Confused about flight track


I’m confused about interpreting this flight track:

The flight is listed as Anchorage to Kenai (AK). The track begins well after departing PANC and ends well before arriving at PAEN.

The route is “N/A” which, i assume ,means Direct. But why is the track incomplete between the two airports?

Thanks for info.


I am just going to take a stab at this hoping the FA gurus can tell me if I am right or wrong.

I THINK it is showing the portion that is IFR. If you look at N86RL going from MYAT to KPBI, you see the same thing. I know on that flight, the pilot only has IFR for so long since he is over the water, then cancels once he can.


It’s not uncommon to only receive position messages for aircraft when they’re above a few thousand feet AGL. For some reason the departure/approach controller’s computer doesn’t send the positions up to the national-level system and on to us. It’s less noticeable on longer flights.


So do I get partial credit? :smiley:


I’m gonna say, no, not really.

Most flights, including all air carrier flights tracked on this website, are IFR. The most likely reason you only get a segment in the middle of the flight is because thats the portion of the flight tracked in radar coverage. Now, I’m not sure why the flight isn’t tracked all the way from PANC, but it may have departure VFR and then called airborne to get their IFR.

I would suggest looking up the terms IFR and VFR, as it doesn’t appear that you fully understand what each means by your original statement. Don’t worry, its a little complicated, and often gets confusing when you mix in IMC and VMC. Neither is a factor in this case. Its all about how the aircraft is tracked by radar. Do a little searching and you’ll find links to the definitions of all terms used.





In a very roundabout way, that is exactly what I said. I know the pilot of that plane (N86RL) and I know how he goes to and from the “Tiki Hut”. On his return leg to the U.S., since it is so short, he drops his IFR, typically where his flight track ends (wow, what a coincidence). Also, hey, what do you know, the same thing for his flight TO MYAT. So in essence, I was right, maybe not for BobKK47’s original flight question, but it was a possibility

DM, I know what Instrument Flight Rules and Visual Flight Rules are, and what they mean. I know it is all about how the aircraft is tracked by radar, which means that when IFR is canceled, the track to FA ends. You know, it is that whole FA doesn’t track VFR aircraft thing.


You said the same thing. No, credit for you either.


Knew I could count on you Magnetoz…


I’ve been reading your theories on why flights get tracked partially and it just does not add up with my expience.

Yesterday, for example, I flew from Bloomington, IN (BMG) to Muncie, IN (MIE) and return, IFR both ways - the whole length of each flight. I had recieved my clearances from the towers before take off and did not cancel in the air.

However, if you look at N704SU for yesterday, 14-June, you will see no track for the BMG - MIE flight and only a partial track for the MIE - BMG flight. The take off and landing data and in-flight statistics are correct. So I don’t think it is a matter of when the flight became IFR in the system.