!!!!! GONE FLYING !!!!!

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Wednesday, October 12, 2011

CYYJ Victoria B.C

On the climb out of Victoria this summer. You can see Mount Baker and the hills to the south. It's why Victoria is the best place to live (climatologically) in Canada because it could be raining in Vancouver but not Victoria. The meteorological term is "subsidence." And yes the pic was taken above 10,000 feet.

Yesterday was a long one. A 4:30 flight from Vancouver to Toronto, then a five hour flight to Victoria.
We noticed on the flight plan our fuel overhead Victoria was a few hundred kilos over the number in which I start writing paperwork. 

During the walk around I asked the fueler to slip a bit of "granny fuel" on board. I rarely do this. My meteorological senses were tingling. The TAF (aviation forecast) for Victoria forecasted a significant wind shift from the southeast to westerly about two hours prior to out arrival. Guess what? The shift didn't happen until we were on approach. We were taking about 50 knots up the behind and when you are descending on a three degree glideslope you can't slow down and get down. Solution? Drop the gear earlier and let those anchors with wheels slow you up. The winds did abate as we descended to short final but it ups the workload especially when you are looking at the fuel. 

The runway 09-27 in Victoria is as short as the ones in LaGuradia, about 7000 feet so it's a get on get off runway. Medium braking worked tickety-booh. :)))

Needless to say it was Miller time after that. :))))

Harbour Air based in Victoria Harbour

Today on my 35 hour layover, I decided to check out our "jump seat reciprocal" policy with Harbour Air. But they informed me I had to call their 1-800 number to arrange things. She did offer a half price ticket in the mean time. No thanks. 

I thought I would hop a flight to Vancouver (harbour) and then fly back. I should have approached them earlier in the morning. And I should have known their operations stopped at dusk and unfortunately the flights were filling up. I guess it wouldn't look good if the skipper got stuck in Vancouver for the night. My F/O told me a recent captain of his hitched a ride over to Vancouver, but due to high winds the operation shut down. He had to scramble back to the Vancouver Airport and bum a ride with Jazz. 

Next time! I've never been in a float plane and it's time to put it on my "to do" list. 

Nice to see my name.
While walking aimlessly looking for a Tim Hortons (I needed a fix) I had to take a picture of this street. It's one of the only things I can find fault with downtown Victoria...lack of Tim Hortons. But then again, maybe that's a good thing. :)))


On my last layover here, my wife and son tagged along. "Number one" queried why I took a picture of butterflies. Heck, they are aviators too! lol

But this picture is indicative of the diversity of the "commenters" on my blog. You guys are very civil, polite, diverse and all have a love of aviation. Some like the "nuts and bolts," some like the "dirt," some want to read about being an airline pilot and yet some want to knock me off my pedestal (yes, there are some lurking) and yet others are attracted  to the aura and romance of aviation. My point....there is enough virtual space for everyone...no matter what your aviation take. :)))

Captain D


Unknown said...

A couple of years ago I flew on a float equipped Twin Otter from Victoria to Vancouver. That made it floats, wheels and skis on the Twin Otter for me. Now I just have to find a Series 400 to get a ride on without having to go to the Seychelles. Good luck in the coming weeks.

Adam aka "The Winnipeger" said...

Hey Captain Doug,
Tickety Booh, One of my favourite sayings!!
What is the highest altitude you have ever flown at?
Safe Flying,

The Winnipeger,

Captain Doug said...

Adam. It was 41,000 on the A330. For the small bus it's 39,000 feet.

Captain Doug said...

Unknown. I haven't seen that call sign before. Anon, yes, but not unknown. Good luck? I guess you mean with the labour unrest?

Just had a note slipped under my hotel door, it looks like it's normal operations for tomorrow.

Heather said...

Greeting Doug!

Nice posting as per usual! I guess I fall under the 'what's it like to be a pilot' and the 'romance of aviation' groupings! I do find the nuts and bolts interesting but my mind tends to wander when there's too many numbers and letters all strung together...let's just say I have an attention span of ...ooh look, another plane! :) hehe...

Exactly. :P

Enjoy the remaining hours of your layover!


carlton said...

