danvs
Topic Author
Posts: 179
Joined: Sat Jul 04, 2009 3:34 am

Sao Paulo-Rio: Landing At SDU On A 738

Tue Nov 23, 2010 2:37 am

http://img530.imageshack.us/img530/5976/golheader.jpg
G3 1516
CGH-SDU Oct 9 2010
PR-GGY
Push-back 10:27
Take-off 10:34
Landing 11:12
Total flying time: 38 minutes.
Cpt. Pronin

Background:
I went to Rio to participate in a congress which would take place during the holiday of Oct 12.
After getting info in a Brazilian forum regarding what airport would suit me best (considering the congress would be at one of the westernmost neighborhoods of Rio), comparing prices and schedules and weighing cost x benefit, I ended up buying CGH-SDU with Gol and GIG-CGH with TAM.

The airport:
For those who aren’t familiar with São Paulo, CGH is the second busiest airport of Brazil both in terms of passenger traffic and aircraft movements (GRU is #1). It’s the airport which offers the highest yields for airline companies among all airports in Brazil, due to the fact that most of its pax are business-related.
Situated at 2633ft above sea level, it has two parallel runways, 17L/R and 35L/R, the larger one offering 1940m (6365ft). Because of the runway length, the location (in the middle of residential and commercial areas), the number of gates and the previous accidents that took place at/near the airport (TAM F100 and A320), CGH suffers limitations and has restricted its operations to 30/hour.
Traffic at CGH are composed mainly by TAM’s A319/320 and Gol’s B73G/738, besides executive and general aviation at specific times.

The trip:

CGH was crowded, after all it was the beginning of an extended holiday.

Fortunately, I had made my online checkin, so I didn’t need to get into the check-in line at the airport.


The main lobby of the airport still boasts the architecture of the 30s (when the airport was built). It was impossible not to feel some nostalgia of the times when the Electras still operated… May be it’s even more nostalgic to those who are over 40… I simply forgot to take a picture of the lobby! Here’s a picture of it that I found on the internet:
http://www.fotolog.com.br/echotangocharlie/8489069

After passing without any problem through security, I spent my time watching the movement through the glass of the departure area. One cannot compare it with the old restaurant with an open-air terrace where one could spend the afternoons in the late 80s/early 90s watching airplanes takeoff and land.
http://img821.imageshack.us/img821/6746/dsc00408alt.jpg

My flight is the first one on the list.


Not long after I sat down to wait for my flight, a voice on the loudspeakers informs (as usual in CGH): “Passengers for flight Gol 1516…. Due to the repositioning of aircraft, boarding will take place at gate…”. Then all pax headed to the new gate. It’s incredible how they change gates at CGH, every now and then you can see flocks of pax walking from a gate to another one.

There it was, the almost brand new PR-GGY, only 8 months old! http://img163.imageshack.us/img163/8657/dsc00410alt.jpg

http://img155.imageshack.us/img155/1127/dsc00412alt.jpg

The airplane was full, but boarding was really calm.

Waiting for push-back. You can see a Gol 73G painted with VRG colors.
http://img253.imageshack.us/img253/4343/dsc00417alt.jpg

Push-back
http://img716.imageshack.us/img716/6986/dsc00420alt.jpg

Holding point of runway 17R.
http://img508.imageshack.us/img508/1200/dsc00425alt.jpg

V2... rotate!
http://img691.imageshack.us/img691/2767/dsc00427alt.jpg

Departed!


With CGO VOR out of service, we followed the RNAV Cosme C departure, with a left turn after departure.

Clear skies over the layer of clouds.
http://img299.imageshack.us/img299/7400/dsc00435alt.jpg

Space between seats is adequate for me (1,72m / 5’8 ft).
http://img230.imageshack.us/img230/6420/dsc00416alt.jpg



For such a short hop, Gol offers candies and non-alcoholic beverages for free. I wasn’t thirsty or hungry (I just wanted to enjoy the view), so I just asked for a glass of water.
http://img99.imageshack.us/img99/6263/dsc00441alt.jpg

Although it was a flight which took less than 40 minutes on the air (and with all 187 seats occupied), FAs managed to serve everybody and get all the garbage before final approach. Amazing!

View of the sea, near Ilha Grande.
http://img600.imageshack.us/img600/305/dsc00440alt.jpg

More of the blue sea.
http://img94.imageshack.us/img94/8760/dsc00443alt.jpg

Flying over SCR VOR and turning left...
http://img695.imageshack.us/img695/30/dsc00446alt.jpg

SCR VOR was the point where I would know if I would get the privileged view of the Sugar Loaf from the plane. If we continued straight ahead, that would mean we were executing STAR Afonsos 1. However, as we turned left, I knew the arrival was Nova 1 and that would mean I wouldn’t get any wonderful view of Rio… But that’s OK, I would see GIG from above!

