Wednesday, July 31, 2013

To the guy in 9A...thanks

Last two day trip for a while.

Day one is a 3 leg day worth just 2.5 hours. I debated dropping it as it's not much flying, but I think about the $100 I would be I kept the flying.

Same cabin crew as the last two times, different Captain.

Right away this guy struck me as odd.

The first flight was a quick  50 minutes and is way over blocked.

"Hey let's make an extra 20 minutes on this first turn." My captain said to me while finishing up preflight duties.

"It's over blocked, not really possible." I replied.

"Ah I flew around yesterday at Mach .62 and no one said anything to me." he said.

Most of my flights are planned by the dispatcher at Mach.72-Mach .76. I fly planned or better depending on fuel load, weather, schedule integrity and if it's the go home/hotel leg. Flying slower to make a few bucks is of no interest to me.

His leg. Sure enough he climbed at a slower than normal 200 knots to 10,000 feet then 250 knots to 17,000 feet which was our final. Normal is to climb at 250 knots to 10,000 feet and a planned 300 knots at 17,000 feet.

The slow flying added a whole 8 minutes block to block. Eight minutes at my pay rate is about $5.60. For my Captain it was about $14. I planned on flying planned speed back and if he chose to fly slower on the longer legs I would ask him to fly planned and, if he refused for any reason other than his pocket book, request to meet with myself and the Chief Pilot.

While loading up with passengers for the return flight I heard my Flight Attendant yell, "Please stop! Stop! Stop! Stop or you're going to break it!"

I turned around and saw the overhead bin and passenger ceiling hanging down at row 9, the passenger in 9A broke it while trying to stuff his bag into the bin and close it.

A broken overhead bin is a big deal, but if the bin is empty we can quickly secure it,  write it up, depart and have it repaired later. The problem was his bag was wedged inside with the door halfway closed.

My Captain and I tried to gently...but with the door. Nothing.

My Flight Attendant made the announcement no one wanted to hear, "Ladies and Gentlemen please gather your things and exit the aircraft, we will now need a mechanic to fix the overhead bin."

The bad news was the airport mechanic had gone home. The closest company mechanic was over an hour away.

With the passengers off,  my Captain and I tried again to get the bag out. We finally got the bag out, but the damage was done. The door was off track and pieces had fallen off with the initial force from the passenger.

Two and a half hours later the mechanic arrived. He spent over an hour trying to fix the door in a way that it would be secured. Done.

Four hours after arriving, we left the gate. Of the original 43 passengers, just 13 were left. The rest were all connecting at the hub and had missed all possible flights for the night. My airline paid for hotels for them locally and booked them on the morning flights.

Being so late we missed our overnight flight and thus would all be going home for the night.

I know I'm late when I hear UPS and FEDEX flights on frequency as it seems they mostly fly at night.

Even at 10:30 PM there was a lot of traffic that caused me to be assigned a speed of 280 knots.

Landed at 11PM and blocked in at 11:08PM.

Scheduling WANTED to have me back at the airport at 8:05AM to catch up with my 8:50AM departure. That wasn't good enough for me.

My hub is big....huge. Even if I rushed I wouldn't reach my car until 11:35 PM and would be home at maybe midnight. If I magically fell asleep right away I would still have to get up at 6:30AM to leave at 7AM to drive back to the airport, park, ride the airport train, clear security and be at the gate by 8:05AM. That's maybe  6 hours sleep, more likely 5 hours sleep.

"I need 8 hours of real rest to safely fly tomorrow. Do what you need to do but I can not fly safely without 8 hours of actual rest." I stated to the scheduling rep.

A scheduling supervisor came on the line and said there was nothing in my contract stating more than 8 hours rest in base and that the 8:05AM show time was legal. I stated while it's legal, I don't deem it safe and restated my need for 8 hours of real rest. We went back and forth and finally he took me off the first turn. My new showtime was 11:45AM.

I hate having to fight for rest. After I hung up I searched the contract as I thought I could get 10 hours. Finally I found it and called back but the supervisor was "busy".

I am pay protected for the flying I was removed from.

Today I just have one long turn left. I'm then off till Monday for my last trip before my vacation...headed to Bermuda for a week.

The broken bin is going to cost my airline several thousand dollars as they had to pay for the mechanic to drive 90 miles (his time + mileage), a hotel for him after he was done, hotels for all the passengers, rebooking for all the passengers, a reserve crew to fly my overnight flight, the use of a spare airplane for the overnight flight, and still paying my crew for the overnight flight as it's in the contract.

There is also the toll on all the other passengers as they had vacations booked, hotels arranged, rental car arranged and of course the emotional toll.