Victoria is great, Elana and I once took a Whale watching tour from Vancouver to Victoria - and we saw lots of Seals lol! No Tim Hortons though? hmmm...

Regarding your last comment, we all appreciate the time you take to inform and teach us all things aviation - and as you say we all have a love for aviation ; )

Now question time - you used the landing gear for braking effect, but what is the approximate maximum speed that you can lower the landing gear?

Cheers for now,


Bas said...

Hahahaha Heather! That's one awesome picture you got there on the climb out, we don't have snowy mountains here at all. (Nor mountains that is xD)

Enjoyed as always!

igloocoder said...


If you get the chance to fly Harbour Air into Coal Harbour (YCHX) do it. I have from Nanaimo (YZNA) and coming over Stanley Park and then nosing down aggressively into YCHX is a blast.

Craig R said...

I love Victoria, but I agree the short runway (ending in water in either direction) always makes arrival and departure somewhat exciting.

Years ago we were on short final at Victoria - almost on the runway - when the pilot abruptly pulled up for a go-around. Shortly afterward, he made an announcement to the effect that there was some unexpected ground traffic and we would go around and try it again, while "a student pilot at the Royal Victoria Flying Club might need a new pair of pants."

Captain D - there are a few Timmies franchises in YYJ. You can download a free app for your Blackberry called TimmyMe ... it uses the GPS to show you the closest locations nearby. Absolutely essential for anyone who travels! You can also get it for iPhone.

Craig R

Cedarglen said...

Tope of the morning Capt. Doug! As always, a great post. You touhced on one of my fav subjects, Fuel. Yup, I know that you'll write about it in detail one of these days. Also enjoyed your re-welcome to all comers. Unlike other blogs, I always read, enjoy and learn from the comments posted here by other fans. Most names are recognized and it is often like a conversation with friends with diverse interests. I've yet to see an inappropriate remark and do not expect any from the resident ladies (in red?) and gentlemen. Glad to hear that the FAs are talking instead of walking. They certainly have issues, but the 'assisted talking' will probably get them resolved sooner... Lastly, I do hope that you have your first float plane ride soon. It is an absolute gas! One of my earlies flights and the very first in a single engine airplane was in a wheeled-float Beaver, about 1963 or 64. (I know, it dates me a bit.) We did two cycles on water and two on land, experiences that this 'kid' will never forget. And that 'round' engine was the loudest thing I'd ever heard. Silly things rememberd as the "Acting F/O:" The engine oil filler was inside the cockpit, at my left knee. Trust me, you will remember your first! Regards to you and to all. If you have no firms plans for the enforced vacation, you might consult with Number One. I'll bet she has some highly production suggestions for you! -Craig (of Cedarglen).

getjets said...

Hey Captain...."Another Great Post":))))))
One Road trip coming up.....!!!!pick up Christer....and head this way.....I live just due southwest of the "Stinky Swamp"...or look for bloomers (great GPS device,as well) flapping in the wind...

That is one Wicked looking tail..so the B757 Iron Maiden fly around.....do you know who owns it???? leased???

YEP....there are some characters here....

plenty of 'Nuts'

some with 'loose screws'

never enough 'Dirt'

'pedestal dumpers'....only for the Pedestaleeee to be reinstated to said pedestal..:))))

and yes like Heather....the romance, the glamour...reminiscing of both....

our resident "Rapper"..Craig R.....that was good!!!!

and one of my favs...."Pilot envy"......looking a little green...

lets not forget....the "waiting in the WINGS(YES PUN)...FOR THE DREADED
It was that very phrase that led me to this blog
the "climbing like a Homesick Angel"...another fav!!!!

Drama QUEENS....OH YES.....LOL

Yes, us MICE need to stick together.....here....
one Alpha Mouse at a time...

enjoy your vacation Captain Doug!!!!!!
remember all have an Open Invitation....here to Cajun Country!!!!!
and not to sound like a broken record.....but Thank You Captain...for all your effort, and this lovely place I call 'home'...

I just got my October EnRoute...haven't opened yet...
curl up tonite, and yes one big glass of wine....and Enjoy.....

