Supreme Allied Gyro CFI
Reading between the lines, I have always interpreted this as reflecting a recognition that while helicopters don't typically need a runway, gyroplanes might need the very same strip of pavement (albeit less of it) that the airplanes are headed for, and that gyro speeds are unlikely to fit in well with the airplanes. Hence, avoid the typical pattern until you MUST join it on final to minimize conflicts and spacing problems. In practice, I fly lower and closer, inside the airplane pattern so that my time on each leg is comparable to the time spent higher, farther, and faster by airplanes, and sequencing is easier. Airplane pilots looking down toward the runway also have a better chance of spotting me that way than if I do some other avoidance method. I use an opposite side pattern only in my helicopter, not in my gyros.JR I've always found this more confusing than helpful for gyros- we "should avoid the flow of FW aircraft until turning final" - does this mean we can or should do what it advises specifically helis to do in 9.a.4 ie closer in and same or opposite direction traffic? lower AGL left traffic? is it specific approval to fly opposite direction traffic?
Other than airports that have comments in the AF/D to specifically avoid certain direction traffic for noise avoidance or to avoid flying over housing how would you know what "local policy" is?
Local policy is typically noise sensitivity driven, and if you don't find it in the chart supplement publication (formerly A/FD) you'll only learn it with a visit or a call in advance, or a complaint after you land.