This is the arrival we made (Nova 1):
http://i187.photobucket.com/albums/x255/danielvs/nova1.jpg

This is the arrival Afonsos 1, which offers a beautiful view of the Sugar Loaf:


If the runway in use at SDU is 02R, they make a left-hand visual circuit, offering even better views and even more impressive turns over Rio.

It was only over the large refineries of Rio outskirts that I finally could see the ground…definitely.
http://img177.imageshack.us/img177/7596/dsc00452alt.jpg

View of GIG, but no traffic taking off or landing.
http://img585.imageshack.us/img585/3540/dsc00453alt.jpg

One more turn to the right and I could see a little more of Ilha do Governador, where GIG is situated. You can see the bands of rain over Rio in the distance.
http://img228.imageshack.us/img228/5278/dsc00458alt.jpg

On final, passing over the Rio-Niteroi bridge. http://img577.imageshack.us/img577/2971/dsc00466alt.jpg

The view of Guanabara bay and its picturesque attractions is magnificent. http://img121.imageshack.us/img121/9620/dsc00469alt.jpg

Flaps down on maximum, short final runway 20L.
http://img208.imageshack.us/img208/2320/dsc00470alt.jpg

Flare!
http://img163.imageshack.us/img163/4707/dsc00471alt.jpg

Perfect landing of Cpt. Pronin in this short runway (1323m / 4340 ft). The braking/deceleration is impressive.
http://img714.imageshack.us/img714/1578/dsc00472alt.jpg

Some people preparing to fly.
http://img442.imageshack.us/img442/9140/dsc00481alt.jpg

View of the Rio-Niteroi bridge far away.
http://img242.imageshack.us/img242/284/dsc00483alt.jpg

View of the Sugar Loaf and another B738. Pic taken from the bus that took me to the terminal.
http://i187.photobucket.com/albums/x255/danielvs/DSC00486alt.jpg

Leaving SDU's lobby, I faced this beautiful painting on the wall, probably in honor of Santos Dumont.
http://i187.photobucket.com/albums/x255/danielvs/DSC00487alt.jpg

Hope you enjoyed!

[Edited 2010-11-22 18:39:44]
 
aflyingkiwi
Posts: 428
Joined: Tue Nov 16, 2010 4:52 am

RE: Sao Paulo-Rio: Landing At SDU On A 738

Tue Nov 23, 2010 3:22 am

Hi

Great trip report on Gol who seem to offer a decent service for passengers in Brazil.

I like your pictures of Sao Paulo and Rio

Quoting danvs (Thread starter):
Perfect landing of Cpt. Pronin in this short runway (1323m / 4340 ft). The braking/deceleration is impressive.

Wow! That's got to be the shortest runway that the 737 land's on.

Regards
aflyingkiwi
 
AR385
Posts: 6742
Joined: Fri Nov 07, 2003 8:25 am

RE: Sao Paulo-Rio: Landing At SDU On A 738

Tue Nov 23, 2010 4:00 am

Excellent and very original trip report. SDU is unique in so many ways. Historically it cannot be set apart from the history of Latin American civil aviation development. Operationally, it´s gotta be one of the most challenging airports out there. SDU is on a league of its own.

This trip report brought back so many memories. I was based in Rio for a few years and most of my flights were SDU-CGH-SDU. I have great memories of being seated on the right of a Rio-Sul 735 taking off and banking sharply to avoid Sugar Loaf.

The building I worked at was in Rio Branco avenue and the window of my office was located between Niteroi bridge and the threshold of SDU. The whole day I had a procession of RG, VASP, TAM and TransBrasil 737s, a320s, F100s and assorted GA jets going by my window. Amazing. To this day I don´t know how I was able to concentrate on my work.

One time we took off for CGH and enroute SDU closed due to storms. We diverted to GIG. My girlfriend was pretty pissed since she had had to face rush hour driving to SUD, and then, finding it closed, proceeded on to GIG. How often does that happen?
 
The777Man
Posts: 5926
Joined: Sun Jul 04, 1999 4:54 am

RE: Sao Paulo-Rio: Landing At SDU On A 738

Tue Nov 23, 2010 5:31 am

Very nice report! I have seen the planes land at SDU from the top of Sugarloaf and it was really neat to see them turn to come in for landing.

Thanks againf for the report!

