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Your Best/Most Memorable Trip

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  • Your Best/Most Memorable Trip

    As the topic states, what is your best/most memorable trip you have ever taken? This trip could include a flight, spotting/photography trip. What planes did you see on your trip? Also, what made this trip so special?

    I will get this topic started off with my most memorable trip. I had just started taking pictures of planes in 2000, and while I had taken short trips to airports around Toronto such as Hamilton, Detroit and Buffalo, I had never really done a major spotting/photography trip. So that is why my first major spotting/photography trip would go down as my most memorable.

    I was scheduled to fly out of Toronto to Vancouver on July 22, 2001 and this would by my first time flying on an Air Canada Airbus 340. I got to the airport early for this flight, as it was to depart at 8:45am. I checked in and walked up to my gate to find my A340 C-GDVW (fin 909) waiting at the gate parked alongside C-GBQM (another Air Canada A340 departing to Vancouver half an hour before my flight).

    While waiting at the gate about an hour prior to boarding, I noticed Air Canada's special "Trans Canada Airlines" A319 taxiing out towards Runway 23. Little did I know at that time, I'd see that same plane in Vancouver later that afternoon!

    Boarding began at 8:20AM, and I headed to my seat located in Row 20A, which is right next to the wing, and right over the main landing gear. Pushback was delayed for 9:00AM since the baggage was not loaded on time. Following our pushback, we headed out towards Runway 23. Once we began to taxi out towards Runway 23, we noticed the overhead of the cabin begin to shake, and the tv monitors were rattling over the seats. Not exactly what I expected from the A340. Once in position on Runway 23, we were cleared for takeoff and were airborne by 9:15AM, half an hour late. We were cleared up to 39,000 feet for the flight, and that would be our cruising altitude. Once we reached our cruising altitude, meal service began. For the flight, meal service included a breakfast of either a quiche or an omelette, fruit, a bread roll, orange juice, and coffee or tea. This was really nice, since it seems most airlines are serving less food, especially in economy class. Following breakfast, I asked if I could visit the flight deck, and was allowed to go up to the flight deck to talk to the pilots. I took a few pictures of the flight deck, although I found it a little strange that I wasn't able to use flash for the pictures, since all the other airlines allowed me to use flash. After being in the flight deck for about 15 minutes, I returned to my seat, and even though a movie was being shown, I decided to just look out the window at the landscape below. After an uneventful 3 and a half hours, snacks were handed out. We ended up getting the regular pretzel and Coke service, not exactly the biggest snack service, but it was ok. Soon after, we began our descent into the British Columbia area, which began to get overcast. Once passing through the clouds, we went through some turbulence caused by the heavy clouds. We broke through the clouds at about 4,000 feet, and were cleared for the approach to Runway 08L in Vancouver. After touching down on Runway 08L, we taxiied back to the terminal, and headed to Gate C50. Despite the fact that we departed half an hour late, we still managed to make up the time in the air, and arrived right on time. Once off the aircraft, I picked up my bags, and went to do some spotting. I got some pictures of Alaska Air's special "Alaska" 737, China Airlines 747-400, Balair 767-300, Air Pacific 737-800, Japan Airlines 747-400, British Airways "Colum" Irish World Tail, and Air Canada's special "Team Canada 2001" 747-400.

    July 23 - Vancouver
    I went to the airport to do some more spotting, and finally the weather wasn't too bad! I ended up getting pictures of Cathay Pacific's special "Spirit Of Hong Kong" 747-400, Eva Air 747-400, Singapore Airlines A340, Japan Airlines 747-400, Air China 747-400, and British Airways "Wings" Denmark World Tail.

    July 24 - Vancouver
    The weather was perfect, and I couldn't ask for better planes! I shot Philippines Airlines A340, Cathay Pacific 747-400 in regular colours, Japan Airlines 747-300, Horizon Air Dash 8-400 and CRJ-700, Skywest's "Salt Lake City 2002" special colours, Canadian Regional F28 in old colours, Dash 8-100 in transitional colours, and tons of Air BC Dash 8's and BAe 146's.

    July 25 - Seattle
    I left Vancouver early in the morning and headed to Seattle. I arrived in Seattle around 10:00am, and went to the United Airlines Cargo employees parking lot, where I shot a US Airways A321 and Horizon Air F28 and Dash 8-400 before getting kicked out of the parking lot. I then headed over to the south end of the airport, where I ended up shooting Southwest's special "Silver One" 737. Soon after, they switched runways and I headed over to the north side of the airport, where I got some pictures of China Eastern Cargo MD11, Martinair Cargo MD11, American Airlines MD80 in ex-Reno Air colours, Alaska Air's special "Alaska" 737.

