Paro VQPR – Bhutan 9th November ETA 0700
Daylight…(you can’t land there at night).
You will likely be approaching via G348 which has an MSA of 16000ft towards the PRO VOR.
I suggest you guys look at the FSDG documentation that comes with the PARO scenery.
There is some very useful documentation in there, and in the appendix is the VOR approach chart (this is not included in Navigraph).
In particular there are pointers to a couple of real-word approaches at each runway which are well worth watching. You will also find some good Youtube videos about it.
Two approaches possible:
- A VMC only approach up the winding valley to runway 33.
- The more challenging VOR break-cloud to 33 and a hair-raising reversal through the valleys, with a very tight maneuver onto the runway 15.
High ground up to 13,700ft all around the airport.
Assuming a landing weight of 220T – (Don’t try it with anything heavier...so watch take-off weight from VIDP)
The landing distance available (LDA) is only 1985 m. At an elevation of 7352ft, a 220 tonne 747 will require MAX MANUAL BRAKING. Set the Autobrakes to MAX AUTO and OVERRIDE them immediately after touchdown with MAX MANUAL.
You can expect brake temps to be about 2 or 3 – which is OK.
There is a small turning pad at each end.
Pull the MAWEA audio CBs A3 and A4 on P7 to remove nuisance PULL UP warnings, and reinstate on short final for the landing callouts if you can.
Fly both approaches REALLY SLOW below 16000ft. As long as you are below 20,000ft you can extend flap and slow down. Have the Gear down, landing flaps very early and all checks complete long before you get anywhere near.
For the Break-cloud:
Descend to minima on the VOR approach. This will take you overhead the airport.
Have the aircraft FULLY CONFIGURED for landing (F30) and checks complete by PRO VOR.
The route is as follows:
TAKTI at 16,000 (you can hold here if required, 360 inbound, left turns).
Then descend via 360degrees/15nm to PRO VOR at 13,500
Overfly the VOR on 328 degrees and at 1 mile outbound from the VOR, start descent to Minima 12500ft
Continue on 328 degrees to 5DME. You should now be on a 1.7nm final..(far too high).
Allow the aircraft to overfly the threshold. Now start the visual segment..
DON’T USE AUTOMATICS FOR THE VISUAL SEGMENT - IT WILL END IN TEARS..!
TAKE EVERYTHING OUT INCLUDING THE AUTOPILOT AND FLIGHT DIRECTORS.
FROM THE OVERHEAD (not earlier) turn left to about 290 degrees. You will see a ridge ahead of you. Cross that at 11,500 ft and then IMMEDIATELY establish a descent rate of 2000fpm. YOU MUST MAINTAIN 2000fpm. You will get PULL UP and TERRAIN warnings.
As you cross the ridge start a 20-25 degree bank turn back to the right to about 090 degrees, maintaining 2000fpm. Don’t let the speed get away from you..it will want to increase.
You are turning into the river valley, and as such you have space to widen the turn out as much as you dare to keep close to the hills on the left. The river eventually leads past the airport..
As you continue the turn onto about 090 you will see a large white building with a red roof ahead of you. This is the monastery landmark that is mentioned in the FSDG documentation.
Head for this – keeping to the left of the river.
Don’t worry about getting low – you are actually above the ideal profile for the runway all the way! As you approach the point where the river bends sharp right you should be no higher than 500ft. You will then (and only then!) see the runway appear behind the hill on your right. You are less than 2 miles from touchdown.
Start a SERIOUS “S” turn to the right, towards the hill that is on short final. You will need to practically take the roof off the buildings there, as you roll hard left again to align on what is about ½ mile final!
These are SERIOUS turns! – 30 degrees bank and with a good roll rate. Don’t underestimate it. PSX can just about give you the required roll rate..
On landing you will find that you stop easily in the length available due to the large margins available in the data – so don’t panic if you are landing a bit long!
IF IT ALL GOES WRONG..head to the VOR up the valley and climb to 16000.
If you don’t practice this beforehand it will end in disaster!
You can do a mega job on programming the FMC, and this will enable you to land there using LNAV and VNAV with autopilot and autothrottle right down to about 1 mile final!
Set things up as follows:
FIX page – FIX VQPR with a line 290 and circle at 3nm, and another circle at 5nm. 3 miles is the ridge with 11500ft restriction.
Your reversal turn needs to be inside the 5nm ring..
FMC : select rw 15, then RW EXT of 3nm.
Put the following in the FMC:
PRO 328/1 160/13500
PRO 328/5 160/12500
VQPR 290/3 160/11500
HOLD AT TAKTI
Make sure you have 7400 in the ALTSEL at the start of the procedure to avoid unwanted VNAV ALT.
It may look disastrous in P3D but it DOES WORK (Trust me).
Landing via runway 33 is probably even harder!....
This should be strictly VFR only. If the weather is VFR you can just descend down the valley using distance to run x 3 for your height above airfield. Good luck with that!
I have devised a cunning FMC VNAV profiles which should get you in. I have tried it with success down to 300ft cloudbase (1) numerous times..
If you do this you MUST use autopilot, and DO NOT GO LOW on the VNAV profile.
Monitor RADALT. There is a particularly nasty hill at about 7 miles from touchdown. You should clear it by about 300ft.
Have the Aircraft FULLY SET up for landing from TASKI – In VNAV PTH, with the ALTSEL at 7300ft.
The RNAV (PW special authorisation) follows the valley. There isn’t a lot of room – but provided you have the speed back at VRef+5 it should work OK.
First of all select runway 33 in DEP/ARR with RWY EXT of 1nm.
PRO 310/2 /10500A
RW33 150 /7380
Ignore PULL UP warnings! (You might get one approaching the ridge PRO 310/2)
Expect to have to take over quite aggressively on final to turn onto the final runway heading at about 1 mile. I recommend you use the Flight Director Roll Command to line yourself up with the runway – it does a good
I think that it should be feasible to get in on either runway using the FMC and LNAV/VNAV as above with a cloudbase of about 300ft J
If you have to Go Around then runway heading until past the landing threshold (hill on your right) then fly heading 350 right until past 9500, then turn left heading 310 climbing to 16000ft.