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Toughest Approach In The World  
User currently offlinePanAm747 From United States of America, joined Feb 2004, 4242 posts, RR: 8
Posted (13 years 3 months 3 weeks 2 days 20 hours ago) and read 6723 times:

What do you pilots think is the toughest approach in the world? I heard it was DCA River visual approach and the one in Honduras, but does anyone have their pick for the world's toughest approach?

Also are there any "war stories" from commercial and especially the former military pilots.

I.E. "I was coming back to my carrier after another bombing run and all of a sudden I lost all of my hydraulics, and then I saw about a dozen MIGs..."


Pan Am:The World's Most Experienced Airline - P(oor) S(ailor's) A(irline): San Diego's Hometown Airline-Catch Our Smile!
33 replies: All unread, showing first 25:
 
User currently offlineIainhol From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 1, posted (13 years 3 months 3 weeks 2 days 20 hours ago) and read 6477 times:

I think most airports are not too tough, it becomes tough when you start having problems, like being on fire, engines out, bad weather, ect.
Iain


User currently offlineTwotterwrench From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 2, posted (13 years 3 months 3 weeks 2 days 17 hours ago) and read 6425 times:

Juneau alaska is tough

User currently offlineRendezvous From New Zealand, joined May 2001, 516 posts, RR: 0
Reply 3, posted (13 years 3 months 3 weeks 2 days 11 hours ago) and read 6386 times:

Obviously Kai Tak in Hong Kong was tough, check out some of the pictures! But, of course, this is no longer.

User currently offlineL-188 From United States of America, joined Jul 1999, 29799 posts, RR: 58
Reply 4, posted (13 years 3 months 3 weeks 2 days 11 hours ago) and read 6483 times:

TO SEE THE TOUGHEST APPROACH CLICK HERE!!!


A few notes about the Dutch Harbor Airport.....There is a matching hill behind the aircraft just like the one you can see beyond the runway. From this direction the pattern is a left hand one around the mountain on the left hand side of the runway. This photo was taken by a pilot friend of mine just after he made the 90' turn to final. Decision height...If memory serves is 2200 ft on the approach...Sorry don't have a book here to look up the specifics. Markair used to fly 737-200 into there and Alaska Airlines still does.



OBAMA-WORST PRESIDENT EVER....Even SKOORB would be better.
User currently offlineL-188 From United States of America, joined Jul 1999, 29799 posts, RR: 58
Reply 5, posted (13 years 3 months 3 weeks 2 days 10 hours ago) and read 6389 times:

If that link doesn't seem to work for you type in....http://www.geocities.com/l_188/DUT.jpg


Sorry for the inconvienice




OBAMA-WORST PRESIDENT EVER....Even SKOORB would be better.
User currently offlineBlackened From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 6, posted (13 years 3 months 3 weeks 2 days 4 hours ago) and read 6284 times:

That picture is amazing. You need to upload it here. If you're not the photographer make the photographer upload it.  Smile/happy/getting dizzy

User currently offlinePhilB From Ireland, joined May 1999, 2915 posts, RR: 13
Reply 7, posted (13 years 3 months 3 weeks 2 days ago) and read 6258 times:

Dutch Harbour apart, how about Kathmandu, Aspen, Pago Pago, Guam, Gibraltar and, on a day with bad weather, the approach over Georgetown into DCA?

User currently offlineUSAFHummer From United States of America, joined May 2000, 10685 posts, RR: 52
Reply 8, posted (13 years 3 months 3 weeks 1 day 22 hours ago) and read 6222 times:

How about Courcheval...remember the thread and pics on that a few months ago?

Greg



Chief A.net college football stadium self-pic guru
User currently offlinePW4084 From United States of America, joined Mar 2001, 291 posts, RR: 0
Reply 9, posted (13 years 3 months 3 weeks 1 day 22 hours ago) and read 6206 times:

PADU [looking the other direction from L-188's beautiful shot]


Click for large version
Click here for full size photo!

Photo © Dan Gasper






User currently offlineLZ-TLT From Germany, joined Apr 2001, 431 posts, RR: 0
Reply 10, posted (13 years 3 months 3 weeks 1 day 22 hours ago) and read 6194 times:

What about Lugano or Sarajevo?

