As I returned to our home base in Frederick, Maryland on a beautiful Saturday evening, I learned that not one but two aircraft had been intercepted for violating the airspace around Camp David. These actions are costly to our whole community, and so, I have asked our team at AOPA to produce an easy to follow guide that helps all pilots fly through the area.
As troubling as it is to hear about pilots receiving and F-15 escort to an unplanned landing, it is also unfortunate to learn that some pilots do not enjoy the opportunity of flying in our area because they believe it “complicated.”
So, here is my technique:
If you plot a course from Martinsburg VOR (MRB) across to DuPont VOR (DQO), you will have a line running from West to East that keeps you clear of all restricted airspace (and runs over the top of AOPA’s home at KFDK).
On the West side, if you stay West of Hagerstown to the North (HGR) and Linden (LDN) to the South and overfly MRB Eastbound towards DQO, you will not enter the Camp David area even when it expands, and you will stay North of the Special Flight Rule Area around Washington and outside of the Class Bravo areas for Dulles and Baltimore-Washington.
Over on the East side, you have Philadelphia to the Northeast, but along the route from MRB, go past Westminster (EMI) towards DQO….you can go as far as BAINS intersection before DQO and stay clear of restricted areas. If headed South, Smyrna (ENO) near Dover, Delaware keeps you well clear of the restricted areas. And, to the North, I use Lancaster (LRP) and head that direction once past Westminster (EMI).
The key to all of this is the line from MRB to DQO. Fly it and you will find you can enjoy our area with considerable peace of mind! Follow the link below to see a map of the route that will help you stay safely out of restricted airspace.
Click here for current chart: Flying FDK area
And, if you do fly the area and have suggestions of your own, share them. Our AOPA team will be producing the best of the best ideas for publication soon.