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Hours for IPs while in HTs?


New Member
I'm reaching the end of my first sea tour and am trying to decide on what set of orders I'm looking for next. I'm leaning towards HTs, largely to accumulate as much flight time as possible in case I decide to transition to civilian life. Can anyone who is/has been an instructor at south field give me an idea of what I could expect there as far as flight hours? From my time as a student, it seemed like it varied a lot with someone's willingness to fly CCX and/or triple bag during the week. Thanks for the help.


Well-Known Member
I'm headed that way soon. I've heard from my friends in 18 that you can fly 60 a month, and that's without trying too hard to build hours.


Land of the rising sun. Literally. There's no DST!
I've been here about 6 months and I fly in the squadron that probably flies the least amount of "triples" for the IP's and I have consistently ranged between 35-52 hours per month post HITU. Maintenance, weather, and scheduling will have impacts on how much you end up flying. Consider what the value is though of a single engine helicopter which doesn't hold a lot of weight for anything other than going back to helos on the civilian side, compared to the T-6 or C-12, for example. If you want to just crank hours out it's easy to get pre-po ops on the weekends and fly out of Peter Prince or KPNS; XC's can be done. I've done 2 so far and hoping to do more. Budgets limited me to do more earlier on, but you can expect about 14-16 hours in one weekend for doing one.

Randy Daytona

Cold War Relic
Super Moderator
As the HT's are undermanned, generally you could fly as much as you wanted up to the maximum 960 hours in a year or 100 hours in a rolling 30 day block (my best was 104.5 hours in a 31 day month). The limiting factors would be lack of SNA input from the VT's, mx issues and wx issues. If your goal is to fly medevac, oil rigs, or for the government, it is a legitimate way of not only building a copious amount of flight time, but also to build large amounts of instrument or NVG time depending on how you want your resume to read.

However if your goal is to go airlines, you are better off trying for the VT's - but the regionals are hurting bad for pilots so you will be able to go that route anyway.

While at Whiting, you may want to knock out your multi-engine fixed wing to add on to your ratings. Likewise, make sure to upgrade your commercial helicopter rating to an ATP. You will know the Jetranger inside and out as well as your instrument skills being at their peak so as an IP in the training command is the perfect time to get the top rating.

Uncle Fester

Robot Pimp
Super Moderator
There were always a bunch of helo dudes at VT-10. IP gets all the stick time and a lot of instrument time, plus low-level VNAVs and some basic form stuff. Low chance of the cone killing you, too.


Space Cadet
Lotta wisdom in here for the OP. While you don't have to make an in or out decision now, do keep your doors open. If you're not staying in a gray -60, be it FRS/WWS/NAWDC, flavor of CNATRA doesn't seem to matter. The -57s are old and a replacement is still not even decided on, let alone delivered. Give a hard thought to the VTs unless you're hardover on being a medevac guy and need to Helo Turbine time.

Any CNATRA squadron will have a chance to breakout in big groups FITREP wise if you want to stay in. In VTs, you can crank out 750hrs in a tour without working obscenely hard. Over 1k+ if you want to work a lot of weekends. That might not let you walk straight to a major in 3-4 years when your MSR is up, but it puts you closer than someone who flew the Sea Ranger. Or you can take the bonus, go to sea, and try your hand at O4 and DH.