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LAX To DC Via RIC On NW For Inauguration (pics)

Tue Jan 27, 2009 4:02 am

The pictures in this trip report are mainly from one segment (DTW-RIC) of a five-segment roundtrip from LAX to RIC for the presidential inauguration weekend. I only took pictures on this flight because I was actually awake for it and the flight was a new type and airport for me. The entire trip was LAX-MSP-DTW-RIC-MSP-LAX.

Route: LAX-MSP
Date: January 18, 2009
Flight #: NW 314
Aircraft: 757-200
Scheduled Departure: 12:20am
Scheduled Arrival: 5:59am
Flight Time: 3:29
Seat: 2D first

This flight was uneventful. The boarding area was crazy because an Air China 747-400 was leaving at the same time as my flight. This was a red-eye flight and nothing interesting happened except that during almost the entire flight we had mild turbulence. It was the rocky/bumpy type, which was more annoying than anything because it kept waking me up. After I landed I had a 3 hour layover so I decided to go upstairs in the main terminal to the quiet sitting area. There were very few people there and I slept on two chairs for about 2 hours. It was great after my turbulence-ridden flight.

Route: MSP-DTW
Date: January 18, 2009
Flight #: NW
Aircraft: DC-9-50
Scheduled Departure: 9:10am
Scheduled Arrival: 12:01pm
Flight Time: 1:10
Seat: 5F coach

Again, this flight was uneventful. We had to de-ice because it was about 15 degrees that morning and lightly snowing. I slept the entire flight.

Route: DTW-RIC
Date: January 18, 2009
Flight #: NW 1810 operated by Compass
Aircraft: E175
Aircraft Registration: N635CZ
Scheduled Departure: 2:03pm
Scheduled Arrival: 3:41pm
Flight Time: 1:15
Seat: 2D first

Route from

My layover in DTW was 2 hours this time. I took some pictures of my plane. As mentioned before, this was my first time on a NW E175. I previously flew on a F9 E170 and loved it. It feels like a large plane and not a regional jet. Anyway, here is a picture of my plane. I hate those dots on the windows in DTW.

I took a picture of the dirty seatback in front of me

I was the only person in my row so I got to take some pictures of the seats.

And of course I had to take a picture of the legroom. I found these seats to be very comfortable. I had read that some people were complaining about the hardness of the seats on the E175s, but I didn’t think they were uncomfortable at all.

Another great thing about the E175 is the size and location of the windows. They are huge and so perfectly placed unlike those on CRJ-200s.

Our gate was A63 and we were right next to the tower.

This flight was very good but sort of odd in some ways. The pilot made an announcement introducing himself while standing in front of the plane in view of everyone. He used his first name only and also introduced the co-pilot by his first name too. There were two flight attendants – a male one in coach and a female one in first. They were both very nice, but the one in first class was an electronics device Nazi. I had my camera out while we were pushing back and she said, “Can you put that away for take-off?” She also snapped at the man in row 1 during taxiing who had his camera or phone in his hand. She accusingly said, “Did you just turn that on?” as if she were a second grade teacher. It was so strange. From her seat, she had a direct line of view of me, so I couldn’t take any pictures during taxi and take-off. We had a very strong take-off and it was like a rocket. The coach cabin was completely full and the first cabin had 9 out of 12 seats full. The other thing that was surprising about the plane was that there was no garment closet. It wasn’t a big deal, but I just expected one because the plane seems so large. The rest of the flight was fine. The first class snacks were fruit and different cookies and candy.

These pictures have nothing to do with the trip report, but it was the purpose of my trip.

People walking from Arlington across Memorial Bridge

Just a few million people

This one was after the president’s address. Everyone looks so happy even though it was about 20 degrees not including the wind chill.

