Cpos From United States of America, joined Feb 2006, 31 posts, RR: 0 Posted (9 years 3 weeks 1 day 13 hours ago) and read 3759 times:
Just landed at Laguardia this morning on DL1907 from BOS. I've done this trip about 50 times in the last 15 months and always had the same question when landing on rwy 31. Never got a chance to ask the flight crew.
Is 31 visual only or is it ILS? It seems like the gear go down around 1800ft but then there is a sweeping left turn at about 1000 or so. If it is an ILS approach, when do you actually hit the localizer? Prior to, during, or after the turn?
FlyHoss From United States of America, joined Feb 2005, 598 posts, RR: 0
Reply 2, posted (9 years 3 weeks 1 day 12 hours ago) and read 3724 times:
The approach you're describing sounds like the "Expressway Visual" to runway 31. Runway 31 also has an instrument approach; it's a localizer approach (an ILS without the glideslope component).
When flying the Expressway Visual to 31, I always to tune in the localizer to 31 as a back-up reference to the final portion of the approach, but rarely notice it, as the approach often demands nearly full visual attention outside (to line up with the runway centerline and to (visually) acquire the VASI (Visual Approach Slope Indicator lights)).
N864DA From United States of America, joined Apr 2004, 259 posts, RR: 3
Reply 7, posted (9 years 3 weeks 1 day 9 hours ago) and read 3547 times:
As mentioned, there are two approaches to 31. The first is the the Expressway visual, which is used when the winds are not that strong (or else the approach is too dangerous). It follows the LGA VOR at R-225 degrees until the DIALS intersection then turns in the direction of the Long Island Expressway (hence the name) at about 85 degrees, then over the little inlet starts turning left to line up with the runway. By the time the runway heading is reached, the plane is almost at the touchdown point. It is a strictly visual approach.
The second approach is used when the crosswinds are too strong for the first approach to be safe, but runway 31 is the only option to land. It follows the sound, then makes a series of right turns, the last one a very steep 180-degree turn to line up with the runway, about 11nm away. I experienced that approach this month and I can see why pilots hate using it. The winds combined with the steep turns make it unpleasant to anyone on board.