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VFR but no visual reference, is that still considered IMC?

Asked by: 2334 views , ,
General Aviation, Instrument Rating

If you are flying over water or a desert at night, with no visual reference and there is not a cloud in the sky, is that IMC? It's a pitch black moonless night with no lights in view.

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2 Answers



  1. Kris Kortokrax on Oct 21, 2014

    There is a legal interpretation issued to Joseph Carr in November of 1984 which posed this exact question. The FAA said that if you must fly by reference to the instruments (i.e. level flight cannot be maintained without referring to the instruments), then you can log actual instrument time.

    This interpretation is not available on the FAA web site, but it does exist.

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  2. psequeira on Oct 22, 2014

    Thank you Kris

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