Since there is no other tutorial on the subject, and that’s what I’m studying right now in my IR training. I figured I’d put something up for you guys.
Here is an example of a standard holding pattern. The inbound leg will be the leg that has the holding Fix on it. The outbound leg will be the one on the opposite parallel side. This will come in useful when we get into diffrent entry types.
The basics of a holding pattern.
When instructed to enter a holding pattern you will either be given a FIX, VOR, or Airport to hold over. Then you will be instructed an altitude to maintain, and Right or Left turns for the hold. The right and left turns are based off of the Holding Fix not really your relation to where the hold originates on your screen.
Each leg of the holding pattern (inbound/ outbound) will be 1 minute long. In RL you can have several diffrent types they can be a timed hold such as the 1 minute or they can be a distance hold read by a DME. For simplicity sake we will just be talking about the 1 minute hold, the fix end, and outbound end turns will also be 1 minute long. Remember a standard turn is 2 minutes. Giving us a total of a 4 minute circuit.
Holding pattern entries
The shaded portion of this diagram is where you will be in relation to the hold for a direct pattern entry. The name is as implied a direct route to the Fix to start into the holding pattern.
For this entry you will over fly the waypoint. Goning the opposite direction of the holding pattern, and then turn more then 180 deg back toward the Fix. The shaded portion will be the entry area for this entry.
Tear drop entry
In this entry we are going to fly over the holding Fix, and enter into the hold on the outbound turn or inbound leg. Similar to a parallel entry but from the opposite direction.
Here you will see all the holding entry’s in relation to the holding pattern.
Holding pattern speeds AIM
Holding patterns are used for a variety of reasons. Weather, flow control, or just to give a pilot more time to decend. Ocassionally patterns will be stacked on top of each other. In these cases expect to enter high, and exit low.
Always wait for a vector/ clearance before exiting the hold.
So now hopefully you have a basic understanding of how a holding pattern works, and hopefully how to fly them.