Odd request from ATC

Today I flew in live weather, from Liverpool John Lennon to Newcastle, in England.

Flying over the Forest of Bowland area ATC requested expediate my climb to no less than 13500 feet and keep my speed to not above 185 knots.

I’m flying a Cessna 172 so this seemed an odd request, and possibly life threatening as I’d likely need oxygen at that height?

I did attempt to comply as best I could, climbing to 10,000 feet before being ordered to expediate my descent to 3500 feet.

Would this be a usual request for a 172 to climb that high or is it an ATC bug?

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that can happen if you select low/high IFR from the world map, depending on the minimum altitude of the airways in the flight plan. Stock flight planner/ATC don’t take your plane type into account.


If you’re using the World map to make the flight plan, try opening the Nav Log to see what cruise altitude is set; if it’s something ridiculous you can enter a more realistic altitude. ATC will use that unless you are violating an airway minimum restriction.

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Personal Comments

I flight plan outside the sim and save it as a .PLN file. This allows me to load a valid, vetted (for speed/altitude/routing) flight plan at the world planner. For the most part, the sim respects the plan (with some SID/STAR occasional oddities), and I avoid any behaviors as described by Topic Author. I use Little NavMap.

Even with a “hey let’s take the bird for a spin” VFR flight with no declared plan, I still use LNM as a moving map sectional with airspaces enabled so I can roam about without running into speed and altitude restrictions.


Thanks for the information guys, very valuable. I’m only a relatively casual simmer with no IRL experience so I wasn’t sure what was going on!

There are all kinds of issues like that.

Sometimes ATC doesn’t give you on time (or at all) instructions to complete a landing and will just fly you over the airport. Or call it so late you need to push the extremes of your airplane.

I just start the decent anyway when that happens and put up with the “you’re below …” calls.

We need an option for “Are you paying attention” in the menu. I’m not sure what the proper radio procedure would be for that in real life.

Flying VFR for the most part is just way more fun and relaxing.

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