"Lady Red"...signing off for now....

Cedarglen said...

For the Lady in Red (or with Red Bloomers on the clothesline), heck yes!! We mice will stick together! When our Captain goes flying, we'll play. Your notes always leave me LMAO and I'm glad that you're with us.
Christer, Doug got it right on all three measures, including the talent. I've heard a few clips and found a CD in my library. This fussy old fart is in delighted to have your music gracing my home and we are fortunate to have you on the team. (And thanks for the notes about how you protect your 'music machine.') Every few years we read a painful story about something lost in baggage or left in a cab and I just hate reading them. I can not imagine what horrors the losee myst go through. Please continue being careful. -Craig (of Cedarglen)

Captain Doug said...


LOL. As you are well aware... this blog is testosterone driven so it's a pleasant sight to see you and a couple of others comment from a female point of view.

Landed in Toronto this afternoon marking ten days of vacation. Because of some issues (no they are not work related) I'll be walking away from the computer for a while.

I always appreciated your take on things!

Thanks Heather (I know I told you a thousand times, but I have a sister named Heather).

Captain Doug

Captain Doug said...

Carlton. There are tons of whaling sightseeing boats sitting idle. I guess it's that time of year.

Landing gear extension? Vlo "to hang it out" is 250 knots. Vle "to leave it out and go fast" is 280 knots.
But keep in mind within 10 miles and 3000 feet AGL of an airport the max speed limit is 200 knots.

Carlton as I mentioned to Heather, I'm going to take it easy for a week or so.

I wish you and Elana all the best!

Captain Doug

Captain Doug said...

Hi Bas. Thanks for checking in. For a young guy you sure have been blessed with tact and wisdom.

I'll be taking a vacation in the next while so I wish you all the best with your blogging!

You are an "ace!"

Captain Doug

Captain Doug said...

YYC Dispatcher. Yes, things went smoothly with the flight attendants today.

I always enjoyed your professional perspective on things.

I'm taking a little hiatus.

I hope another meeting with you and I will come soon.

Captain Doug

Captain Doug said...

Craig R. LOL about the Timmies. I noticed the farther you go out of town the place gets littered with them. I think they are protecting the downtown
core's designer coffee emporiums. Much too classy (and expensive) for me. LOL

Craig. You brought much wit and wisdom to my blog. You and others always tell how well I'm doing so now it's my turn.

I guess your travelling never stops and maybe we will meet one day? Who knows you may even meet others that dabble in blogging. :)

Thanks Craig R

Captain Doug

Captain Doug said...

Craig Of Cedarglen. Even though some of your comments tended to be on the long side they were always packed with good stuff!

And you are right, this blog has been very civil and the frequent commenters it attracted have been awesome!!!!

But as I alluded to before there is lots of stuff behind the scenes. So on that note I've elected to take a break and take orders from number one for the
next ten days or so.

This blog will miss your words of wisdom!

Captain Doug

Captain Doug said...

Getjets. Our most vivacious commenter by far!

Looks like Captain Doug will hand over the reigns to my "blog F/O." :)))

You've been around long enough to handle the ropes.

I hesitate to think what direction this blog would take without you challenging it's course every day.

I saved the best for last as far as telling you I will be taking a break.

(And for those dying to know.... I will tell you... it has nothing to do with my airline or co-worker)

It's on a personal level.

I'm gonna miss ya Getjets

Captain Douglas ^D^


getjets said...

Captain Doug, Do what you have to do....But know this.....myself and thousands of others who come...visit ....I believe this......... we will all be here hoping you decide and come back....sometimes a break is just whats needed....personal issues family issues must come first....Understand....!!!!!!!!!

you know you have REAL friends here!!!!!!!!!!!!
didn't you tell me, just last week...

Friendship has no Quota?????????????????????????
I do not claim to know anything...except to make clear...we here "Got your back"...got It????

I for one, hope and pray....that your personal issue's will work out and that they are truely whats important....take all the time you need....but don't write your people off.....and ya know...if it is that you do stop here...look back on the last couple of years of your blog....Quite a story.....one to be proud of!!!!!!!!! Speaking for my loud mouth ASS.....I am Prouder than hell to know you!!!!!!!!

getjets said...


