Monday, November 20, 2006

Scary Flight

Hi Marty,

Your series of scary runways reminded me of the time Pat, myself and 3 of our kids flew from Las Vegas Nevada to Page Arizona. Page is on a plateau about 2 hours north of Flagstaff.

It was back in about 1973 and we arrive at the Vegas airport minutes before the flight was scheduled for take off. We were at the desk when a fellow walked up with a dolly cart and said follow me please. We load our luggage on the cart and Pat, myself and the three kids follow what we think is a porter out onto the runway. He walked up to a twin engine Piper and loads the luggage in the wing compartments.

We get on the plane, an 8 passenger jobby, and there is one other passenger, a Grand Canyon guide. The same guy that loaded the luggege gets on and sits in the pilots seat. His PA system is simply to turn and shout. First thing he says is " Keep the kids away from the door, it sometimes pops open while in flight." Great.

He then invites me into the co-pilots seat. The flight was relatively uneventful except for the fact that we could not get enough altitude to clear all the mountains so we had to fly between them. It was quite a thrill, at times we saw herds of Elk running from the roar of the aircraft, we were so close to the trees.

On approach to Page airstrip he turns to me and says "Are you nervous?"... "Uh, no why?" I say....... he says " Well the runway is two short for a conventional landing so we will be coming in below the runway into the face of the mountain and I will hop the plane up onto the runway." " If not, we could go right off the other end of the strip, its too short for a twin engine craft."

Fine time to tell us.

Bob H

Thanks Bob H.

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