UAopsMGR From Croatia, joined Mar 2005, 144 posts, RR: 0 Posted (7 years 10 months 5 days 6 hours ago) and read 6126 times:
WARNING- 1st TR...proceed with caution!
Sorry for the lack of cabin photos
So, I've always enjoyed reading these trip reports and have finally decided to make a contribution. I headed to Orlando for the day with hopes to view the launch of Space Shuttle Atlantis on a long awaited assembly mission to the International Space Station. Unfortunately, while I was flying from DCA to MCO, NASA was scrubbing the launch attempt for a couple faulty ECO sensors, which essentially turned the trip into an "escape from the cold", frequent flyer mile building, BBQ recon mission for the day. The trip was reminiscent of may short non-rev trips I took during my time with United.
US Airways 873
Thursday, Dec 06, 2007
Aircraft- Airbus A319 (twin-jet) (A319/L)
Origin- Buffalo Niagara Intl (KBUF)
Destination- Ronald Reagan Washington National (KDCA)
Seat- 18A Class- Y
Departure- 06:00AM EST 06:12AM EST
Arrival- 06:51AM EST 06:58AM EST
After getting through security, I proceeded to gate 2 where boarding began at 5:25AM ahead of schedule and coupled with the light load (maybe 40%) we left the blocks almost 10-minutes early.
Removing frozen precipitation
After a short delay for de-icing, we taxied via Alpha to runway 23 for departure. With the southwesterly winds and light load the takeoff roll was short and we were airborne before the runway 32/14 intersection.
Shortbread cookies and beverages were served (I had cran-apple juice).
Harrisburg, PA (I think)
Heading south on descent, we flew past Andrews AFB, RFK stadium and then turned north along the Potomac to align with runway 1 for arrival at DCA.
Waiting for a gate at DCA
With our early arrival, all gates were occupied and we waited for about 10-minutes before proceeding.
With the full load on this flight, I opted for a "go-uprade" to F for an extra $100. Worth the money to escape a center seat and screaming children!
US Airways 1159
Thursday, Dec 06, 2007
Aircraft- Boeing 737-400 (twin-jet) (B734/J)
Origin- Ronald Reagan Washington National (KDCA)
Destination- Orlando Intl (KMCO)
Seat- 3A Class- F
Departure- 08:35AM EST 09:02AM EST
Arrival- 10:30AM EST 11:08AM EST
After a pre-departure beverage of OJ, we left the gate on schedule and headed to runway 1 for departure.
After a short wait in the penalty box we were underway...
A basket of snacks were passed around by the flight crew. I had Sun Chips and a granola bar with hot tea.
Bad shot of Myrtle Beach, SC (I was shooting into the sun)
Daytona Beach, FL
Florida Space Coast- Shuttle Landing Facility at center
Thanks for the ride!
When I booted up my laptop at MCO to check on the status of the launch, my jaw dropped when my CNN homepage came up and the headline was "Atlantis Launch Scrubbed". Still, I decided to pick up the rental car and make a day of it proceeding out to Titusville where I stopped at Sonny's for some BBQ, then headed over to the Clarion (formerly the Holiday Inn) my favorite launch viewing spot for a couple photos of KSC.
From Left- Pad 39B, Pad 39A, VAB
Shuttle Atlantis is on Pad 39A
Got this photo before being booted by KSC Security.
Hope you enjoyed my first crack at it!
Kids, you tried your best and you failed miserably. The lesson is, never try.- Homer Simpson
AirTranTUS From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 5, posted (7 years 10 months 4 days 19 hours ago) and read 5568 times:
Nice report, thanks for sharing. I really like the shots of Harrisburg and Baltimore in the pre-dawn light. My favorite time of day (only if associated with aviation, not worth waking up for anything else).
Quoting Fito28 (Reply 4): I though planes were not allowed to fly that close to the pentagon anymore.