Remember the days of sitting in a flight planning room with a sectional chart the size of a small car? As long as you had a pencil, plotter, calculator, and a soda, you had about three hours of flight planning ahead of you for a flight that was expected to take about an hour and a half. Fast forward ten years and now we can just input a flight plan on any tablet, phone, or Garmin Portable and within seconds we have a finished flight plan.
Did you know Garmin Pilot has a feature available which allows you to create your flight plan on the computer (via flyGarmin) and transfer it to your tablet or phone? As you may know, it’s rather simple to create a flight plan on Garmin Pilot. But to further simply the flight planning process and illustrate this feature we’ll take a trip to visit our friends at AOPA. We’ll take-off from the Garmin hangar at New Century Airport (KIXD) and terminate our flight in Fredrick, Maryland (KFDK).
To begin, put away your pencils. Our flight planning journey begins first by logging onto flyGarmin and selecting the ‘Flight Plan’ tab. On the right hand side of the page, the option to ‘Start a New Route’ will be available where a basic flight plan may be entered. For our trip we will enter ‘KIXD’ in the departure field and ‘KFDK’ into the destination field and select ‘Start Route.’ While there is a lot of information generated on this site, selecting ‘Save Route’ on the right hand side of the page will save the flight plan on flyGarmin.
Once the flight is saved on flyGarmin, it’s time to switch over to either your tablet or phone and launch Garmin Pilot. With Garmin Pilot open, select ‘Home’ and ‘Settings.’ On the left hand side of Garmin Pilot, select the ‘flyGarmin’ tab. Touch the ‘Username’ field and enter your flyGarmin username and password information and select ‘Link Account to flyGarmin.’ This will connect your flyGarmin devices to Garmin Pilot.
When flyGarmin and Garmin Pilot are connected, select ‘Home’ and ‘Active FPL.’ From the ‘Active Flight Plan’ page, touch the book image in the upper-left hand side of the screen which will bring up a list of saved or bookmarked flight in with Garmin Pilot. In the lower right hand side of the ‘Bookmarked FPL’s’ window, select ‘Sync With Server’ and a list of saved flight plans from flyGarmin will populate. Selecting any one of those flight plans will activate it within Garmin Pilot.
While I’m not suggesting you need to put your E6B up for sale, you can certainly let Garmin Pilot and flyGarmin do the heavy lifting and take advantage of this helpful flight planning tool!