    July 26 - Portland
    I left Seattle and headed down to Portland where I only stayed for two hours since the airport wasn't too busy, and since it's a long drive down to San Fransisco. I took a few pictures of United Shuttle 737's, but other than that, there wasn't too much at their airport.

    July 27 - San Fransisco
    I spent most of the day on the road, since it's about an 8 hour drive to San Fransisco, but it was a very interesting drive which took us through lots of mountains. The scenery was really nice (I really love mountains and hills), and spent lots of time going through the mountains. As nice as the scenery was going from Portland to San Fransisco, my favourite place is still British Columbia. I'd have to say that BC is the nicest province in Canada, and Vancouver is definitely one of the nicest cities I have ever been to. I also did some sightseeing in San Fransisco before getting to the airport. Once at the airport, I ended up shooting ATA's special "Pleasant Hawaiian Holidays" L1011, which happened to be the same one that I shot in Indianapolis a year earlier! I also got Virgin Atlantic's 747-200, British Airways 747-400 in "Union Flag" colours, and Air France 747-400.

    July 28 - San Fransisco
    I spent the entire day at the airport and ended up getting pictures of Swissair MD11, Korean Air 777-200, National Airlines 757, Singapore Airlines A340, ANA 777-200, Frontier 737's, and US Airways A319, A320, and A321.

    July 29 - San Jose
    I only spent part of the afternoon at the airport in SJC, but the weather was perfect, and I shot Southwest's "New Mexico One" and "Lone Star One" special colours. I also got Southwest's new colours, and Delta's special "Salt Lake City 2002 Olympics" 757-200.

    July 31 - Los Angeles
    Los Angeles sure is a great airport, and I got pictures of a few Qantas 747-400's, Hawaiian DC-10, Delta 767-400, Delta MD11, Air New Zealand 747-400, Air Pacific 747-200, Alitalia MD11, America West 737, Asiana 747-400, and Mexicana's "Retrojet" 757-200.

    August 3 - Los Angeles
    As my trip was nearing an end, I spent my day at the airport, and got pissed off because it was so foggy in the morning. The weather was just awful for the past few days in Los Angeles, so I took a few days to do some sightseeing around the Los Angeles area. I usually don't take pictures in bad weather, but since I'm not sure when I'll be back in L.A., I had to take the pictures anyways. The weather finally cleared around noon, and I was able to get shots of Mexicana's special "Retrojet" A320, Egypt Air 777-200, Atlas Air 747-400, Lan Chile 767-300, Southwest "Shamu One" special colours, Air New Zealand 747-400, Varig MD11 and 767-300, Air France 777, and Korean Air 747-400.

    August 4 - Los Angeles
    My last full day in Los Angeles was mostly spent at the airport, and I sure had a great last day. Once again the weather wasn't great, but I had to shoot whatever I needed. I got pictures of China Southern 777, Thai 747-400, America West "Teamwork" special colours 757-200, El Al 777-200, Virgin Atlantic old colours 747-200 and A340, Varig 767-200, KLM 747-300, and Singapore Airlines 747-400.

    August 5
    Air Canada Flight 790 Los Angeles-Toronto
    Airbus A320 C-FTJQ (fin 215)
    Departure Time: 8:20am
    Flying Time: 4 hours 36 minutes
    Seat 23A

    Well, all great trips have to come to an end some time, although it sure seemed like this trip went by way too fast. Shooting 41 rolls of film in two weeks sure made this trip great! I woke up at 4:00am, and went to return the rental car. I was then bussed over to Terminal 2, and I checked in, and headed towards the gate where my plane (C-FTJQ) was parked. The sun was just beginning to rise, but I couldn't take any pictures since the airport terminal had double glass, making it impossible to shoot any planes taxiing past. Boarding began at 7:30, and I went to my seat, located just behind the left wing. Once we were cleared for takeoff on Runway 24L, we were airborne, and quickly made a left turn which would give a nice aerial view of the airport, and of Downtown Los Angeles. This was one of the nicest scenic flights that I have been on, since most of the way down past California into Nevada, we had great views of mountains, and I took lots of in-flight pictures of the mountains from the air. If I'm not taking pictures of planes, I love taking pictures of mountains. After California, our Captain informed us that we passed by Death Valley, and then I had a great view of Downtown Las Vegas from the air, and I took more pictures. Once we were over Nevada, meal service began, and we were given breakfast. We had a choice of omelette or egg McMuffin, a bread roll, fruit, orange juice, and coffee. I chose the omelette, and it was actually quite good for airline food! After the meal service, and after reaching our cruising altitude of 33,000 feet for the flight, I asked to visit the flight deck again to visit the pilots. I took a picture of the flight deck, and talked to the pilots for a while before going back to my seat. By the time I got back to my seat, we were flying over Nebraska, which is mainly like the Prairies, and the pilots described this area as being similar to Saskatchewan. Once we entered Michigan, snack service began, and we were given pretzels with Coke or Coffee. About four hours and 20 minutes into the flight, we began our descent into Toronto. We were given Runway 24R into Toronto, which would take us over Pearson International in the downwind for Runway 24R. I got a great view of the airport when we were on the left base for the downwind, and I took some pictures of the airport from the air. I also got a great view of Downtown Toronto, and passed nearby the CN Tower and Skydome... what a great view! We flew right over Downsview airport, and were lined right up for Runway 24R. We arrived at 4:15pm Eastern Time, about 20 minutes late, ending a great flight, and the most memorable trip I have had so far.

