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Old July 20th, 2010, 11:56 PM   #1
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Cool Most Extreme Airports on the History Channel

Most Extreme Airports just premiered on the History Channel and History HD.

It will be repeated throughout July:
http://www.history.com/schedule?search-term=airports

It had me on the edge of the TV chair, even though it starts off with Lindbergh in San Diego and the PSA crash where "the Cessna cut right across the path of the jet..." *sigh* We kinna win.

"Now there's a TCA so it can't happen again." Uh, huh.
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Old July 21st, 2010, 12:06 AM   #2
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Re: Most Extreme Airports on the History Channel

I watched it. Pretty good show, and just as you said, it had me on the edge of my seat.
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Old July 21st, 2010, 01:06 AM   #3
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Re: Most Extreme Airports on the History Channel

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Originally Posted by mikea View Post
"Now there's a TCA so it can't happen again." Uh, huh.
A TCA (the old name for Class B airspace, all you young whippersnappers) can't save a crew from hitting the traffic they've called "in sight" after they lose sight of it, tell the controller they still have it, and then laugh about what they said. I switched over to Warehouse 13.
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Old July 21st, 2010, 08:47 AM   #4
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Re: Most Extreme Airports on the History Channel

I am glad I DVR'd it, so I could fast forward not only through the commercials, but each time the repeated the countdown list after each commercial.

Pretty neat though. Would be cool to get some of those back-country GA airports in there though too.
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Old July 21st, 2010, 09:29 AM   #5
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Re: Most Extreme Airports on the History Channel

I enjoyed it. I made the list so that I can fly to all those airports in flight sim. Here's the list of airports and why they were on the list:

10. KSAN - San Diego, CA - Congested airspace, busy single-runway airport - however, no mention of the 3 busy GA airports or 2 Naval Air Stations nearby - just talked about airline traffic to/from KSAN
9. LPMA - Madeira, Portugal - Location on island, wind conditions, runway built out into ocean on stilts.
8. KEGE - Vail, CO - Altitude and approach/departure through terrain
7. LFLJ - Courchevel, France - Altitude, approach through valleys, short runway with an 18.5% grade
6. VHHH - Hong Kong Kai Tak - Approach between tall buildings, make sharp turn to final at 300ft AGL
5. LXGB - Gibraltar - Spain won't allow departures/arrivals through their airspace, so makes the approach/departure pretty interesting, highway goes across runway
4. TNCM - St. Maarten, Netherlands Antilles - Short-ish runway, high terrain on departure end, proximity to beach on approach end, crazy people "riding the fence" when heavies power up to take off (I want to try that!)
3. TFFJ - St. Barth's - Short, downhill runway, slam-dunk approach over a hill with automotive traffic at the top
2. MHTG - Tegucigalpa, Honduras - High altitude, short runway, approach through surrounding terrain
1. VNLK - Lukla, Nepal - High Altitude, 1700ft. runway with 12% grade

Just for the sake of conversation - what's the most extreme airport you've flown into and what made it extreme, in your opinion?
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Last edited by t0r0nad0; July 21st, 2010 at 09:46 AM.
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Old July 21st, 2010, 09:42 AM   #6
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Re: Most Extreme Airports on the History Channel

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Just for the sake of conversation - what's the most extreme airport you've flown into and what made it extreme, in your opinion?
Butter Valley, PA -- Small paved area inset (24x1535) into a grass runway, on a golf course. Has a unique slope to it, golf cart crossing, and small hills surrounding on Base leg at the one end. Fun place though. Good for Short Field landings and take offs, and since I had a CFI on board, the required Engine Out. Most challenging that I have been into in the past 3 years of flying. I managed to only use the pavement too,.. no rolloff into the grass.
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Old July 21st, 2010, 10:00 AM   #7
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Re: Most Extreme Airports on the History Channel

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Originally Posted by t0r0nad0 View Post
I enjoyed it. I made the list so that I can fly to all those airports in flight sim. Here's the list of airports and why they were on the list:

