Credit to the photographs

I would like to thank Brian Losisto (Air Canada's photographer) for always allowing me to post his pictures. (The above thrust lever pic is his). Then there is Kelly Paterson from Calgary and plane spotter "Erik" from Germany. Of course, I have lots myself. On that note, if you feel a photo(s) may be in appropriate or the content I post a bit dubious by all means send me an email. I will ratify it! That's all I ask!
P.S I'd like to add Nadia from "la belle province" for her contributions!
...and YYC Disptacher...

...I hope you enjoy the blog...


The latest "Readbacks"

From "Getjets" Flight 907 from MCO to YYZ

Sunday, January 30, 2011

Checked out on Ixtapa (Mexico)

Flight 1892 Toronto to Ixtapa's weather chart. One can see our route superimposed indicating we had to traverse two jet streams. Over New Orleans the jet was forecast to be out of the west at 110 knots with some bumps. Note the wind read out in the next pic in the top left hand corner (275 degrees at 115 knots). Pretty damn accurate on the weather man's part.

Getjets (Misstwa) ^J^ This picture is for you! We flew over your home. I looked for you but I couldn't see much at 38,000 feet. I guess you were partying during Mardi Gras!

Captain Doug the tourist.

A shot of Ixtapa's control tower. It was a cute little airport.

The city of Ixtapa. Please note this picture was over the airport at 12,000 feet in the climb while we set course to the frigid north.

Well Captain Doug got to add another airport on the list of many. The day proved very uneventful. The flight there was 5:30 and the return 4:40. Duty time 12:40. Just twenty minutes short of maxing out. Actually we have the option of exceeding it by two hours with everyone's concurrence. Just a deice or stronger headwinds would have pushed us into the duty envelope. Any major hiccups and Captain Doug and the gang would be practicing their Spanish, "Hola, cerveza, por favor" on an Ixtapa layover. :)

Getjets (Misstwa) ^J^
We flew directly over your hometown. I was going to wave and yell out your name but it would not be good for job security. The F/O would have said "go on oxygen" or "I have control!" Plus I should have got the F/O to do it...he was 12 years younger, ripped and better looking. LOL :)

Neither the F/O or myself have been to Ixtapa. I made sure I had approach charts to the airport. I learned my lesson years ago while flying to Munich, Germany. I won't say anymore. :)

Much to my dismay the airport had no precision approaches just VOR approaches typical of the Caribbean and Mexico. Oh great!

Then I checked the official briefing notes to the airport. It tells us about time zones, climate and who generally services the airplane.

But both the F/O chuckled when we read this:

Large Iguanas (two feet long) have been reported on the runway. Iguanas are not well disciplined and reportedly will proceed on the runway without a clearance!

I did ask the F/O whether he saw any Iguanas while on approach. He jokingly said, "No, but I was looking." :)

I was hoping it would tell me there are some big hills and the lowest you can descend is 6000 feet over the airport. Then you will probably end up doing the VOR A approach to 08 circling for 26 with the longest procedure turn you will see in a long time.

W started the long procedure turn, of which I have not done in years. I saw one little cloud in the sky and visibility was unlimited. So I thought enough of this and asked if we could do the left visual onto runway 26.

ATC came back, "cleared as requested." It doesn't hurt to ask. :)

The F/O did a great job!

All the passengers were happy we arrived five minutes early except one. His flight from Kingston, Ontario (about a 3 hour drive to Toronto) was cancelled. He took a cab costing $400! Ouch! (TWN Chris, if you are reading this, you could have made a few bucks yesterday while driving to work.) :)

The F/O and I walked around taking pictures. Then one employee came up to me pointing to the sign, "NO PICTURES ALLOWED!" Captain Doug was close to losing his camera.

Reminds me of the time the cruise pilot did a walk around in New Delhi, India. Security confiscated his camera as he took pictures of his own airplane.

Maybe the threat of losing one's camera should have been mentioned in the briefing notes instead of possibly squishing a two foot Iguana. lol

I'm typing fast. I'm out the door to bring a full load of passengers to see Mickey Mouse.

The life of an airline pilot. :)


Nathaniel said...

I remember in Bermuda an employee yelling at me not to take pictures, but he was too late :)
I dont know you manage the tease of going to mexico for a couple of hours and then coming back to the cold.

Great Post,


getjets said...