It was an accident, but common sense should have taken over when the door wouldn't close with normal pressure.

Friday, July 26, 2013

I'm a pilot....not an actor

I fly the same no matter whom is on the flight deck with me. I find it easier to fly the right way all the time than put on a show while being watched.

There are some things I will abbrevite when I'm flying with a Captain for more than one day. Like what you ponder? Mostly briefings. Here is my "standard" takeoff briefing.

"This will be a right seat departure from runway 22L. It will be the normal taxi route via Golf and Bravo. No hotspots. My standard briefing goes as follows, we will be using s standard power takeoff, engine powering the packs and the APU will be shutoff. We will abort for anything up to 80 knots. After that only for engine fire, failure or if the plane is incapable of flight. Otherwise we will take it into the air and work the problem out there. The weather is VFR so we can return to runway 22L or 22R. If everything goes well, acceleration altitude is 1800 feet, first fix on the RNAV SID is MONEY and the initial altitude is 10,000 feet. Min takeoff fuel is 8000 pounds. There is no alternate and no MELs affecting the performance of flight. "

For the remaining briefings I will simply state "This will be a right seat departure from 22L. Standard. First fix Money. Min takeoff is 8000 pounds."

For landing it's a similar routine.

"This will be a visual approach to runway 22L. I will back it up with the ILS. Frequency is 111.9. Inbound course 221. There is a VASI on the left hand side. The runway is 8000 feet long. Performance charts state we need 3900 feet to stop. I plan on exiting the Hotel 3 high speed on the left. In the event of a go around lets plan on 3000 feet and straight ahead unless tower states otherwise. Once clearing lets keep ours heads up as we will have to hold short runway 28."

All subsequent landings will have a full briefing as my airline doesn't allow me to shorten it.

That being said my 2 day trip was long. Delays. My aircraft fleet is getting older. Older planes have more maintenance issues.

Same 3 and 5 trip from last week. Day 2 is 5 legs and 7 hours 55 minutes of scheduled flying. The last turn is the longest at 5 hours.

The first three legs were normal. My leg up on the 4th leg. An FAA Inspector was going to be joining us on the flight deck, he was just trying to get home. Cabin was full of paying passengers.

My Captain is a nice guy but he changed his tone completely with the FAA guy on the jump seat and began throwing me off by second guessing my decisions and calculations.

Beautiful VFR day. Nice long flight up. We all chit chatted while in cruise. I picked up the airport 20 miles out and we were cleared for the visual. Nearby terrain and the heat of the day caused a bumpy descent.

I've never been one to "hot rod" it so I slowed early and was at 160 knots in landing configuration 2000 AGL. My VREF speed was 130 knots while my V-Approach speed was 140 knots. At 1000 AGL I was down to 145 knots on average. I say average as the winds and thermals were causing speed fluctuations of +/- 5 knots.

Our company regs state a stabilized approach is one that has :

-small corrections in airspeed

-normal rate of descent no more than 300 fpm off target

-only minor variations from lateral and vertical path

Somewhat grey, but common sense states that if I was 20 knots fast and descending at 1400 feet per minute under 1000  feet.....that's not stabilized.

On this approach I had clear skies, a dry runway  8700 foot long runway. The charts stated I needed 4100 feet of runway to stop.

At 500 feet I was bouncing between 145 knots and 150 knot due to the winds and thermals. I was on glidepath and lined up with the runway.

At 200 feet I was at a solid 150 knots. At this point I started to idle the engines as I saw my trend vector increasing. The plane wouldn't slow down.

Shortly after my Captain said, "Watch your speed your at 150 knots!"

"I know I have the engines idled." I replied.

"You gotta slow it down." he replied.

"I know, the engines are idled, it will be fine."

Around 100 feet the speed had bled off to just over 140 knots and I added a bit of thrust as I saw the trend vector dropping. Sure enough the speed dropped down to 130 knots and would have continued dropping if I had not added power.

"Watch your speed you getting slow." stated my Captain.

I didn't reply. With the quick addition of power I was able to set the mains down just past the 1000 foot markers. Normal braking and I transferred controls and we turned off the runway with over 4000 feet remaining.

Quick turn.

Long flight back. During his approach he was also a bit fast.

"Damn thing won't slow down." my Captain said.

"See you thought I was messing up, but for whatever reason this plane is slick." I replied.

"Well I don't have an FAA inspector on the seat." he replied.

Done for a few days.

I have 18 more hours of flying this month. So far I've had no cancellations or reassignments...which is rare. If all goes as planned I will have my highest hour month of flying ever at 90 hours. I will get paid for 92 hours as I had a deadhead trip at the start of the month.