10. KSAN - San Diego, CA - Congested airspace, busy single-runway airport - however, no mention of the 3 busy GA airports or 2 Naval Air Stations nearby - just talked about airline traffic to/from KSAN
9. LPMA - Madeira, Portugal - Location on island, wind conditions, runway built out into ocean on stilts.
8. KEGE - Vail, CO - Altitude and approach/departure through terrain
7. LFLJ - Courchevel, France - Altitude, approach through valleys, short runway with an 18.5% grade
6. VHHH - Hong Kong Kai Tak - Approach between tall buildings, make sharp turn to final at 300ft AGL
5. LXGB - Gibraltar - Spain won't allow departures/arrivals through their airspace, so makes the approach/departure pretty interesting, highway goes across runway
4. TNCM - St. Maarten, Netherlands Antilles - Short-ish runway, high terrain on departure end, proximity to beach on approach end, crazy people "riding the fence" when heavies power up to take off (I want to try that!)
3. TFFJ - St. Barth's - Short, downhill runway, slam-dunk approach over a hill with automotive traffic at the top
2. MHTG - Tegucigalpa, Honduras - High altitude, short runway, approach through surrounding terrain
1. VNLK - Lukla, Nepal - High Altitude, 1700ft. runway with 12% grade

Just for the sake of conversation - what's the most extreme airport you've flown into and what made it extreme, in your opinion?
I was thinking the same thing!! I want to fly in to some of them airports in FSX, too!

Do you fly on VATSIM, by chance?
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Old July 21st, 2010, 10:00 AM   #8
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Re: Most Extreme Airports on the History Channel

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Just for the sake of conversation - what's the most extreme airport you've flown into and what made it extreme, in your opinion?
Mathis near Atlanta Georgia. It's a private runway 1500x30 with hangar buildings built up close to the runway on both sides. It's on a small plateau with drop offs at both ends and the locals call it "Carrier Mathis". I learned to fly at W00 (2400x30) so it normally wouldn't be that extreme to use Mathis but I landed there in my Pitts S2C that comes over the numbers at 95 mph. A friend of mine had invited me to stay overnight with him there at Mathis but neglected to tell me that it was short. I usually made the mid-field turn off at FME which is 1500' so I figured it was worth an attempt. The great thing about a Pitts is that the throttle will get you up and out of any kind of landing spot.

The first attempt didn't get it down until I'd used a few hundred feet of it so I went around. The second attempt I flew a steep final at 90 and rolled it on the numbers with no float and stopped with about 200' left. That's when I noticed the crowd of spectators with video cameras who later told me that no one had ever landed anything like a Pitts there before. I looked around and it was mostly RANS and ultralights sitting around.
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Old July 21st, 2010, 10:05 AM   #9
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Re: Most Extreme Airports on the History Channel

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Originally Posted by t0r0nad0 View Post
Just for the sake of conversation - what's the most extreme airport you've flown into and what made it extreme, in your opinion?
USS Lexington (CVT-16). Short, narrow, and moving.

Seriously...

One would be the old (now-closed) Hazard KY airport. Short, narrow, and one-way due to terrain, and also due to terrain, invisible to aircraft on base (and conversely, with base traffic invisible to aircraft departing the other way). The old (now-closed) Pikeville KY airport was a close second -- down in a twisting river valley, and also short and narrow.

Another would be the old (now-closed) McEnnan Airport in Ypsilanti MI. The long runway was 2300 feet of turf (measured from the base of the telephone poles at one end to the base of the 50-75 foot trees at the other). The short one was 1700 feet of turf (measured from the base of the big transmission line towers at one end to the base of the 50-75 foot trees at the other).
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Old July 21st, 2010, 10:28 AM   #10
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Re: Most Extreme Airports on the History Channel

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Originally Posted by Snaggletooth View Post
I was thinking the same thing!! I want to fly in to some of them airports in FSX, too!

Do you fly on VATSIM, by chance?
I do, on occasion. Perhaps we'll have to set up some multiplayer sessions to hit some of these airports (with or without VATSIM). Nick, are you in for this too?

