The semester is over, and it was time to head home for the holidays! This was my second time flying on Northwest Airlines, but this time it was on a domestic segment….
GRAND FORKS, ND (GFK) – MINNEAPOLIS/ST. PAUL, MN (MSP)
Airline: Northwest Airlines *operated by Northwest Airlink/Mesaba Airlines
Aircraft: Saab-340 SF3
Flight Duration: 1hr 21min
Photo © Art Brett
Schedule Departure: 2:30 p.m.
Actual Departure: 2:39 p.m.
Schedule Arrival: 3:51 p.m.
Actual Arrival: 3:47 p.m.
I left the University of North Dakota campus at 11:30 p.m., giving me enough time to get to the airport, check-in and get something to eat before my scheduled 2:30 p.m. departure to Minneapolis/St. Paul. The Taxi Cab dropped me off in front of the terminal around 12:00 Noon. I walked straight up to the ticket counter, asked for my window seats and got my boarding passes within 5 minutes. After check-in I headed over to the Crosswinds restaurant to get breakfast. At 1:45 p.m. I passed through security and made my way to Gate 1. The aircraft was arriving from Thief River Falls, MN shortly after 2:00 p.m. and we already started boarding 10 minutes. I have never flown on a Saab-340 before, so I was very excited, but once I was in the plane it was very small and crowded. The flight was 100% full. I had seat 10A, a single window seat on the left side of the aircraft. At 2:30 p.m. the doors were closed, the plane was de-iced, the engines were started and we made a short taxi to runway 35L. After a short, powerful take-off, we made right turn, heading towards MSP. We passed through some clouds and after 10 minutes we’ve reached our cruising altitude of 17,000 feet. The F/A made an announcement that the plane was not catered in MSP, so she didn’t have any pretzels or beverages for us. Oh, well! It was a short flight anyway. The captain kept us well informed about the weather in MSP and the progress of the flight. After about an hour in the air, we started out decent into MSP with some light turbulence, so it got a little bumpy. We touched down on runway 30R at 3:47 p.m.. We made a fast exit from the runway and made our way to Gate A3. During taxi I’ve spotted various Northwest planes, lots of DC-9’s as well as the B757 America West “Phoenix Suns” sitting at one of the gates. We arrived at the gate right on schedule, I left the plane and made my way to Terminal C for my next and last flight.
MINNEAPOLIS/ST. PAUL, MN (MSP) – BOISE, ID (BOI)
Airline: Northwest Airlines
Aircraft: Airbus A319-100
Registration: ? (sorry, it was too dark!)
Flight Duration: 2hrs 25min
Photo © Art Brett
Scheduled Departure: 5:03 p.m.
Actual Departure: 6:14 p.m.
Scheduled Arrival: 7:09 p.m.
Actual Arrival: 7:47 p.m.
As I made my way to Terminal C, I’ve checked the monitors to see where my flight to Boise is going to leave. It said Gate C12 with an estimated departure of 7:20 p.m. which was already a 17 minute delay. I walked to the gate, the plane hasn’t arrived yet from Palm Springs so I’ve decided to grab something to eat. When I got back to the gate it said we will now depart at 7:37 p.m.. The pilots and F/A’s were also sitting at the gate waiting for the plane to arrive. Finally at 5:05 p.m. the plane arrived from Palm Springs. We started boarding at 5:20 p.m. A friendly F/A welcomed us at the door and I made my way to Seat 8A, which was right in front of the emergency exit row. It looked like the flight was about 95% full. Around 5:40 p.m. the captain came over the PA and announced that we have a small maintenance problem, which delayed our flight for another 15-20 minutes. Shortly before 6 o’clock we pushed back and made our way to runway 30R. We were No. 1 for take off and off we went into the dark evening sky. Once we’ve reached our crusing altitude of 35,000 feet, the captain apologized for the delay and informed us that we would be arriving 56 minutes late. About 30 minutes into the flight, the F/A’s came around and served pretzels and beverages. I got a small (and I mean small!) bag of pretzel and a Pepsi. The flight was smooth and I slept most of the time until we started out decent. At exactly 7:47 p.m (Mountain Time) we touched down on runway 10L and made a short taxi to the gate. The captain came over the PA and apologized once again for the delay and thanked us for flying Northwest Airlines. I left the plane, got my bags and went home.
Overall, I can’t complain! I got to my destination and I didn’t expect too much service anyway, but it was fun flying on a Saab-340 and Airbus A319.
If you have any questions or comments, please feel free to ask! Thanks for reading and Merry Christmas!