Next month I have two weeks of vacation. One week will be spent aboard a cruise ship, the other at home.



Tuesday, July 23, 2013

Flying around mountains

For the most part, every approach I perform is to an airport surrounded by mostly flat land. Every now and then I get to fly around mountains.

Recently I had a trip to and from Colorado.

I'd been to the airport just once before. That time it was my Captains leg. This time it was my leg.

It was a VFR day. The airport elevation is 4858 feet MSL.

The airport was VFR but the the arrival was covered in towering cumulonimbus clouds.


Arriving from the east, ATC vectored us south of the Grand Mesa which peaks at 10920 feet MSL. Once a bit west of Grand Mesa we were cleared to 11000 feet. I picked up the airport and we were cleared for the visual.

I remembered how hard my Captain had to work to get in. I like it easy so I slowed early and began configuring for landing.

Descending through 9000 feet the aircraft was in final landing configuration and I was headed toward the runway.

Due to terrain there is no straight in approach to runway 29. I loaded up the GPS/RNAV approach as a backup to the visual. Being a warm and windy day, the ride was not exactly smooth. A few updrafts and chop as the winds rolled off the terrain.

Right before the approach end of the runway is a fairly deep drop off and a few hills on each side. On the last approach my Captain knew this and prepared by adding a few knots as he lost speed on short final...almost like wind shear.

I briefed and carried an extra 5 knots above V-Approach. V-Approach was set for 143 knots. V-Ref was 133 knots. I was at 148 knots at 500 feet. Sure enough about 200 feet AGL we hit a wind shift causing the nose to rise and airspeed to drop. The speed trend vector quickly went down and the airspeed dropped to 137 knots.

A few flicks of the wrist and the main wheels reunited with the pavement.

Being a fairly high airport and a hot day, the takeoff performance wasn't so great. We were initially weight restricted and would have to leave behind 2 passengers. We looked at the numbers and used the headwind to help increase the climb limit weight enough to get them on.

For each takeoff we have to look at various performance figures. Two of the figures are runway limit and climb limit.

The runway limit weight is set so the aircraft can accelerate to V1, abort and stop safely on the remaining runway surface.

The climb limit weight is set so the aircraft can accelerate to V1, pop an engine, takeoff and clear all terrain while climbing out.

Engineers look at each runway and surrounding terrain to come up with these numbers. They also assign headwind credits and tailwind penalties to the numbers.

Working the numbers isn't hard, just takes time.

The takeoff was uneventful. My Captain briefed the takeoff including which way we would go if we lost an engine.

I've flown to a few airports in Colorado. The most difficult by far was Gunnison as the airport sits at a lofty 7680 MSL. The airport is so high that on high pressure days the pressure altitude could go over 8000 feet. For days when the pressure altitude was over 8000 , there was a restriction in place that I had to wear an oxygen mask for takeoff and landing. Additionally the airport was a "Captains" only airport meaning only Captain could perform the takeoff and landing. When it was my leg we would exchange control of the aircraft prior to arriving or departing. A little odd.....but that was the rule.

Thursday, July 18, 2013

This is an odd way to start an approach

Done for the week. I had two 2 day back to back trips worth 21 hours total.

The first two day was painless, I paid for it on the second trip.

The second trip was a 3 and 3. Pretty easy in theory.

I took the first leg, very short hop to a college town. Well normally it's easy. Lots of weather around.

Level at 17,000 feet my Captain got the ATIS. I saw on his face it wasn't good.

Heavy rain, thunderstorm in the vicinity, winds were 120@12 gusting 20, 800 overcast and a mile and a half visibility.

The only approach was a GPS. Fine with me.

I briefed the approach then we descended toward the airport. Once on with approach things got odd.

Us: "Good afternoon Flight 5620 level at 4000 with Bravo requesting the RNAV 16"

Approach: "Flight 5620 in the event of a missed approach turn left heading 040 climb maintain 3000 and call me back on this frequency,"

I told my Captain that it was a little odd to get missed approach instructions before being cleared for an approach. He agreed.....then we realized why. Wall of water...right over the airport. It was an odd sight as the rain was just over the airport property. A half mile north, east and west were all beautiful.

I stated I would shoot the approach as the storm was moving north/northwest and maybe it would move out in time.

Once on with tower it got worse.

Tower: "Flight 5620 cleared to land runway 16, be advised heavy rain just started on the field, winds 120@15"

On a two mile final I saw nothing. The missed approach point was the end of the runway.

"This isn't going to work, going missed." I told my Captain.

With that I pushed the thrust levers up and began a left banked turn.