Captain Doug, Simply put, you made my day...week whatever....i was tracking your flight..using both "flightaware" and "Passur aerospace"(live airport monitor) monitoring out of KMSY, with an 80 miles max, and there you were as well! There's probably a few minute delay for security reasons...but almost "real time" was good enough for my heart racing, so no tread mill for the next Forget Mickey, give "Foghorn Leghorn" and Twitty Bird", a wink for me, at least that way, no one else will see, and accuse the good Captain of being a 'softie', ha ha ^j^

getjets said...

In addition,and more Importantly Thank You Very Very Much, for the pictures!!!!!!! All of them!!!! I was thinking that when you finally landed, if the ATC would say something to the effect: Welcome to lxtapa,, once passed the road(runway kill) go ahead and make a right on the first 'dirt road' to get to termainal....ha ha;) Shame on me! YESTERDAY....Was very Eventful for Me!!!!
Home safe and sound today Captain, and thats an order!!!!

getjets said...

Last but not far as telling me hello from 38 Thou...I am not interested in the "second in command"!So I missed out on a perfectly good "barbie wave"..always next time^j^

YOWJeff said...

Captain Doug, a little OT from this post, but I was reading some of your older posts. Last year you were #1276 on the seniority list, has the new list come out yet? You mentioned you were about 350 spots from hopping to the 767, is that still the natural progression for you at this point? thanks!

WILLO2D said...

Hi Doug, just a quick one - or two...

"...the airport had no PRECESSION approaches just VOR approaches..."; is that like a slow spinning approach until you disappear up your own jet-pipes?

"...Large Iguanas (two feet long) have been reported on the runway..." = Does the "Chicken Salad" taste a little different today?

Sorry, three - that northerly jetstream is looking to dump some of your Canadian snow over Scotland and N.England later this week... Thanks Doug ;)

Take it easy up there

Cheers / IanH

getjets said...

To WILLO2D, "Does the chicken salad taste a little different..", Thats Funny!!!!!!! The only Iguanas I ever saw(movies...) always seemed to be hanging out on top of people's where chicken salad is concerned, maybe thats close enough to the inside of the frig.....YUK!! and make sure you check the expiration dates, just pick them up, and look on their belly for it...YUK Again...ok, I'm done..."Slimy yet satisfying" straight outa "lion King" (the movie) misstwa said...

Doug .. $400 for a cab YGK-YYZ - robbery - the Jazz/Georgian flight isn't that much - I'd take him and return him next weekend for an even $200 - plus he buys at Tim Hortons .. Fly safe - (are you in and out of YYZ this Tue/Wed?) Big snows are coming..

getjets said...

FYI-----"THIS DAY IN AVIATION HISTORY"---1942 – Arrow Airways and Canadian Airways merged to form Canadian Pacific Airlines. This airline would later be sold to Pacific Western Airlines in 1987, renaming the paired company Canadian Airlines International. This operation would later be absorbed by Air Canada in 2000 (POP QUIZ TOMORROW) HA

Bryan said...

hey, i'm from kingston, ontario too! F.O. represent!

Jim B said...

From getjets
"THIS DAY IN AVIATION HISTORY"---1942 – Arrow Airways and Canadian Airways merged to form Canadian Pacific Airlines. This airline would later be sold to Pacific Western Airlines in 1987, renaming the paired company Canadian Airlines International. This operation would later be absorbed by Air Canada in 2000"

Why do I get the feeling you also read the NYC Aviation blog? LOL :}

Leanne said...

I'm from Kingston, Ontario as well! I've missed that flight many times, it does suck. Captain Doug, I really enjoy your blog - thanks for all the cool posts!

getjets said...

Turns out its more than a feeling Jim........ mistwa

Bryan said...

wow, who would have thought so many kingston people reading captain doug's blog! i guess that shows just how popular it is!

Keep up the good posts Doug!


Anonymous said...

Captain Doug,

Just back home from Mexico on AC1865, our crew tonight had a bit of a rough day after the inbound flight managed to flood out the back of the plane with a burst potable water hose! CUN airport was a tad on the warm side for the five hour wait and our 'welcome home' of -28 in YYC was NOT kind at all! A two and a half hour delay makes for a longer day too!

Apparently the YVR based crew that does the flight down to CUN gets a 48 hour layover, no wonder the crew looked a little 'senior'!