    If you've managed to read everything I have written, and haven't fallen asleep while reading this, I'd like to thank you for taking the time to read this, hope you all enjoyed this report! Now that you've read my report, I'd like to know what your most enjoyable trip was like!


  • #2
    Re: Your Best/Most Memorable Trip

    Originally posted by Darcy
    and while I had taken short trips to airports around Toronto such as Hamilton, Detroit and Buffalo
    Hey Darcy, how often are you in Buffalo?


    • #3
      Hi Scott,

      I've actually only taken two or three trips to Buffalo, I haven't been down to Buffalo since 9/11 as I'm a little cautious of airport security in the U.S., and I don't really know how security is in Buffalo, especially after hearing about a guy getting taken down to the police station in Buffalo for questioning after spotting/photography at Flying Tigers. I would love to come down to BUF again some time this year if I'd know security isn't too bad on spotters/photographers. It's getting hard enough finding places to spot in Toronto, airport security and the police seem to be getting more strict with certain spotting locations around here.



      • #4
        Before June 3, 2003, I would have to say a trip to India in November 1999 that my Dad and I took. I got to skip school for the entire month of NOvember, since it was for a religious purpose.

        After 6-3, I would ahve to say MY Europe trip with a few best friends. Went to Paris, Florence, Rome, Pisa, and Vienna. Was really nice. WE flew Air France from ATL-CDG, and AF return was VIE-CDG-ATL.

        Maybe the two are a tie...but those are my top best!


        • #5
          Hey Darcy,

          Drop me an Email if you ever come down, i can try and meet up with you. I haven't been hasseled by security one bit by Flying Tigers. I think that it has something to do with that terror alert level. I used to spot out by UPS before i got the camera and it seemed that they kicked me out when it was orange or above. But now thats it down to yellow i haven't even been talked to at Flying Tigers.


          • #6
            My best flight I can remember was with a Virgin Express 737-400 from La Palma (GCLA) to Brussels (EBBR) on November 10, 1999. We had a very friendly female captain who let anybody into the cockpit that wanted to (where are those days... ). I rembember I was up front when we flew over Paris. That must have been the most beautiful sight I've ever had from a plane...
            If talking about planes, my first flight on a 767 to Punta Cana (MDPC) in 1997 was pretty memorable.
            Hopefully, I'll have another unforgettable experience in two weeks, when I'm flying to JFK on a Delata 767!


            My JetPhotos.Net pictures


            • #7
              My best one was my trip 2002 UIO-CCS-FRA and FRA-CCS-UIO.

              JULY 6th 2002: D-AIGR

              OUR PLANE TO FRA


              From CCS to FRA we were about one hour from FRA and i satnd up, go to the back gallerie and i start to see out the A340 dorr window. Im cool when I see this HUGE MASSIVE Lufthansa 747-400 come through and take over us. I mean it was huge, and it was coming faster than us. I run to get my cam, when i get there it was gone!

              Then, like 10 mins before landing i see it through my window again. this time it was there, huge, going under us and i took out the CAMCORDER and recorded every single instant. I took a few shot. The video is amazing!

              Then we landed and we taxied to our gate and by my window i see a 747 land right beside us. I guess it was that one. WOW! Amazing. Any body see us?

              The 747 afterwards taken from the visitors terrace.


