A 10 minute repositioning flight in a Cessna Citation Encore from Flagstaff Arizona to the Sedona Airport (KSEZ). It’s a beautiful clear day but the winds are very gusty. The Sedona airport can be a very challenging airport to fly into. Field elevation is 4,827 ft., the runway is 5,132 ft in length and runway 3 has a 1.8% up hill gradient. Add to this high temperatures or unfavorable winds and normal takeoff distances can be dramatically increased. In some cases you may need to leave fuel behind or wait for more favorable conditions before departing. This airport sits on a mesa that rises 500 ft. above the town of Sedona and is surrounded by an other worldly landscape that has to be seen to be believed. The draw back to this incredible vista is that it’s composed mostly of rapidly rising terrain. When winds pickup from the southwest treacherous downdrafts can be expected northeast of the approach end of runway 21. Unfortunately, a series of fatal accidents have occurred over the years at this airport. But, with a little preparation this airport is worth flying into just for the experience of being there. Just make sure to check your aircraft performance charts before departing. Before you leave, stop by the Mesa Grill next to the runway, it has excellent food.