Do you enjoy the 'non-precision' approaches into the major airports in Mexico and the Caribbean or do they just increase the workload? Is the 'baby bus' an easy aircraft to setup for a non-precision approach?

Any idea when you might be heading over to the 'dark side' and into Boeing equipment, when is the next equipment bid due?

YYC Dispatcher

Anonymous said...

Your comment about the Iguanas made me laugh Captain D.
It reminded me of a skydiving event this year in the UK when an aircraft took off with around 10 skydivers from an aerodrome somewhere in the English countryside but then having to turn back due to poor visibility. As the plane was coming in to land, a horse from a nearby field just casually trotted onto the active runway (grass patch) and the pilot had to initiate a go-around. Horse burgers were nearly on the menu that night!


From the Flight Deck said...

Nathaniel. Glad you snuck in a few pictures at the airport. They are willing to take your money for airport taxes and improvements and
yet they won't let you take pictures. :)

Bermuda is neat spot. It's where Captain Doug and the "boss" tied the knot nearly 21 years ago. :)

As far as teasing the mind...when I see the reactions of the passengers griping the cold when they arrive back to reality...I am not sure which is worse? lol

I think it's time Captain Doug head south for some vitamin "D."

Thanks for the comments!

Captain Doug

From the Flight Deck said...

Getjets. Not interested in "second in command?" One day he to will be captain. lol

From the Flight Deck said...

YOWJeff. Yes, the new seniority list came out. Captain Doug is now #1171. There's just under 3100 pilots. I moved up 105 numbers. Actually I will be posting on this very topic within a week. :)

Yes, I am starting to look at the B767 a little harder as it taxis by. It's slowly getting closer.

It's like walking by a very attractive can admire...but that's as far as it goes. lol

Captain Doug

From the Flight Deck said...

Hi Chris. I mentioned to the F/O the same thing...$400 is a lot of money! I bet most cabbies don't make that in a regular day. :)

That was the problem...either Jazz or Georgian cancelled the flight. A lot of people push it as far as connections.

I'll be arriving early Wednesday from an LAX "red eye." Looks like it will be interesting.

I'm still waiting for Kelly to finalize things. Looks like Tuesday and Wednesday would be good days to film the CDF in operation. :)


From the Flight Deck said...

Getjets. Thank you for the aviation trivia. The word ABSORB sure takes on many, many meanings.
This is from a guy that saw and FELT it transpire. :)

Captain Doug

From the Flight Deck said...

Leanne, Bryan, and of course TWN Chris. Thanks for all the comments from Kingston.

My eldest daughter loves Kingston. She is at Queens (2nd year engineering).

Captain Doug

getjets said...

Certainly NO Disrespect towards Your or any F/O's!!!! Simply a point I was making!!!! ^j^

"This day in Aviation(or anything)History", Perhaps should stay exactly that>>>>HISTORY only in memory....
Hoping all is well with your family!
misstwa ^j^

Juan Carlos G. said...

"Welcome to lxtapa,, once passed the road(runway kill) go ahead and make a right on the first 'dirt road' to get to termainal....ha ha;)"

We do have regular taxiways in Mexico you know? And no, we don´t sleep a siesta every day. Might want to be having a little more respect to fellow cultures.

From the Flight Deck said...

Juan Carlos G

Oops...I guess someone went a little too far.
I'm certain it was all in fun but.....

You are correct....this blog has readers from many countries!

Actually taxiway B was NOTAMed (notice to airmen) closed. But when we landed the taxiway was open with brand new asphalt and newly painted markings. A few months ago I flew to Cozumel. There I was greeted with a new asphalt runway and
taxiways. And there is lots going on in Cancun!
Puerta Vallarta looks like they just had a new terminal built as well.
I haven't been to Mexico City, but the pilots love the layover hotel.

Again, I'm certain what was said, was said in jest. :)

Thanks Juan for your comments!

Captain Doug

From the Flight Deck said...

YYC Dispatcher

Yes, a 48 hour layover would certainly attract the senior crowd. It's a paid vacation. :)

As far as non-precesion approaches the work load goes up BIG time. Having said that, VFR conditions usually prevail so we tend to disconnect and fly it manually. gives a little bit of freed up time to enjoy the gorgeous scenery.

We will soon be getting GNSS approaches in the "small bus" so hopefully things will get that much easier!

