Standard overhead join

The standard overhead join is something that you should be taught during your training, I was taught it using this diagram about 1 lesson before doing my cross country qualifier with no practice at all which isn’t ideal. As the second airport was closed I got 1 go at it before I had to do it for real the following lesson.
For this reason I thought I would do a blog post for anyone who is in training or people who just want a refresher. If you look below you will see a diagram of the standard overhead join and I will explain what is happening.

standard overhead join

  1. Over fly (blue line) – Over fly the numbers on the runway you want to land on at 2000ft to get to the dead side (the opposite side from the circuit traffic). You stay at this height so you are well above the circuit traffic.
  2. Descend (yellow line) –Once on the dead side you need to descend from 2000ft to 1000ft to join the crosswind leg at 1000 ft as I am sure you know, this is circuit height.
  3. Circuit (white line) – From here you just do your standard circuit, something that you should have a LOT of practice on during your PPL training. Remember you always announce or report your position in the circuit so on the downwind leg you announce downwind then you do your standard checks.
    From here you then turn base when you are 45 degrees from the runway and turn base and do all the configuring of your plane you need to (flaps & power).
    You do your final checks and report you are landing or request permission to land depending on if you are at uncontrolled or controlled airport.

So that is pretty much it, just always remember you have to descend on the dead side and that practice makes perfect!

Thinking of training via the modular route? Or started and still have questions? Then read The Essential Modular Flight Training Guide.

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