This video is a year of corporate flying in 5 minutes. It’s mostly takeoffs, landings and approaches or what I like to call the fun part of the job. I enjoy what I do and like to share that experience in my videos. In actuality, over a years’ time, I’ve flown many more flights and in more airplanes than are shown in the video. So this video is more of an attempt to give you the feel of flying as a charter pilot than a day by day account. Unfortunately, I don’t always have the chance to pull out my camera and capture what would have made great video so some of the coolest things I’ve seen I didn’t get in the video. The aircraft in the video are the Cessna Citation Mustang, Citation Encore, Citation II, Citation Excel and a Beechcraft King Air 350. Some of the video is taken while acting as the pilot or co-pilot. A few of the included scenes are of the aircraft cockpits and the cabin. The name of the music is “Full Throttle”
A Beechcraft King Air 350 takeoff on runway 25 at Eagle County Regional Airport (EGE), Colorado. Also known as the Eagle/Vail airport it’s ranked number eight on the History Channel’s show Most Extreme Airports. The factors that placed Eagle on this list are a higher elevation of 6,540 feet, steeply rising mountainous terrain on all sides, downhill sloping runway, unpredictable weather and challenging approach and departure procedures. All of these factors make Eagle a very challenging airport for both experienced and novice aviators. On a cold clear day Eagle is a joy to fly into, the sweeping mountain vistas are breathtaking. Unfortunately, add a little weather or loose an engine on a hot day and this airport is suddenly not the fun lunch stop you planned on. Due to the mountains the approaches have what at first seem like fairly high minimums of 3 miles and 1,790 feet. But don’t forget if a snow squall suddenly blooms over the mountain, the runway can disappear in an instant. Ask yourself what if I lose an engine after doing a missed approach or on the departure procedure. Can my aircraft maintain the required 13% climb gradient required to climb to a safe altitude. Mountain flying can be greatly rewarding, just be sure you check your aircraft’s single engine climb performance or get some instruction in mountain flying before flying into your first mountain airport.
One of the best places in the world to watch planes land is on the island of St. Martin in the Caribbean. St. Martin is a 35 square mile area island with mountains in the center and beautiful white sand beaches at the water’s edge. The northern half of the island is owned by France and called Saint Martin. The south side is part of the kingdom of the Netherlands. The Dutch call it Sint Maarten. This beautiful island is served by Princess Juliana International Airport (SXM) on the Dutch side. Princess Juliana is without a doubt the best place in the world to watch airplanes land and the best place to set up for fantastic pictures of the world’s largest airliners landing is the sunset Beach Bar and Grill on Maho Beach.
Boeing 747’s and the Airbus 380 cross Maho Beach at approximately 50 feet over sunbathers and swimmers for some fantastic aviation photo opportunities. The landing runway, runway 10, is only 7,150 feet long and the touchdown area is only a short distance from the ocean waves. On the departure end of the runway is Pic Paradis, a 1,390 feet high mountain that departing aircraft must avoid with a sharp right turn after takeoff. Water on one end and mountains on the other end of this short runway is what places Princess Juliana airport on the list of the world’s most dangerous or extreme airports. Pictures and video from this spot often surprise viewers with how close people are to these flying behemoths crossing the beach. These pictures are recognizable across the world. The other shocking images are of tourist and sunbathers hanging on the airport fence just behind departing jets as pilots hold the brakes and throttle up the engines for the short run down the runway. Tourists hold on for dear life while being pounded by hot blast from jet engines. With the larger airliners this can or will lift them off the ground as they cling to the fence. Unfortunately this can be a very dangerous sport. A few misfortunate fence riders have been severely injured by jet blast. If you make it to St. Martin make sure you spend some time on Maho Beach and don’t forget your camera.
US Airways Boeing 757 landing St martin
Video of a Cessna Citation Encore CE-560 takeoff, cruise and landing at Arlington Airport (GKY). On this flight the copilot is the flying pilot. Arlington is about 10 miles south of the DFW airport. Due to its close proximity to DFW, Air Traffic Control requires arriving private jets to descend below the arrival and departure gates of DFW, and then are vectored around DFW to the east. This routing takes arriving aircraft right over the Dallas love airport at a relatively low altitude. In the video the citation flies over Dallas love then turns to the west. At this point the crew gets a Traffic Alert from the TCAS(Terminal Collision Avoidance System) but pass well to the side of the VFR traffic. They then descend and after crossing over the Grand Prairie Airport are cleared for the visual approach to runway 16 and land. Getting into theses smaller general aviation airports where your passengers are closer to their destination is one of the huge advantages to having access to a business jet.
A Friend of mine takes a ride in a very nice North American T-6 Texan. The Texan was used by the US Army Air Force as an advanced trainer during the second world war. It was built by North American Aviation and powered by a 600 hp Pratt and Whitney R-1340 radial engine. Its normal cruise speed is 145 mph.
A Citation II flight from St Louis to Dallas Love. This video includes cockpit and cabin views. The Cessna Citation II or Citation 550 was designed as a Stretched version of the Citation one configured for 8-10 passengers. It first flew in 1977 and competed with the turboprop market as a step up entry level jet. When production had ceased Cessna had built 603 CE-550’s. It’s powered by two Pratt and Whitney JT15D-4 turbofan engines that generate 2,500 lbs of thrust each. It cruises at 360 kts and has a range of 1,200nm.
A Citation 550 departs Spirit of St. Louis airport and Lands at Dallas Love.
A Cessna Citation Encore CE-560 departs the Nashville airport. This video has ATC radio communications.
The Cockpit view from a Cessna Citation 550 corporate jet as we fly around weather. We use weather radar and a GNS 530 with XM Satellite and WX Weather Service to avoid the cells. This combination is the best way to go. I like to think of the Garmin as my strategic display for weather planning and the weather radar as my tactical display for maneuvering around cells. At our destination we have to fly around some cells and get into a little rain just before landing.
Cockpit view of a Beechcraft King Air 350 departing Tri-Cities Regional Airport on a stormy day.