Flight Plan ATC Reroute Question (First ATCed Flight!)

Having stuck mostly to UNICOM flying, I just completed my first flight with ATC at both origin and destination, KDEN to KPDX, in a Citation Longitude. Whew, I need a beverage or something. When I started, only PDX Tower was online at destination. I was half hoping it would go offline, but to the contrary both Seattle Center and PDX Ground came online, so there was more frequency switching than I anticipated, but I got 'er landed and parked. Kudos to the ATCs for being patient with me. Great learning and confidence-building experience.

Question: I originally filed ZIMMR3 CHNGY DCT BOI J15 IMB DCT JOTBA HHOOD4 as my route, auto-generated in SimBrief. For what it’s worth, Salt Lake Center was online at the time. Denver Tower was the only ATC at my origin. For some reason, while still on the ground, he changed my flight plan to this: DDRTH1 DDRTH DCT DBS DCT BEAMO DCT JKNOX HHOOD4, and mentioned something about SLC. I’m not quite sure why I was rerouted. It was easy enough to change Simbrief/Navigraph/FMS, but just curious if I needed to have done something different when I filed the original flight plan. Was the new route to get me north of SLC Center’s airspace? I think I still would have gone through it even with new more northerly route, but SLC went offline shortly after takeoff.

Nice work on your first flight with ATC. Reroutes happen frequently, even with SimBrief. I don’t know where SimBrief sources its route data, but it’s not always the best way to get somewhere. As a controller, I’ve seen pilots file routes that were clearly weather avoidance routes used in the real world long after the weather had moved on. I’ve assumed they filed those routes because they’re what SimBrief spit out and they never really looked the route on the charts. Either that or they really wanted to fly 300 miles to go to their destination that’s only 100 miles away.

In your case, it’s possible SimBrief picked up one of many reroutes that occurs when weather blocks a departure gate out of D01. It’s a valid route, but it’s going to require that at some point you have to cross over all the D01 arrivals coming in via the NW STARs. The route that DEN assigned you is better optimized for keeping you away from those Denver area arrivals.

Keep it up, enjoy the flying and the dynamic nature of this hobby. Reroutes are going to happen frequently, especially when you go into airports with runway-dependent STARs.

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Thanks, Dustin. I believe there was a lot of traffic around KSLC at the time, and my original route took me fairly close to there. I guess I was a bit confused as KDEN Tower seemed to imply that my originally-entered route should have taken that into account? I’ll err on the side that I misunderstood him…super nice controller and very helpful to this newbie, don’t get me wrong.

In any event, unless there’s a better way, I’ll continue to use Simbrief to generate plans, and Delivery can reroute me as needed.

Fun stuff! I was getting a bit bored with 1400 hours of FS2020 without any ATC whatsoever, so this is certainly adding to the experience to say the least.