Cedarglen said...

Doug: I am sorry to hear the news, but it is not really a big surprise; we've seen this in the works for some time. I'm sure that we will do our vert best to behave and to keep YOUR space warm. I hope someone flips the page every few days. Otherwise, Sincere Best Wishes and come back when/if you can. Cedarglen out, but monitoring COM1. -Craig
(P.S. Sorry that I've been so long winded!)

carlton said...

We wish you all the best, and hope to hear from you again soon.

Cheers, Carlton.

Bas said...

Hey Captain Doug,

Sorry to hear all that, take care and first things first. We'll still be here, no worries!

All the best.

Bas from 'cross the pond.

Dave W said...


Im sure a break is well overdue - I hope your issues are not serious but either way our best wishes go with you....

Remember, if you make it across the pond the English Wing of the CDAS (Capt. Doug Appreciation Society) has an open invitation! LOL!!

There are too many wonderful contributors to your blog to name individually but given both our common and diverse interests I'm sure we'll get along just fine - where did you leave the emergency pizza money by the way?? :)

Regards and best wishes, as always, to all

Dave from the UK

K1MGY said...

Doug, love your writing, photos, and the mix of tourism, flight deck technicals, and the occasional chronicles of Doug the Builder.

Note to my Congressperson (and I will don my "p'd off" cap): I listened to the Kennedy Ground post on your home page. Appalled. And somewhat concerned as a passenger.

Although the level of traffic, complexity of the field, and mix of dialects lends to confusion, what makes it worse is a controller who misses read backs (I counted three), forgets the instructions he issued, and then arrogantly berates others for his own failings. NY cab driver mentality should be wiped from the tower.

The FAA is equally responsible. Rather than sit back and only respond with the usual blue lights and bravado when metal twists, they should instead be aware - in real time - that situations such as this are occurring and send help. Overload, overwork, a confusing jumble of a system, a communications method one step above semaphore, and failure to properly use technology (where is the fancy and expensive ground radar??) is an indictable combo. The next blunder could be fatal.

Has the FAA not heard of the phrase "you're fired"? Or, more like it, they should be at the other end of the phrase themselves.

Craig R said...

Captain Doug,

I'm amazed at how much time you give to this great blog, so I'm not surprised a break is overdue. I do enjoy reading it, so thank you.

And yup, work has me on the road more than ever. Don't be surprised if, one day, the in-charge pays you a visit mid-flight with a six pack from some guy in the back.


Christer said...

Thanks Captain Doug for all your posts and comments- I have to echo what others have already said- you're much appreciated. Take as much time off as you need. You've sure built an interesting and colorful community here, and while we enjoy your frequent updates and comments, I'd hate to see you get in any trouble because of the time you spend here. Here's to a well-deserved break!

Craig (of Cedarglen)- thanks for your complements, I'm glad you're enjoying some of my stuff! If I'm ever in your neck of the woods I'd look forward to putting a face to the name.

Thanks again Doug, and enjoy your break as best you can!

Captain Doug said...

Cedarglen. Thank you sir! I'm hoping it won't be a long time. Doug

Captain Doug said...

Carlton. You are a gentleman! Doug

Captain Doug said...

Bas. Chase your dreams! But I know you will. Captain D :)))

Captain Doug said...

Dave W.

Even though I still label you as a newcomer you added a great dimension to my blog.

LOL about the pizza money. You see....you have great tact.

Captain Doug

Captain Doug said...

K1MGY. You've made some great points. And I thank you for the kind words.

I wish I could write more but my head is elsewhere.

But thanks for saying hello!

Captain Doug soon to be on break. :)))

Captain Doug said...

Craig R. If you are on my flight you better come up and say hello!

Until then...all the best!

Captain Doug

Captain Doug said...

Thanks Christer. I'm certain our paths will cross again...

All the best with your family, profession and flying!

Captain Doug

Captain Doug said...

Miss TWA. >>>

That's all I have to say...you know the rest.