              August 10th 2002: D-AIGO

              we went to the visitors terrace again and we got, BUZZ AVRO-RJ100, UZBEKHISTAN 757-200, ALITALIA MD-83, LUFTHANSAS, SINGAPORE AIRLINES 747-400, AIR CANADA A340-300 Star Alliance colors!, AIR QUATAR A300-600, TUNIS AIR A320,


              Awesome. Then our flight was cool. A nice day a caracas and all we could see was the coast and the mountains. Then it was all fogy behind that. Definitely the best trip.
              Lufthansa is the BEST!


              • #8
                My best trip was from Boston to Paris on American in 2001. Everything was excellant.
                Meridian 777


                • #9
                  Originally posted by SWA733Captain
                  Hey Darcy,

                  Drop me an Email if you ever come down, i can try and meet up with you. I haven't been hasseled by security one bit by Flying Tigers. I think that it has something to do with that terror alert level. I used to spot out by UPS before i got the camera and it seemed that they kicked me out when it was orange or above. But now thats it down to yellow i haven't even been talked to at Flying Tigers.
                  Hi Scott,

                  That sounds good, I'll e-mail you if I decide to come down some time. I'll probably go to the Flying Tigers spot and hope they don't mind me staying there. I think I know the UPS spot you're talking about. Hopefully the terror alert level stays very low!!



                  • #10
                    mine most memorible trip was on a BAe 146-200 from CNS - PER via AYR and ALI there was eight people on the plane and i sat the in cockpit talking and flying the plane yes well um sitting in the plane and pressing a few nobs when they told me! but yeah that was my most, i cam away with everything , 20 safety cards! coushin, blanket and a Ansett cap aswell keyring, pen and a laptop bag!!!!!! oh and lots of pics which i took
                    Some people in today's society are so thick!


                    • #11
                      my most memorable is easy. About 3years ago i was fourtuante enough to sit jumpseat on Westjet 737-200 from YOW-YHM-YWG-YYC-YEG. It was awesome to be able to get so many landings and takeoffs in the jumpseat. The crew was really awesome as well. Co pilot gve me his spare headset and got to listen to ATC the whole flight. Such an awesome experience it is a shame this probably will never happen again with all the strict rules


                      • #12
                        Mine was on my vacation to Maui 2 years ago. After a long day of flying I was ready for the HNL-OGG leg on a Hawaiian DC-9-50. It was great watching all the scenery of the Hawaiian Islands pass by and seeing the sunset at the same time. Very smooth flight, too. A few cumulus clouds on the way, but they just served to enhance the eye candy


                        • #13
                          My most memorable flight was my first time flying on a commercial airliner. It was 3 years ago when I was 13 years old and I remember it clearly. It was from PDX-DEN-BWI on United Airlines on a Boeing 757-200. We took off from Portland at about 6:10AM and I remember that special feeling right when you lift off the ground. There is nothing better than your first take-off. It was a rainy day in March and when we got above the clouds it was an unbelievable moment to see the sunrise and the snow covered Mt. Hood. The 2 hour flight went by really fast to Denver after watching NBA on NBC on the plane and looking out the window. At about 9:00 AM, we took off for Baltimore and landed there.

                          On the way home, we flew from MCI-DEN-PDX all on United. A 737 to DEN and 727 to PDX from DEN. The 727 was so cool. It was the first and last time I got to fly on onew and I will never forget it. From DEN to PDX, we were the last flight to depart out of Denver after being de-iced and a strong snow storm shut down the airport. When we arrived in Portland, it was partly cloudy and 64 degrees and I looked at the arrival board and all flights from Denver- Cancelled and we made it.

                          Since then, I have been hooked on flying and want to fly for United (if they are still around) and make that my career.


                          • #14
                            First one that comes to mind, Belgrade-Zagreb 1983 on JAT YU-AHM DC-9-32 with only 9 pax on board. We didn't even use reverse thrust on rollout.


                            • #15

                              My best trip was in july 2000 when I spend my summer in Texas.

                              First I take Co flight from Quito to Panama ( B 737). I was traveling alone, so I felt like the perfect tourist.
                              After that I take an enjoyable flight to Houston (IAH), with excellent music, delicious food and an excellent view from my window ubicated in the seat A17 (I remember because it was a window in the left side).

                              Then when I were in Houston, the airport amaze me, what a nice place, the best airport I ve ever seen in my whole life (even better than JFK or Miami Intl). Then at 3:00 PM i take the MD 83 to Austin wich it s the capital of Texas. Definetly my best trip from the beggining until the end.

                              And in midddle of summmer I flew AUSTIN - ST LOUIS - NEW YORK. This one I made it in TWA.

                              I loved that trip
                              ACES. Por el Respeto.