Approach wasn't surprised to hear us. We had plenty of fuel on board, enough to hold for over an hour...or simply make the 120 mile flight back to base.

We were given vectors that formed a big box. Just five minutes later the field was VFR.

Back on an approach we thought we were good to go. Nah, there was a Cessna 172 that was VFR only waiting out the weather. Tower put him in front of us.

I began slowing to approach speed. Thankfully a non event.

Once on the ground we saw 4 other regional jets from another airline waiting on the ramp. They had all diverted.

We unloaded and were given an hour ground stop due to weather.

Lucky for our passengers we had just started. Unlucky for one of the other of the First Officers timed out (max duty day).

Quick flight back. We originally had a 10 hour overnight. With the more than an hour ground stop it was down to 8 hours 30 minutes.

By the time we got to the overnight we were tired. Since we had 7 hours 45 minutes of flying on day 2 we needed 9 hours of rest. Scheduling adjusted our "show" time in the morning to give us exactly 9 hours of "rest".

Of course the "rest" started 15 minutes after blocking in. During that time we were all still on the jet bridge as there were 5 passengers needing wheelchairs and the wheelchair service was slow.

I got about 6 hours of sleep. Not horrible.

Day 2 was 5 legs. The first 3 weren't too bad. The last two were long.

The last flight was to Rapid City, South Dakota. The airport is 6 miles southwest of a military airport.

I've been there a few times. This was my Captains first time.

We called the airport in sight while still 17 miles out and were cleared for the visual approach. Runway 14 was the active.

Captain: "Are you sure that's the airport and not the bigger one?"

Me: "Yep, the airport diagram shows all buildings on the west side of the airport the military base (the one he thought was the correct airport) has everything on the east side of the runway."

Captain:"Hmm, ok....still looking for the crossing runway to make sure."

Once closer he saw the narrow runway 5/23.  Unfortunately he was a tad high at this point. He had to really work it to get it down and still meet stabilized approach criteria. Done.

We blocked out 14 minutes early. For the leg back we asked, and were given, RADAR vectors to Mount Rushmore. It is just a few miles west of the airport.

Level at 10,000 feet everyone on the right side of the plane got a decent view of Mount Rushmore. Once done we were off to the hub.

Our FMS estimated arriving 40 minutes early. This was welcome news for everyone on board. Well weather happens.

Given a big turn for spacing. Then slowed. Finally cleared in and cleared to join the localizer for an ILS. I thought everything was golden.

"Approach clearance cancelled due to weather, turn left heading 060 and climb and maintain 4000." came streaming into my ears.

This wasn't a missed approach or a go around as we weren't on a published segment yet.

Given vectors for another runway and put in line.

Winds were 090@21G26. Landing runway 16.

I was dead on speed crossing the threshold. At 50 feet I began idling the engines. The thrust levers were idle by 30 feet....but the plane still wanted to fly as the gust kicked up and pushed us higher.

"Damn thing won't settle, engines are idled." I said.

"Gotta get'er down in the zone." said my Captain. I knew that and he knew I knew was just a crappy place to  be. About 3500 feet DOWN the runway (which is over 12000 feet long) the mains finally touched the runway. We were still 25 minutes early.

Well the final straw was the was closed. The airport authority closes the ramp when there is lightening close to the airport. All regular employees are forbidden from walking on the ramp.

This meant there was no one to park we thought.

We stopped short of the gate and made a PA. A few minutes later we saw two managers marshaling a plane in. Managers are allowed on the ramp even when the airport authority closes it. They were only parking the planes and chocking them so passengers could get off. All bags would stay on board. We were happy to see them.

We blocked in right on time. Done till Sunday.

I do have one more issue. My paper medical left my possession sometime this week. I have a temporary from my airline so I'm legal to fly. The issue is I can't leave the 48 states...and my next trip is an international overnight. I'm going to make sure I can't find it. If all else fails I can trade it to stay domestic, but I will likely be out a few hours.

Monday, July 15, 2013

Lowering the bar

I just don't get it. I think it's because I went to a small University versus somewhere like Harvard or Yale.

The regional airline industry was looking good for a bit. There was a lot of consolidation. Skywest bought up Expressjet and ASA (and has since combined the latter), Trans States bought up Compass, and Pinnacle got in bed with Colgan and Mesaba. Fewer players should have increased the pricing power. Should have.

Then Pinnacle (now Endeavor Air...but most know it as Pinnacle) went bankrupt. During the restructuring they got a crap sandwich of a contract. Really low pay and work rules. One thing I really don't care for is the pay when upgrading to Captain.

