Airplanetire From United States of America, joined May 2001, 1809 posts, RR: 2 Posted (11 years 11 months 1 week 3 days 17 hours ago) and read 13471 times:
Today I returned home from Nurnberg, Germany after an amazing two weeks there. I flew on Lufthansa, leaving this morning on an A321 flying from NUE to F R A and then on an LH A340-300 from F R A to ATL. The flight path today for that second flight was bizarre. Below is the great circle route:
We deviated a lot from this. The plane took off and circled around, flying to the north and going over the German coast to the North Sea. We flew over the North Sea, never reaching Great Britain, but instead passing just north of the Shetland Islands. A little while later, we flew over the Faeroe Islands and continued northwards towards Iceland. We made landfall over Iceland on its west coast and flew across the country leaving back over water on the opposite coast. Later, we crossed southern Greenland and finally made landfall over Canada. The plane turned southward, crossing the southeastern tip of Hudson Bay and turned completely south, flying over Michigan, Dayton, Cincinnati, Kentucky, Tennessee, and then finally into ATL. At times we were moving extremely fast (greater than 630 mph). The flight took a total of 9 hours, 8 minutes. First of all, why did we fly so far off the great circle? I understand that rarely do flights follow a great circle exactly, but this was extremely off. Also, was this a rare circumstance that we had tail winds headed west, given our high speed? Any other input would be appreciated. Thank you very much!
HB-IWC From Indonesia, joined Sep 2000, 4653 posts, RR: 69
Reply 1, posted (11 years 11 months 1 week 3 days 17 hours ago) and read 13391 times:
Seems like an exceptional flight path to benefit from the weather conditions. That however didn't prevent the flight from arriving just a bit late in ATL at 2.08 pm, scheduled 2.00 pm. The return flight is due early into Frankfurt though, almost half an hour ahead of schedule, so the favorable winds Westbound didn't have any impact on the winds Eastbound.
Caribb From Canada, joined Nov 1999, 1649 posts, RR: 7
Reply 3, posted (11 years 11 months 1 week 3 days 17 hours ago) and read 13340 times:
I had a silimar flight path once on a KLM flight AMS-YUL. Over the Shetlands, directly over Iceland (which was spectacular), then Southern Greenland and into Labrador & Quebec... then almost straight south into Montreal.. also a 9 hour+ flight including a good 40 minute circling of Montreal and a final decision to land at YMX because of a bad snowstorm at YUL.. I recall we were late leaving and pilot losing his position on the traditional flight paths so this was a last minute replacement but we were warned beforehand this may happen.
Skibum9 From United States of America, joined Nov 2001, 1229 posts, RR: 0
Reply 5, posted (11 years 11 months 1 week 3 days 16 hours ago) and read 13236 times:
I was looking at AirNav this morning, the same day as this posting, and I noticed that the Atlantic track, westbound, was to the extreme north. Your LH flight into ATL was not at all unusual today, in fact I saw many Delta flights crossing over Greenland, down through Canada by the Hudson bay, and down through Ohio into ATL. This was way off the more southerly Atlantic tracks that go over Gander and down the east cost to ATL.
I do know that the North Atlantic are established daily and it is based on prevailing winds and weather. I just checked some of the flights crossing the pond tonight, they are on the southerly tracks, and they have some pretty high groundspeeds going (KLM662 is showing a speed of 635kts.), indicating they have some strong tailwinds. So I would say the chances are pretty high that the reason you were sent up north was because of the headwinds, in your case, and tomorrow's flights will probably be on northerly tracks as well.
Big777jet From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 6, posted (11 years 11 months 1 week 3 days 15 hours ago) and read 13150 times:
One of the database photo that someone who jumpseat on an Air France A340 from CDG to ORD. The caption said, it flew over Cleveland OH!!! It doesn't fly from Traverse City, MI it is popular routes from Europe to Chicago always flying over Traverse City. That's why AF A340 changed direction to Cleveland it is possible of weather conditions.
DgeHfx From Canada, joined May 2001, 132 posts, RR: 0
Reply 8, posted (11 years 11 months 1 week 3 days 5 hours ago) and read 12808 times:
I recall one time taking off from LHR on an AC flight for Canada and then circling Wales several times before beginning the Atlantic crossing. My understanding was that we had a take-off slot time that we didn't want to lose but the transatlantic route was so crowded that we had then to wait our turn to join it.
