Now that you have visualized the holding pattern, it is time to visualize how to enter the hold. There are three standard hold pattern entries. Which one you choose depends on the angle at which you are approaching the holding pattern.
If you are already tracking in the general direction of the inbound leg, then you may use the direct entry. In this entry, you fly directly to the holding fix and turn to the outbound heading. In the example, if we were approaching Columbia from anywhere in the southeast through west, we could just cross the VORTAC and make a right turn to the outbound heading of 210 degrees. Once abeam the VORTAC outbound, start a timer and fly outbound for one minute. After this minute, make another right 180 degree turn to intercept the 210 radial inbound to the VORTAC.
If you are able to determine the abeam point, use this to time your outbound leg. Otherwise, it is also acceptable to start your outbound time at the completion of your outbound turn.
If we were approaching the VORTAC from the northeast, we would use a parallel entry. In this entry, we would fly directly to Columbia, then take up a 210 heading for 1 minute. After the minute is up, we make a turn toward the holding fix so as to stay inside the holding pattern area. In this case, a left turn is required. We turn more than 180 degrees in order to allow for the interception of the inbound radial. In the example, we could turn left to a 360 heading. That gives us a 30 degree intercept.
If we were approaching Columbia from the northwest, a teardrop entry would be more appropriate. For a teardrop entry, we would fly cross the VORTAC and then turn to a heading 30 degrees off of the holding radial. In this case, we would take a 180 heading for one minute. After the minute is up, turn right to intercept the 210 radial inbound.
Correcting for Wind
Once in the hold, it is time to correct for the wind. The goal is to stay inside the prescribed holding area and fly the inbound leg for one minute. To accomplish this, note the inbound wind correction and triple it for the outbound leg. If your note your wind correction to be 8 degrees left on the inbound leg, correct 24 degrees left on your outbound leg. When the outbound wind correction is right, you will roll out of your inbound turn right on your inbound radial without overshooting or coming up short.
Time the inbound leg and adjust your outbound timing, as necessary. If you're inbound leg is 45 seconds long, fly outbound longer. If the inbound leg takes 90 seconds, then shorten your outbound leg to less than a minute.
Each time around the holding pattern, bracket the outbound heading and timing until you are rolling out right on the inbound radial and your inbound leg takes exactly one minute.
In the hold, turns should be made at standard rate.