If I'm flying to Catalina Island (KAVX) from John Wayne Airport (KSNA), which is 30 miles over water, what navigation publications are required to be on board for the route of flight?

  • $\begingroup$ The requirements for over land and over water are the same, you don't need any additional publications. Just do thorough planning and a full walkthrough before you go. Keep an eye on your temps and pressures like you ordinarily would, but above all enjoy yourself. $\endgroup$
    – GdD
    May 18, 2020 at 7:46
  • $\begingroup$ Just keep in mind that there is a right traffic pattern for Rwy 22 and that the sight picture is very different from what you are used to. Be sure to maintain the correct traffic pattern altitude, 2,602 MSL and watch for downdrafts on final. There was a hump in the middle of the runway that obscures the end of the runway so don’t freak out when it looks like you are running out of runway. I haven’t been there since they refinished the runway, so it may have been fixed. My passengers and I always wear life vests when flying there but they aren’t required by any regulation. $\endgroup$
    – JScarry
    May 18, 2020 at 14:08
  • $\begingroup$ Closely related. I'm not sure it's possible to answer this question clearly unless you also tell us the aircraft type (in case 91.503 applies) and if it's a part 91 or 135 operation (all part 135 flights are required to have charts on board). $\endgroup$
    – Pondlife
    Jul 6, 2020 at 4:00

1 Answer 1


You'll need the navigation publications appropriate to your flight. If you're flying under VFR, then you'll need the appropriate sectional chart, and should have airport diagrams. You'll need to be aware of the airspace and how to communicate and navigate in it. You should have taxi diagrams. For VFR flying, I've always made a practice of having the appropriate terminal charts, sectionals, WAC's, and airport publications. I have also always carried IFR enroute charts, as these provide useful information about communications enroute, as well as airspeed and navigation information.

These days, a subscription to Foreflight usually covers it, and I've flown all over using little else.

If flying IFR, you'll need appropriate IFR publications.

You should have a copy of the airport information, airport facility directory, or equivalent, etc. If you don't carry and reference the current data, and end up getting busted, you'll have little to fall back on as an excuse.

  • $\begingroup$ None of those are required. $\endgroup$ Jun 1, 2020 at 5:49
  • $\begingroup$ Perhaps you can explain why you think appropriate publications are not required. Do you fly under IFR? VFR? $\endgroup$
    – Will
    Jun 1, 2020 at 5:52
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    $\begingroup$ @Will - Most posters on this site will take the terms “required” or “legal” to indicate that there is a regulation pertaining to the subject. Unless the poster is flying under FAA FAR Part 91.503, there are no regulations requiring the carrying of current charts in an aircraft while VFR. The pilot only needs to show that they have somehow fulfilled Part 91.103. That does not mean that it is not wise or recommended that they carry current charts. Secondly, the FAA has discontinued the WAC charts. $\endgroup$
    – Dean F.
    Jun 1, 2020 at 11:57
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    $\begingroup$ @Will - Part 91.103 states, “Each pilot in command shall, before beginning a flight, become familiar with all available information concerning that flight.” It does not say that the pilot must have it onboard. You just have to have a way of proving you know the data. I do agree that at least an appropriate paper sectional should be on board every flight. Even if you have some type of EFB. That’s just prudent. It is not required under Part 91 flight under VFR unless you are flying under Subpart F. $\endgroup$
    – Dean F.
    Jun 1, 2020 at 12:19
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    $\begingroup$ @Will - I do agree with you that the pilot in question should carry everything you have mentioned. It is just not required for a light GA piston aircraft. $\endgroup$
    – Dean F.
    Jun 1, 2020 at 12:25

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