9V-SPJ From United States of America, joined Dec 2000, 758 posts, RR: 0
Reply 9, posted (11 years 11 months 1 week 3 days 1 hour ago) and read 12250 times:
I just flew LAX- TPE - SIN and vv and we took completely different routes both times. SQ 29 went extremely north, over the aleutian islands, down kamchatka, touching speeds of 850-900 km/h while SQ 30 went extremely south of the aleutian islands, hitting landfall just west of SFO with speeds of 1000-1050 km/h. SQ 29 was 13:40 and SQ 30 was 11:45. I guess those winds really make a difference!
UN_B732 From United States of America, joined Jul 2001, 4297 posts, RR: 4
Reply 10, posted (11 years 11 months 1 week 3 days 1 hour ago) and read 12114 times:
KBP-JFK not too long ago on AeroSvit took us over West Ukraine; Poland; The North Sea; North of Shetland again; Touched South Greenland; headed towards somewhere near Chicoutimi, Canada and then we went dead south.
Must be the wind this time of year.
Deltabobo From United States of America, joined Jul 2003, 209 posts, RR: 1
Reply 12, posted (11 years 11 months 1 week 3 days ago) and read 11612 times:
One flight that I was on did that. It was a DL 767-300 from MUC to ATL. (It was flight 131). We flew over Hudson Bay to avoid storms in the northeast corridor. We landed only 30 minutes later than scheduled, considering all the mileage that we added on.
Dispatchers...saving pilots from themselves and their egos since 1938!
N102daman From United States of America, joined Nov 2003, 155 posts, RR: 3
Reply 14, posted (11 years 11 months 1 week 2 days 21 hours ago) and read 10644 times:
Sometimes the shortest distance doesn't mean the fastest flight. My best guess for you would be the winds. I have been on many LGW - ATL flights (Delta of course) and have flown the northern track over Greenland many times. The inflight flight tracker is wonderful in Business Elite. I remember one of the bumpiest flights I have ever been on was a DL 767-300 ride ATL - LGW that went straight across the Atlantic and arrived almost an hour early. Of course the Midwest and east coast was having some pretty gnarly weather that winter.
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Iberia340600 From Spain, joined Oct 2003, 804 posts, RR: 13
Reply 15, posted (11 years 11 months 1 week 2 days 18 hours ago) and read 9772 times:
It could very well be that one of the radio antennas were out. I am not sure which one it is but it is the one that works with long waves...which allows planes to go over the Atlantic or any body of water for that matter and still have radio contact. If that radio antenna is out...they have to use the short wave radio which uses line of sight....hence the track you took to be near land. LH may have done this to avoid cancelling the flight.
I can attest that this happened once to IB's flight leaving New York to Madrid a few years back...instead of cancelling the flight, just added extra fuel and told passengers that the flight time would be about 2 hours more due to the technical problem with the radio.
KDTWFlyer From United States of America, joined Jun 2004, 844 posts, RR: 0
Reply 17, posted (11 years 11 months 1 week 2 days 15 hours ago) and read 9537 times:
That odd routing to the north happened to me once on NW57, a DC-10 from AMS to MEM. We took a highly skewed great circle route over central Greenland then down over the southern peninsula of Michigan. That was my longest flight ever at 4,500 miles.
A3xx900 From Germany, joined Jan 2004, 402 posts, RR: 0
Reply 18, posted (11 years 11 months 1 week 2 days 12 hours ago) and read 9465 times:
go to http://www.natroutes.glideslope.de/ and download the Natplot program. It's free of course. Then you can download the NAT text file (at the same address as above or maybe here: https://www.notams.jcs.mil/common/nat.html which seems more up to date) and open it with natplot.
Airbazar From United States of America, joined Sep 2003, 9890 posts, RR: 10
Reply 21, posted (11 years 11 months 1 week 2 days 3 hours ago) and read 9213 times:
That route to the north happened to me on a UA flight from MUC to IAD. We went right over Toronto and down across New York state. I've also been on a southern route from AB) (FRA / FRF / EDDF), Germany">FRA to BOS where we departed south towards the coast of Northern Spain and directly across the Atlantic making landfall on Cape Cod.
Both of these routes were so we could avoid the strong jetstream.