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USS Lexington (CVT-16). Short, narrow, and moving.
You served on the Lex? You'll have to let me know if you're ever in the SE Texas area - I'd love to go to Corpus Christi and walk around that ship with you. I love visiting the vessels that are now floating museums, but every time I'm aboard one, I just keep thinking about how cool it would be to walk around it with someone who actually served on that ship.
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Old July 21st, 2010, 11:08 AM   #11
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Re: Most Extreme Airports on the History Channel

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You served on the Lex?
Only for a few days. Our squadron went down to P-cola for carquals while our carrier (Kitty Hawk) was in an extended yard period.

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You'll have to let me know if you're ever in the SE Texas area - I'd love to go to Corpus Christi and walk around that ship with you.
I'd probably get lost immediately. I know I did a couple of times while aboard those few days in 1976.
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Old July 21st, 2010, 11:34 AM   #12
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Re: Most Extreme Airports on the History Channel

Quote:
Originally Posted by t0r0nad0 View Post
I enjoyed it. I made the list so that I can fly to all those airports in flight sim. Here's the list of airports and why they were on the list:

10. KSAN - San Diego, CA - Congested airspace, busy single-runway airport - however, no mention of the 3 busy GA airports or 2 Naval Air Stations nearby - just talked about airline traffic to/from KSAN
9. LPMA - Madeira, Portugal - Location on island, wind conditions, runway built out into ocean on stilts.
8. KEGE - Vail, CO - Altitude and approach/departure through terrain
7. LFLJ - Courchevel, France - Altitude, approach through valleys, short runway with an 18.5% grade
6. VHHH - Hong Kong Kai Tak - Approach between tall buildings, make sharp turn to final at 300ft AGL
5. LXGB - Gibraltar - Spain won't allow departures/arrivals through their airspace, so makes the approach/departure pretty interesting, highway goes across runway
4. TNCM - St. Maarten, Netherlands Antilles - Short-ish runway, high terrain on departure end, proximity to beach on approach end, crazy people "riding the fence" when heavies power up to take off (I want to try that!)
3. TFFJ - St. Barth's - Short, downhill runway, slam-dunk approach over a hill with automotive traffic at the top
2. MHTG - Tegucigalpa, Honduras - High altitude, short runway, approach through surrounding terrain
1. VNLK - Lukla, Nepal - High Altitude, 1700ft. runway with 12% grade
Interesting that they include KEGE since I've been there a lot we're going there tomorrow. It doesn't even come to mind when I think of "extreme".

The thing that is eye-opening about KSAN is the parking garage on the LOC 27, that and the fact that it's a localizer with step-downs and not a ILS. I don't think that's too common for airports which have a lot of airline traffic. There is an ILS coming in from the west but I don't think they use that runway unless they really need to use it because of noise and climb gradient reasons.

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Just for the sake of conversation - what's the most extreme airport you've flown into and what made it extreme, in your opinion?
It would have to be that airport I went with Bob B. near Gastons. Good thing I wasn't the one that was flying!

Other than that I'm thinking this place...




WY11 near Encampment, WY. The interesting things are the slope which makes it obviously one way and the road which crosses it. I would try not to be going too fast until I got to this point of the runway where I could see the road. No I didn't land here in the Twin Cessna but I did in the Twin Beech...



Here I am waiting for passengers, just me and the airplane, alone in the early morning...
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Old July 21st, 2010, 11:41 AM   #13
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Re: Most Extreme Airports on the History Channel

Telluride in a driving snow squall. Talk about corkscrewing down final!
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Old July 21st, 2010, 11:42 AM   #14
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Re: Most Extreme Airports on the History Channel

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The thing that is eye-opening about KSAN is the parking garage on the LOC 27, that and the fact that it's a localizer with step-downs and not a ILS. I don't think that's too common for airports which have a lot of airline traffic. There is an ILS coming in from the west but I don't think they use that runway unless they really need to use it because of noise and climb gradient reasons.
They did devote a fair amount of air time talking about that parking garage and mentioned the step-down LOC approach. I would think that the bigger problem with using runway 9 would be the prevailing winds coming in from the ocean, more than climb gradient/noise abatement issues...
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Old July 21st, 2010, 11:45 AM   #15
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Re: Most Extreme Airports on the History Channel