Route: RIC-MSP
Date: January 21, 2009
Flight #: NW 3314 operated by Mesaba
Aircraft: CRJ
Scheduled Departure: 7:30am
Scheduled Arrival: 9:43am
Flight Time: 2:44
Seat: 3D coach

This flight was horrible although none of it was the airline’s fault, I was just miserable just about the entire time. The temperature was in the 20s the whole week and this morning it was about 14 degrees. The CRJ had sat out in the cold overnight and was frigid. I was one of the first people to enter the plane and I could see my breath inside the plane. I never took my coat off the entire flight because I was so cold. The heat eventually came on but I only felt it on my feet. To make matters worse, I sat next to a guy who played his video game with the volume on so everyone could hear it. He played it the entire time electronic devices were allowed. It was so loud, I put my ipod on and fell asleep almost the whole flight. The other thing that was horrible about this flight was that it was on a CRJ. From the time I boarded to deplaning, I was on that thing for well over 3 hours. The seats are so small and the window size and location suck. The one interesting thing that happened was that on our descent we had to pull up and go around again because as the captain said, we were about to overtake another aircraft on a parallel runway. I don’t think that made any sense to me, but it was a little scary when we pulled up hard and gained a lot of altitude quickly. In the flightaware map you can see how we made a loop just before landing in MSP.

After we landed I got a coffee and headed to the observation deck. I was the only person there for most of the time. I took some pictures. You can tell that it is cold. I think it was either 10 or 12 degrees that morning. You’d think that I was used to the cold after spending 4 hours out in the cold on the national mall during the inauguration.

Route: MSP-LAX
Date: January 21, 2009
Flight #: NW 623
Aircraft: 757-300
Scheduled Departure: 11:30am
Scheduled Arrival: 1:21pm
Flight Time: 3:10
Seat: 3C first but moved to 4D to accommodate other travelers

After a little over a 1.5 hour layover, it was time to board the 753 back home. This flight was full in first class. There were some other people that had gone to DC for the inauguration too because I could tell by their conversations. This flight was very normal. The meal choices were a salad or a ham and swiss sandwich. I had the sandwich. We ended up landing very early and I had my luggage in hand by the time we were actually scheduled to land. It was very unusual for LAX luggage to come out so quickly.

What a treat to land at LAX and see the Qantas A380 and the Emirates 777-200LR

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RE: LAX To DC Via RIC On NW For Inauguration (pics)

Tue Jan 27, 2009 4:06 am

Good to read about the day's events from a different perspective.
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RE: LAX To DC Via RIC On NW For Inauguration (pics)

Tue Jan 27, 2009 4:27 am

Judging by your photos you were standing on the north side of the washington monument, and judging by the fact that your photos look identical to mine, we were within 15 feet of each other and more than likely saw each other... small world.

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RE: LAX To DC Via RIC On NW For Inauguration (pics)

Tue Jan 27, 2009 5:16 am

Great report. A quick question: How were the first class seats in the 752 and 753 compared to each other and to the E175? Leather/cloth, comfortable, enough legroom, etc. Thanks!  Smile
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RE: LAX To DC Via RIC On NW For Inauguration (pics)

Tue Jan 27, 2009 5:45 pm

Quoting Soxfan (Reply 3):
Great report. A quick question: How were the first class seats in the 752 and 753 compared to each other and to the E175? Leather/cloth, comfortable, enough legroom, etc. Thanks! Smile

I found the first class seats to be better and more comfortable on the E175 than the 757s. I think the recline was better on the E175s too. According to seatguru the pitch and seat width are better on the 757s, but the E175 seemed to have more space. Also, the E175s were leather covered and the 752s and 753s were cloth covered. The 757s do have footrests, so that's one thing those seats have over the E175s.
-"...never have I been a blue calm sea, I have always been a storm"
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RE: LAX To DC Via RIC On NW For Inauguration (pics)

Tue Jan 27, 2009 8:50 pm

Sorry to hear about your sleepless redeye. I can imagine that wouldn't be to pleasant. Good pictures too.
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RE: LAX To DC Via RIC On NW For Inauguration (pics)

Wed Jan 28, 2009 3:19 am

Great TR! Lol, I loved the NW pics in MSP and the US Carolina Panthers lgojet in the middle of it lol. The E175 look much better in NWA livery. I need to fly em soon before they become Delta  Sad.
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RE: LAX To DC Via RIC On NW For Inauguration (pics)

Wed Jan 28, 2009 3:14 pm

Very good TR

Pity about your sleepless redeye flight, but seems you sleep at the airport at least.

Really annoying about that flight attendant on your DTW-RIC route

Hope you enjoyed your inauguration day!!

Thank you for sharing

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