The777Man
Boeing 777s flown: UA, TG, KE, BA, CX, NH, JD, JL, CZ, SQ, EK, NG, CO, AF, SV, KU, DL, AA, MH, OZ, CA, MS, SU, LY, RG, PE, AZ, KL, VN, PK, EY, NZ, AM, BR, AC, DT, UU, OS, AI, 9W, KQ, QR, VA, JJ, ET, TK, PR, BG, T5, CI, MU and LX.. Further to fly.. LH 777
 
akhmad
Posts: 2498
Joined: Sat Sep 03, 2005 2:20 pm

RE: Sao Paulo-Rio: Landing At SDU On A 738

Tue Nov 23, 2010 4:48 pm

Hi danvs,

I have always wanted to read a trip report involving SDU and B738. You have made my day!

Obrigado

Cheers,
Suryo
Friends forever
 
lychemsa
Posts: 1629
Joined: Sun Oct 11, 2009 8:39 pm

RE: Sao Paulo-Rio: Landing At SDU On A 738

Tue Nov 23, 2010 5:53 pm

I took the same flight in 1978, 32 years ago on a VARIG Electra.
 
palmjet
Posts: 1230
Joined: Wed Nov 21, 2001 2:35 pm

RE: Sao Paulo-Rio: Landing At SDU On A 738

Tue Nov 23, 2010 8:39 pm

Hi there. Very much enjoyed your short report - and you had some great views. Thanks very much for posting this. I also very much enjoyed your high quality pics ! Cheers Palmjet
Eastern - Number One To The Sun
 
danvs
Topic Author
Posts: 179
Joined: Sat Jul 04, 2009 3:34 am

RE: Sao Paulo-Rio: Landing At SDU On A 738

Wed Nov 24, 2010 2:09 am

Quoting aflyingkiwi (Reply 1):
Great trip report on Gol who seem to offer a decent service for passengers in Brazil.

Yes, Gol and TAM are the main airlines in Brazil, being responsible for almost 90% of the air traffic. Gol has a good safety record and flies new airplanes. Initially, Gol started with a "low-cost, low-fare" philosophy. Not long after, it abandoned the "low-fare" part  . Nowadays, it's still a little bit cheaper than TAM, but it's definitely not a low-fare company especially when compared to European/American counterparts, for example.

Quoting aflyingkiwi (Reply 1):
I like your pictures of Sao Paulo and Rio
Quoting Palmjet (Reply 6):
I also very much enjoyed your high quality pics !

Thank you for the compliment! I used a recently acquired point-and-shoot camera.

Quoting AR385 (Reply 2):
Operationally, it´s gotta be one of the most challenging airports out there. SDU is on a league of its own.

It is indeed. First officers of the main airlines are prohibited to land airplanes there; landing there is a task reserved to captains.

Quoting AR385 (Reply 2):
I have great memories of being seated on the right of a Rio-Sul 735 taking off and banking sharply to avoid Sugar Loaf.

Well, this is a really beautiful takeoff. I'll spend New Year in Rio this year (my first time) and I made sure to book a window seat on the right of the airplane to enjoy the view of the Sugar Loaf, Copacabana and Ipanema. I hope weather permits!

Quoting AR385 (Reply 2):
The whole day I had a procession of RG, VASP, TAM and TransBrasil 737s, a320s, F100s and assorted GA jets going by my window. Amazing. To this day I don´t know how I was able to concentrate on my work.

This was when SDU had tons of traffic and GIG was almost deserted. Some years ago, GIG was "reborn", taking flights from SDU, leaving it basically with Rio-SP traffic. Since then, SDU has been "reopened" to more and more domestic destinations, and its traffic is getting close again to that of GIG's.

Quoting AR385 (Reply 2):
One time we took off for CGH and enroute SDU closed due to storms. We diverted to GIG. My girlfriend was pretty pissed since she had had to face rush hour driving to SUD, and then, finding it closed, proceeded on to GIG. How often does that happen?

Rio's TMA is complex not only because of terrain but also because the main airports (SDU and GIG) are too close to each other and with runways whose approaches intersect with each other. SDU's approach procedures depend mainly on the runway(s) in use at GIG.
Besides that, SDU doesn't have an ILS. It offers a RNAV approach to runway 20L/R, with minimums of 400ft of ceiling and 2000m (1 1/4 mile). If the wind favours the use of runway 02 (which requires a visual approach), then the minimums for a circle-to-land raise to 1300ft of ceiling and 4800m (3 mi) visibility.
Whenever weather is below those minima, all arriving aircraft usually divert to GIG.