User currently offlineChris28_17 From United States of America, joined Jul 2000, 1439 posts, RR: 10
Reply 11, posted (13 years 3 months 3 weeks 1 day 22 hours ago) and read 6191 times:

i just went to DCA this weekend, we landed rwy 19, it was fun, listening to ATC on approach was fun..'

on the ground, it makes a pretty cool picture with planes turning very short finals right in front of (well, its far away but visually in front of) the wash. monument...

CHRIS


User currently offlineGocaps16 From Japan, joined Jan 2000, 4346 posts, RR: 20
Reply 12, posted (13 years 3 months 3 weeks 1 day 21 hours ago) and read 6176 times:

Dammit Chris, why'd you go to DCA without telling me.  Smile errrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrr.

Kevin/DCA


User currently offlineFrequentflyer5 From United States of America, joined May 2001, 236 posts, RR: 0
Reply 13, posted (13 years 3 months 3 weeks 1 day 3 hours ago) and read 6118 times:

I would say Kai Tak is the most challenging from experience. I am sure there are tons more...

User currently offlineAmbasaid From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 14, posted (13 years 3 months 3 weeks 1 day 3 hours ago) and read 6110 times:

If you are going to talk about challenging airports you really have to consider the approach aids. I wouldnt consider any airport with an ILS to be tough, but one with a step down VOR approach followed by a circle to land within a valley is pretty interesting. (Kathmandu)

Either that or any place where you have to do a single pilot NDB approach!

KaiTak is still loaded in our sim, its fun, but you would be surprised at the number of sim joyriders who can hack it first time, 2 ILS's with lead in strobe lights.

I dont see what the problem is with DCA, even if you mess it up, there is nothing around you to fly into.


User currently offlineGocaps16 From Japan, joined Jan 2000, 4346 posts, RR: 20
Reply 15, posted (13 years 3 months 3 weeks 1 day ago) and read 6090 times:

The problem with the River visual 19 approach at DCA is that you have to manuever the plane without entering P56. Many obsticles like the Washington Monument and the bridges over the Potomac river is to watch out for.

Kevin/DCA


User currently offlineA/c train From United Kingdom, joined Jun 2001, 501 posts, RR: 4
Reply 16, posted (13 years 3 months 3 weeks 19 hours ago) and read 6081 times:

I flew jumpseat in an B757 into Gibraltar at night and thought that was interesting , Monarch Airlines only let there Fleet Captains fly there, of course the pilots make it look easy!
regards
a/c


User currently offlineL-188 From United States of America, joined Jul 1999, 29799 posts, RR: 58
Reply 17, posted (13 years 3 months 3 weeks 14 hours ago) and read 6040 times:

Thanks for the other view Dan....

Now we just need to get a photo of a 737 on that runway.



OBAMA-WORST PRESIDENT EVER....Even SKOORB would be better.
User currently offlinePW4084 From United States of America, joined Mar 2001, 291 posts, RR: 0
Reply 18, posted (13 years 3 months 3 weeks 12 hours ago) and read 6020 times:

L-188
that's my only shot on this site, had to fit it in somehow!

I've got a few shots of 737s on the ramp, but no spectacular landing shots or anything...

One thing I never did get the chance to see is a Lockheed at Dutch... or a YS-11 for that matter

Dan
(ps now I am joining the usaf so I might not be around for a while, can't wait to get back to AK though)



User currently offlineAria From Iran, joined Oct 2007, 0 posts, RR: 0
Reply 19, posted (13 years 3 months 3 weeks 8 hours ago) and read 6004 times:

Sorry Ambasaid

In the airline I work for, you don't have to do a single pilot anything....maybe, a single NDB approach...with lots of help from the support pilot...but, you are right, throw some of those 'newbees' into the sim for a go at the old KaiTak, and it was pretty impressive...until you throw in the old KaiTak winds...with variable crosswinds all through final, plus the inevitable tailwind to low altitude, that MAY decide to turn into a headwind...forget what the tower is reporting, it bears little relationship to reality...thank goodness we fly reference ground speed or, some days, the thing would fall out of the sky
Remember- A Monkey CAN fly an aeroplane.....but, only with considerable and consistent support from someone doing the thinking..

