reversal. At one minute out I begin a standard right turn to the inbound heading of 063*. As I turn then twist the heading bug the localizer comes alive and as I arrive at the new heading I'm centering the CDI needle. Woo Hoo, I'm doing ok so far. I am now descending at 500 feet per minute holding 90 knots looking for an altitude of 2400'. I get to altitude a bit quick and level off until I cross the SHAGY intersection, the final approach fix (FAF). At this time I can descend to a decision height (DH) of 594' until the Missed Approach Point (MAP). I start my timer as I cross SHAGY and confirm it's an even four minutes flat until MAP. Holding steady at 600' I see the lights for ABE along with the runway environment. I am cleared to land! I add in another notch of flaps and enjoy the wide runway for a nice landing.
We did a quick review of my flying and we discussed my scan technique and what I needed to do to address altitude changes. Brian said it looked like the scan included the correct instruments but I conscientiously made the decision to not interpret what my altitude was showing me. I tend to verbalize what I am doing and I would call out altitude to be corrected but just move on to localizer corrections. Strange how the brain works, especially mine.
Next up we are going to work on holds at an intersection. We reviewed the plate again and I answered questions as they were brought up. Missed approach procedures, pretty simple they are blocked out at the top of the plate giving you altitude and directions to follow. Ok, climb to 3000' via heading 063* and STW R-243 to MURDE intersection/STW 20.5 DME and hold. Whew, take a breath.
Let's see if I can break this down so that I can still understand it all. If I am going missed I can continue on the runway heading 063* while climbing to 3000'. Next I need to ID the MURDE intersection. This should be fun. I had previously dialed in the back up nav 1 the STW VOR frequency of 109.6 and on nav 2 I had the SBJ VOR in the standby 112.9. Not that I knew I was doing it right but this is how much rope Brian gave me. Ok nav 2 is dialed in and the heading is 309*. When I start my climb when going missed I'll twist my heading on nav 1 to 243* from STW and tune that in to read out on the DME (looking for 20.5). I should do a parallel entry to the hold but I like the teardrop and feel more comfortable doing it. So, as I approach I will cross the intersection when I see the needle swing on nav 2 that I crossed the 309 radial and my DME should read 20.5. I'll then turn to a heading of 030* for 1 minute and follow with a right turn to intercept the 243* radial from STW. Once wings level I'll start the timer again and head inbound for a minute. I was a tad bit fast inbound and as I hit the 20.5 DME the timer ran through 1 minute 10 seconds. Not to shabby for my first go.
I continued on for another lap around the hold trying to settle in with all the turns, times and whatnot. It gets overwhelming very fast but at least it erased all the frustration from my earlier no-go decision for Florida.
1.2 hours in the book and I am scheduled for Sunday the 13th. I'll be taking the week off to explore Sun-n-Fun and take plenty of pictures. I'll get to posting when we return. Until then, fly safe!!