September 23 (Sat) 12:00pm Out with Old Area Forecast and In with the New Graphical Area Forecast

Event Date: 
Saturday, September 23, 2017 - 12:00pm

For the past several years the FAA has been working on a replacement for the character based Area Forecast (FA) that was the basis for enroute weather forecasts. The replacement product for the FA is the Graphical Forecast for Aviation (GFA). In April of this year, the “experimental” version of the GFA was made “operational”. In July, the FAA and National Weather Service (NWS) agreed upon a three (3) month transition. On October 10th, the NWS will cease production of the FA for the Contiguous United States (CONUS).

In this safety seminar, we will explore the features available in Graphical Forecast for Aviation (GFA) looking at the ways to use it to gather information about current and forecasted weather to meet the requirements of FAR §91.103. We will also look at how this information is going to change weather briefings obtained from The GFA also has a domino effect on other areas within the FAA such as the Knowledge Test for Private and Instrument pilots, the FAA Handbooks, the AIM as well as others. Finally, we will mark this transition by ceremoniously burning the “Geographical Area Designator Map” to usher out the old Area Forecast.

Herb Patten is an FAA certificated advanced and instrument ground instructor who teaches private pilot ground school at San Carlos Flight Center. He holds a private pilot certificate with an instrument rating, has over 800 hours and flown into 111 different California airports. He is co-founder of the Bay Area Student and New Pilot Support Group, and a board member of the Upwind Foundation, famous for its Upwind Summer Scholarship Program. In 2015, Herb was named a Master Instructor by the National Association of Flight Instructors.

This event qualifies for FAA Wings credit.

Any questions, contact us at (650) 946-1700 or

San Carlos Flight Center is committed to promoting safety in general aviation through our evening safety seminar programs. Space is often limited so it is important to sign up early through the FAA event notification system at FAASAFETY.GOV. SCFC members may choose to watch the seminar live over the web at home. Contact your SCFC member service rep at (650) 946-1700 to confirm secure online access to any particular seminar.