Wednesday, May 28, 2008

The West Is Best

In a previous post I talked about the great sightseeing opportunities when flying in the southwestern United States. A recent trip of mine was no exception.

I learned to fly in the small border town of Douglas, Arizona. One of my first cross country flights was up to Tucson and back. I can remember having to wait for takeoff so a bunch of A-7 Corsairs from the Arizona Air Guard could land.
A recent trip took us to TUS. Once again we had to wait for the Air Guard guys. But now they have upgraded to F-16's.

The ground crews at Southwest Airlines are showing their Arizona spirit with their tractor painted up like the state flag.

Not long after launching back to DFW, we spotted this fire in the hills just east of Tucson. The amazing thing about the photo is the cloud that has formed above the fire. The heat was apparently so intense that it formed it's own little weather system.

The next day would take us out to Palm Springs. A visual approach (as always) was made to runway 31. Just off the left out of the photo is a ridge of large mountains. You have to hug the ridge in order to set up for final approach to the runway.

Mt San Jacinto lies behind the tail. A missed approach off of runway 31 requires a right turnout. A left turn would be trouble!

Our routing back to DFW took us well north of course over southern Utah for some weather avoidance. Here's a shot of a canyon the Colorado River has carved out in Utah.

And finally another great southwestern sunset was in store. We took off from DFW and chased this sunset for almost one hour as we cruised westward towards Phoenix.

The West is Best!

For a look at some more of my photos, please aviate over to Plane & Simple.


Jim said...

Thanks for the trip with gas prices the way they are I couldn't have gotten a better deal.The pictures are awesome.

Len (Barfbag) said...

Maybe I should charge a small fee for each view!!!

Tom said...

Beautiful pics len, my favourite is the tail section in PSP with the mountain in the background. I had no idea airlines were still even flying mainline aircraft into PSP anymore, it is good to know some still are!

Len (Barfbag) said...

Hi Tom,

Thanks for the compliment!

Yeah, the loads into PSP have been historically good. Especially during their high season. I wouldn't think AA would be pulling out of there anytime soon.


Hana said...

So, JB's Daddy Len, you're enjoying the scenery and taking pictures, all while you're piloting the plane?