Regards,
Aria


User currently offlineAria From Iran, joined Oct 2007, 0 posts, RR: 0
Reply 20, posted (13 years 3 months 3 weeks 7 hours ago) and read 5992 times:

P.S.

I think Iainhol has summed it up best....the toughest approach we ever do, is when something has gone wrong, badly wrong, with the aeroplane itself....no matter how good the weather, if the aeroplane is broken, & you are low on fuel (something the CEOs & shareholders love, but we hate) everywhere becomes a more difficult airport......by-the-way, where is DCA??
(In old-australian, is was Department of Civil Aviation!)

Aria


User currently offlineWindshear From Denmark, joined Mar 2000, 2330 posts, RR: 11
Reply 21, posted (13 years 3 months 3 weeks 6 hours ago) and read 6002 times:

Sønderstrømfjord in Greenland is one of the most demanding approaches in the world, the app. procedure is done between mountains and glaciers, sharp and frequent turns are required for tjhe approach.
At final the pilots see a mountain behind the runway, so braking is crutual, although the mountain isn't located just behind the runway, it sure raises the crews puls a tad:O)

The airport is a former USAF base, it still is, but mainlty it's tourists.
SAS flies to the city two times a week or so, with 767's, so if that's not a challenge then I do not know what it is...



"If you believe breaking is possible, believe in fixing also"-Rebbe Nachman
User currently offlinePanAm747 From United States of America, joined Feb 2004, 4242 posts, RR: 8
Reply 22, posted (13 years 3 months 3 weeks ago) and read 5960 times:

Aria, lainhol, Ambasaid-I'm sure those would be the toughest if you factor in those events.

But I remember Delta737, in a Comair thread saying that River Visual approach at DCA (Washington D.C. Ronald Reagan National) was the toughest, at least among US pilots. But I'm surprised with the other tough ones.

Besides these, wouldn't London and NYC be tough with the traffic?



Pan Am:The World's Most Experienced Airline - P(oor) S(ailor's) A(irline): San Diego's Hometown Airline-Catch Our Smile!
User currently offlineGocaps16 From Japan, joined Jan 2000, 4346 posts, RR: 20
Reply 23, posted (13 years 3 months 2 weeks 6 days 23 hours ago) and read 5940 times:

traffic won't be tough on the pilots but tough on the ATC. ATCer hates NYC with al lthe traffics.

Time to go land a Cessna 172 on the river visual 19 approach at DCA around 10pm.  Smile

Kevin/DCA


User currently offlineLeeJ From United Kingdom, joined Apr 2001, 293 posts, RR: 0
Reply 24, posted (13 years 3 months 2 weeks 6 days 5 hours ago) and read 5910 times:

I can't believe anyone hasn't mentioned Funchal (Madeira, Portugal). Curved approach lights, short sloped runway, mountains one side, sea the other - the strip was actually created by blowing up the side of a hill! I have flown in here twice - amazing - although you can't experience the short runway now as it has been extended out to see by way of a pontoon on 200ft pylons buried into the sea bed!

25 EGGD : No one has mentioned a small airstrip somewhere in the alps which is definetly the toughest. I have next to no info on it except that it is located on
26 Zauberfloete : LFLJ, Courchevel in the french alps is a cool looking airport. You have to see that shots: http://members.aon.at/~slenz/dash7.html#Courchevel I think
27 Aerozbm : Among the most difficult approaches: the french island of St-Barthelemy in the Caribeans; Chicago-Midway; St-Moritz in Switzerland;
28 EGGD : Zauberfloete - That is exactly the airport i was referring to! So maybe i exagerated the length a little but the rest was true. Had no idea that Dash
29 SCXmechanic : What about the Canarsie 13L Appr. at JFK???
30 Uvalencia : Although I am not a pilot I have to say that several pilots have told me that Mexico City´s Mateo Five arrival to runway 05 R is quite a demanding ap
31 Post contains images Max Power : Bottom line is you have to pay attention to ALL of them. Some do demand more "awareness". The toughest Approach is the one you don't walk away from or
32 Western727 : I understand San Diego is sort of tough. Also, Hong Kong (Checkerboard) was tough before they closed it.
33 Post contains images Alle : The toughest approach airport i've flow'n to is Funchal, Portugal (FNC/LPFU), i was really scared when the Finnair MD80 i was flying in was going to l
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