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ILS Bremerton, WA

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I never really enjoyed flying IFR; I got my instrument rating because that was the next logical step. Once I got it, I seldom used it. This is a recreation of one of the times I flew IFR just for fun.

I start on the ground at Bremerton (KPWT) in the PA32. I set the weather for “fogged in”, then tune the NAV1 for the ILS and the NDB using the info from the map. The fog is thick, but the runway lights are bright. I don’t bother with the Seattle tower, I just launch into the clouds. At about 500 feet, I am surrounded by gray. I use the artificial horizon and directional gyro to turn left, then left again while climbing. I break out on top at about 2500 feet, then turn toward the inbound course. I intercept the localizer, but have a tendency to chase the needle. The glideslope indicator does not move, and after a while I guess that something is wrong. In and out of the clouds, I finally check the map and see that I have overshot the airport. Sure enough, the NDB is pointing behind me. I reverse course and try again. This time, once I pass the airport and turn around again, I see the middle marker light come on and the GSI needle comes alive. I get a glimpse of the lights through a break in the clouds, but I still chase the needle, getting into some rather steep banks. I see trees through the fog alarmingly close beneath me. Finally, I see the runway, but I am already over the threshold. I cut power, drop flaps, and land on the last third of the runway. Braking hard, I run off the end for only a short distance. I still prefer to look out the window, but I remembered enough to get down.

Virtual Logbook:
PA32-300 G-BDFC
ILS landing; IFR .5 hrs

October 20, 1997
PA32-301 N8213Z
From: PWT To: PWT
3 instrument approaches; Actual instruments .5 hrs

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