Garnett, Mauer, Vanska have FAA navigation codes too

The Federal Aviation Administration has announced that it is changing navigation “fix” names that honor Donald Trump.

When designing instrument approach “fix” points some years ago, an FAA controller made them Donald-Trump related. Fixes are just coordinates in the sky — points at which a plane has to be in order to be on course when arriving or departing.

Why? It’s actually one of the very few areas of whimsy in government bureaucracy.

Consider this chart that shows the approach and departure at Pease New Hampshire. Start with the route at the upper left.

In this case, the route the plane takes crosses…

ITAWT
ITAWA
PUDYE
TTAT

Give up? Here’s a clue:

Minnesota controllers have got a sense of humor too.

The TWOLF TWO arrival into Minneapolis, which starts in Iowa, honors all things Minnesota: Kevin Garnett, the Lynx, Gedney pickles, for example. We’re not sure about the SUKK “fix”. (You’ll have to click the image to see the various references, I’m afraid)

The WILDD THREE arrival takes you over the ZMBNI fix.

The ride into the downtown St. Paul airport might take you over fixes like MAUER and OSMOH, which should tell you there are baseball fans who like classical music watching over your flight.

As near as I can tell, there are no navigation points in our area named after presidential candidates, unless WEASL is someone’s commentary.

You can find other area charts here if you’d like to find some hidden gems.