We just had an equipment bid and I moved about 40 numbers closer to the "dark side." But realistically it's about two more years away. We need Boeing to get their act together with the B787. When they start to will be HOLD ON TO YOUR HAT!!!!

Gone flying. :)

Captain Doug

From the Flight Deck said...

Hi Ed. Horse burgers! lol I could write a long post on airplanes/airports and animals.

When I was a weatherman one weather report came in with a comment at the end...MOOSE LOOSE ON RUNWAY.

Running into a 1500 pound moose could have made for some moose burgers.

Thanks Ed for your story!

Captain Doug

getjets said...

Dear Juan Carlos G, Please accept my Heartfelt Apology for my insensitive remarks!!!!! Yes, they were said in jest,and not meant to hurt anyone,The remarks were Extremely Disrespectful and only proved my own ignorance!!!!

To Captain Doug, I Publicly apologize to you as well, This is your medium, and in no way would I ever want to tarnish your good name!!! Better care will be taken in the future!!

Again Mr. Carlos G, I hope you will accept my apology!!! misstwa

From the Flight Deck said...

Getjets. Well said! I knew you would rise to the occasion and put this fire out. Thank you!

I'm off to LAX (Los Angeles) for a 24 hour layover. The only glitch is I have to bring a "red eye" back Wednesday morning. And rumour has it, a snow storm may be greeting me. :)

The price I have to pay to get some vitamin D.

Captain Doug

whywhyzed said...

re: "Yes, the new seniority list came out...."

My understanding in 'working the system' is that it isn't a great idea to bid the next plane up as soon as you qualify.

If you do, you'll be the most junior pilot in the pool and there's a good chance you'll be on reserve - which sucks. I know, I have a friend who is a 67 skipper and he bid too early.

The bad news is, depending on pax loads, you sit at home for possibly weeks on end. The good news is, you still get paid!!! Doug -- do I have this correct? (!!)
(Can you say "Dream Job?")

From the Flight Deck said...

Whywhyzed. You pegged it! That's why I don't commute. I'm very close to work so it makes being on reserve more palatable.

True, you have to wait for the phone to ring, but it has its advantages. Some very senior flying comes your way...senior routes one would never hold
if they held a "block." You see, there is a silver lining in all of this.

For me, it's time for a change. (In more ways than one!)

I'm out the door for L.A!

Maybe I'll have someone famous on board. These flights attract those types. Even if they are not, some think it. LOL

Captain LAX

Daniel said...

Someone needs to clean that ND ;)

Juan Carlos G. said...

Allright, apology accepted.

It´s ok to be fun and you don´t need to overdo your answer. Maybe we are also a little bit sensitive, but comments can have disrespectful connotations and be misunderstood.

Blue skies,


getjets said...

Juan Carlos G, Your words ring true...I have learned a lot from Captain Doug and his followers and friends!!!! Today I learned a valuable lesson from you!!!!I Love Aviation...and it is Ok to have fun, as well....looking back, I have been guilty of 'overdoing' with my comments and many of my exchanges here...the last thing I want is to alienate the very people here that I do admire so much!!!!! Thank You for accepting my apology!!!

Juan Carlos G. said...

Well you sure are quick to answer!

I accept, that my response was rude and agressive, so then we are even.

I am also really happy you have understood my trouble with the comment. You wouldn´t laugh if someone would make a similar comment about any airport in the US, right?

It´s all part of the interesting intercultural understanding which proves again to be hard at times.

Blue skies!


getjets said...

Agreed...I would not have appreciated the reverse comments on my US Airports!! Understanding the complex nature of an interculturial world, certainly worth the effort!! Ok, so then we are even Mr Carlos. and I wish you the "Bluest of skies"from now on!!!! misstwa signing off for now..

From the Flight Deck said...


Sorry for the tardy reply.

For some reason I was not prompted by email about your comments. That's the first time i saw that happen.

That's the second time spell check tricked me to accepting the spelling for precision. :)
Thanks for pointing that out. I fixed it. :)

As far as the chicken salad and iguanas, all crew meals taste the same. I offer the F/O their first choice because I aver, "they all taste the same."
But like my mother used to say, "if you are hungry enough then you will eat it."

We are just digging out of a major snowstorm. It certainly gave the media lots to talk about. :)

Enjoy Canada's snow! lol

Captain Doug