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B6WNQX
Topic Author
Posts: 205
Joined: Wed Jun 28, 2006 12:28 pm

34,000 headed east?

Sat May 19, 2018 12:23 am

I searched but didn’t see much, but on AS736 climb out above 20,000 was bumpy to our planned altitude of 33,000. We then climbed to 34,000 where it was smooth. The altitude is according to flightaware, but my understanding is going East should be odd flight altitudes. Are there rules for exceptions to this or would this be a flightaware glitch?
 
GalaxyFlyer
Posts: 8070
Joined: Fri Jan 01, 2016 4:44 am

Re: 34,000 headed east?

Sat May 19, 2018 12:33 am

ATC can “opposite direction levels”, traffic permitting. Typically, hard to get in the thirties due to traffic. Nan Canada has a policy not to use them even above F410.

GF
 
B6WNQX
Topic Author
Posts: 205
Joined: Wed Jun 28, 2006 12:28 pm

Re: 34,000 headed east?

Sat May 19, 2018 12:42 am

Thats interesting and makes sense. Thank you for the response!
 
trnswrld
Posts: 1392
Joined: Sat May 22, 1999 2:19 am

Re: 34,000 headed east?

Sat May 19, 2018 1:21 am

Very common and happens all the time. Most often you see aircraft at inappropriate altitudes for direction of flight “IAFDOF” for other traffic or to find smooth air like in your case. Sectors just coordinate from one to the other and will be approved as long as they can safely handle the aircraft at that altitude.
 
Redbellyguppy
Posts: 245
Joined: Sat Apr 01, 2017 3:57 am

Re: 34,000 headed east?

Sun May 20, 2018 4:21 am

Let's say I'm cruising at 350. ATC might sometimes ask me... can you do 370 for traffic? If I'm heavy the answer might be no but I can do 360. If it helps the controller that might be a way to be at a wrong altitude too.
 
26point2
Posts: 1126
Joined: Wed Mar 03, 2010 6:01 am

Re: 34,000 headed east?

Sun May 20, 2018 4:56 am

If you can only manage a 1000 foot climb then perhaps you should say “No”. No? Make the other guy move.
 
Mir
Posts: 19491
Joined: Mon Jan 05, 2004 3:55 am

Re: 34,000 headed east?

Sun May 20, 2018 5:28 am

26point2 wrote:
If you can only manage a 1000 foot climb then perhaps you should say “No”. No? Make the other guy move.


Or you might get descended or turned instead. Going up 1000 feet, if it's possible, is better for everybody.
7 billion, one nation, imagination...it's a beautiful day
 
trnswrld
Posts: 1392
Joined: Sat May 22, 1999 2:19 am

Re: 34,000 headed east?

Sun May 20, 2018 1:42 pm

26point2 wrote:
If you can only manage a 1000 foot climb then perhaps you should say “No”. No? Make the other guy move.


Redbellyguppy’s example happens ALL the time and pilots unable a 2,000ft climb, but can do 1,000ft accept that all the time. They wouldn’t accept it if it was unsafe.
Controllers analyze many factors when determining which aircraft to either climb, descend, or turn.
So there are MANY reasons an airplane might be cruising IAFDOF and it happens all the time.
 
N766UA
Posts: 8401
Joined: Thu Jul 29, 1999 3:50 am

Re: 34,000 headed east?

Sun May 20, 2018 6:08 pm

It’s called wrong (or inappropriate) altitude for direction of flight. If approved, there’s nothing preventing it. It’s just a pain for controllers as they have to continually approve it with the next sector. It’s more common in sparsely-populated airspace for that reason, but can and is regularly used everywhere for a myriad of reasons.

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