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They did devote a fair amount of air time talking about that parking garage and mentioned the step-down LOC approach. I would think that the bigger problem with using runway 9 would be the prevailing winds coming in from the ocean, more than climb gradient/noise abatement issues...
I'm sure the wind is also part of it. I was there once when half the airplanes were missing the LOC 27 so they turned it around to use the ILS 9. I don't remember what the winds were that day.
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Old July 21st, 2010, 02:40 PM   #16
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Re: Most Extreme Airports on the History Channel

I saw part of the show - it started dragging. It was probably twice as long as it needed to be.

I've been into EGE a couple of times, I wouldn't consider that extreme ('course once was in a JetRanger). The old Vail airport, on the other hand....
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Old July 21st, 2010, 02:54 PM   #17
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Re: Most Extreme Airports on the History Channel

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The old Vail airport, on the other hand....

Link to the old Avon (Vail) airport mentioned:

http://members.tripod.com/airfields_...elds_CO_NW.htm

Interesting in that a glider landing was the straw that broke the camels back and led to the closure of the field.
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Old July 21st, 2010, 02:59 PM   #18
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Re: Most Extreme Airports on the History Channel

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Link to the old Avon (Vail) airport mentioned:

http://members.tripod.com/airfields_...elds_CO_NW.htm

Interesting in that a glider landing was the straw that broke the camels back and led to the closure of the field.
My memory of Avon Airport is being up on the slopes of what was to become the Beaver Creek ski area with some surveyors in ATVs and seeing an airplane make its approach below us. I guess I am dating myself...
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Old July 21st, 2010, 03:17 PM   #19
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Re: Most Extreme Airports on the History Channel

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I do, on occasion. Perhaps we'll have to set up some multiplayer sessions to hit some of these airports (with or without VATSIM). Nick, are you in for this too?
Count me in. Shoot me a PM and we'll go up sometime and do some multiplayer flights!
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Old July 21st, 2010, 03:24 PM   #20
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Re: Most Extreme Airports on the History Channel

Never landed at any of them, but sounds interesting.

Can't say I've landed at anyplace I considered to be extreme. If I really thought it was extreme, chances are I chose to land somewhere else. WV62's runway is pretty cool, being about the same width as my Aztec's wingspan with obstacles and a road crossing the middle.

I like Mari's submission, that one looks neat!
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Old July 21st, 2010, 03:33 PM   #21
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Re: Most Extreme Airports on the History Channel

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Telluride in a driving snow squall. Talk about corkscrewing down final!
Telluride is interesting too...
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Old July 21st, 2010, 03:50 PM   #22
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Re: Most Extreme Airports on the History Channel

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Telluride is interesting too...
Just looked it up. Now that looks cool!
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Old July 21st, 2010, 04:38 PM   #23
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Re: Most Extreme Airports on the History Channel

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Just for the sake of conversation - what's the most extreme airport you've flown into and what made it extreme, in your opinion?
This is probably my most extreme landing:
http://tinyurl.com/26vh4y

Be sure to download the video.
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Old July 21st, 2010, 04:54 PM   #24
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Re: Most Extreme Airports on the History Channel

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My memory of Avon Airport is being up on the slopes of what was to become the Beaver Creek ski area with some surveyors in ATVs and seeing an airplane make its approach below us. I guess I am dating myself...

If you have ever looked down on an aircraft... WHILE IT WAS FLYING... you might be from Colorado!
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Old July 21st, 2010, 05:30 PM   #25
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Re: Most Extreme Airports on the History Channel

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This is probably my most extreme landing:
http://tinyurl.com/26vh4y

Be sure to download the video.
Wow,.. that's wild. Good audio on the video, can you PM me with details of your setup?
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