Quoting The777Man (Reply 3):

Thank you!

Quoting akhmad (Reply 4):
Obrigado

De nada!   

Quoting lychemsa (Reply 5):
I took the same flight in 1978, 32 years ago on a VARIG Electra.

Although I have flown only once in that aircraft (almost ten years after you), I do miss the Electras and the sound of their engines! They're part of my childhood.  
 
ba319-131
Posts: 8153
Joined: Sat Jan 13, 2001 1:27 pm

RE: Sao Paulo-Rio: Landing At SDU On A 738

Mon Nov 29, 2010 12:31 pm

Nice report and pictures, especially interesting as I plan to visit Brazil next year.

Thanks for sharing.

Rgds

Mark
111,732,3,4,5,7,8,BBJ,741,742,743,744,752,762,763,764,772,77L,773,77W,L15,D10,30,40,AB3,AB6,A312.313,319,320,321,332,333
 
TravelsUK
Posts: 113
Joined: Sun Dec 30, 2007 4:07 pm

RE: Sao Paulo-Rio: Landing At SDU On A 738

Wed Dec 01, 2010 4:58 pm

Quoting danvs (Thread starter):
Not long after I sat down to wait for my flight, a voice on the loudspeakers informs (as usual in CGH): “Passengers for flight Gol 1516…. Due to the repositioning of aircraft, boarding will take place at gate…”. Then all pax headed to the new gate. It’s incredible how they change gates at CGH,

They always do that at GRU too! I don't remember once having ever boarded my aircraft from the gate that was printed on my boarding 'card'!

Great TR by the way, really enjoyed it!
 
danvs
Topic Author
Posts: 179
Joined: Sat Jul 04, 2009 3:34 am

RE: Sao Paulo-Rio: Landing At SDU On A 738

Sat Dec 04, 2010 3:12 am

Quoting BA319-131 (Reply 8):
Nice report and pictures, especially interesting as I plan to visit Brazil next year.

Thank you! And welcome to Brazil next year. I hope you have a good time here, be it on business or for pleasure!  
Quoting TravelsUK (Reply 9):
They always do that at GRU too! I don't remember once having ever boarded my aircraft from the gate that was printed on my boarding 'card'!

True! It might be because GRU and CGH are always operating at their limits (limited # of gates) and any flight delay / early arrival messes everything up. Or, it's simply the result of bad management of gates by Infraero.
 
MD11Bob
Posts: 97
Joined: Tue Mar 23, 2010 6:54 pm

RE: Sao Paulo-Rio: Landing At SDU On A 738

Sun Dec 05, 2010 3:08 pm

Hi,

very good report about this classical route in Brazil, I really enjoyed reading it and also reading about Gol. CGH and SDU are indeed very special airports.

Quoting danvs (Thread starter):
You can see a Gol 73G painted with VRG colors.

I never really managed to see through the Gol/Varig operations. Does RG fly under its own name or is it like you book Gol and there might be either a Gol or a RG plane at the gate? Or can you see in the booking which one operates the flight? Because I will be in Brazil next year and I want to fly the two of them.

Quoting danvs (Thread starter):
The view of Guanabara bay

Is that an aircraft carrier on the very right side of that picture?

Again, amazing report, thanks a lot for taking us with you on that flight.

Robert
 
CPAir
Posts: 18
Joined: Sun Apr 11, 2010 8:56 pm

RE: Sao Paulo-Rio: Landing At SDU On A 738

Sun Dec 05, 2010 6:43 pm

Daniel

Very nice report. I miss the Electras too.
I work in Gloria neihborhood and my window has a view to SDU. I can tell you, I witness several missed approaches there.
 
danvs
Topic Author
Posts: 179
Joined: Sat Jul 04, 2009 3:34 am

RE: Sao Paulo-Rio: Landing At SDU On A 738

Tue Dec 07, 2010 1:09 am

Quoting MD11Bob (Reply 11):
is it like you book Gol and there might be either a Gol or a RG plane at the gate?

Exactly. They're all Gol operated flights, some of them in airplanes with RG painting scheme.
You won't be able to see during booking whether the airplane will be wearing a G3 painting or a RG painting scheme.

Quoting MD11Bob (Reply 11):
Is that an aircraft carrier on the very right side of that picture?

Yes, isn't it interesting?
I think it's the A12 "Sao Paulo":
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Brazili...t_carrier_S%C3%A3o_Paulo_%28A12%29

Quoting CPAir (Reply 12):
I can tell you, I witness several missed approaches there.

I can imagine, that must be quite interesting!

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