At most airlines pay is tied to years of service. For example in October I will be on year 7 pay (I will have been here 6 years). If I upgrade to Captain before October 2014 I will get year 7 Captain pay.

At Pinnacle a First Officer who upgrades to Captain will start at year 1 Captain pay. What's the difference?

My year 7 First Officer pay is about $42 an hour. Year 7 Captain pay is $76 an hour while year 1 Captain pay is $64 an hour. That $12 an hour is huge, amounting to over $15,000 a year when overtime, 401K and premium pay comes into play. Fifteen thousand dollars is a good used car!

With the really bad Pinnacle contract Delta has a new card in it's hand. Delta has the ability to "reset" pay to ALL other Delta regionals. Everyone gets the pressure to lower cost.

Next up is what's going on over at American Eagle.

They are in bankruptcy along with American Airlines. American Eagle was hit for cost cutting like every other part of AMR (parent company of American Airlines).

Now that American Airlines is merging with US Airways, the new President of US Airways Doug Parker wants MORE money for American Eagle. The reason? Deltas new card.

The new President wants American Eagle to implement a "B" scale. A "B" scale is essentially a lower pay rate for any new hire going forward. A "B" scale really hurts the industry and lowers the bar further.

Ironically a "B" scale was used in the 80s by Bob Crandall at American Airlines. Further Irony? Parker was in management at American Airlines under Bob Crandall at the time.

The "B" scale really hurt the mainline contracts when it was implemented. I remember reading about the whole process in the book "Hard Landing".

Regional airlines are already a "B" scale. My job flying a regional jet is much the same as flying a 737 or 777. I go from point A to point B safely. Pay should not be tied to home many passengers are in the back. We are all professionals.

I hope American Eagle doesn't vote in the "B" scale. There is a carrot that , if they vote it in, they will get new, larger regional jets. If they vote it out the jets will go to another airline.

Oh and click on an ad or buy that book from the link as it helps pay for this site....I am a regional pilot after all ;-) .


Monday, July 8, 2013

My $0.02

At my overnight for my only 2 day trip of the week.

My weekend was spent reading news sites and watching the news about Asiana 214.

I don't work for the NTSB.....or the FAA...and have never flown a 777, so I won't speculate on the cause.

One thing that has annoyed me is the topic of the "inexperience" of the pilot and that this was a "training" flight.

From my understanding the First Officer had over 10,000 of flight time. He came off the 747 which he had landed before at SFO.

The public has no concept of flight time, all they hear is "training" and assume he is inexperienced. Here's something most readers of this blog know, everyday pilots sit in a plane for the first time and fly passengers around.

When I was hired by my airline I was trained in a FAA approved simulator and then tested in the same simulator before I ever touched the real plane. My first flight in the real plane was in December 2007 in moderate snow...with paying passengers in the back. The Captain was an IOE (Initial Operating Experience) Captain specially trained to fly with new pilots. I was signed off in about 34 hours and maybe 10 landings. It's common. I think only small airlines and aircraft without a simulator use the real plane (empty) for training.

Two years ago when I transitioned to my current aircraft, again I was put into a simulator. When I passed my FAA checkride I was then allowed to fly real passengers. I was again paired with an IOE Captain until he felt I was capable to hit the line. In that case it was one trip, about 20 hours and maybe 6 landings.

I get really annoyed watching "Aviation Experts" on TV...especially ones who claim to be pilots.

That's all for now....gonna step off the soap box.

Friday, July 5, 2013


Flew 23 hours in 4 days. Two 2 day back to backs.

The first two day trip was easier than the first.

I had a 7PM report time. Boarded up on time and things were looking good.....until a ramper reported the lav wouldn't drain from the outside. This is normally due to a passenger flushing something they shouldn't be flushing. With a 2 1/2 hour flight ahead we needed a lav. Plane swap.

We blocked out almost 2 hours late. My leg. Long flight. I joke that "Same Day Service is Guaranteed". Well we were supposed to arrive at 11:30PM. Instead we blocked in at 1:02AM. Late and tired.

We got to the hotel at 1:35AM. Van time was set for 11:15 AM.

Fell asleep around 2:10AM. Woke up at 8:45AM so I could rush downstairs before breakfast was over.

Tired. Waffle made and coffee poured I headed back to my room.

Day 2 was a 5 leg day.

Loaded up in the van at 11:10AM with my Captain. No Flight attendant. Waiting. He finally arrived at 11:20AM. We were annoyed. Van time is "but in van time" not "leave your room time."

It was just 5 minutes, but it can cause all of us to have to rush.

Lucky for us the in bound was deplaning as we arrived at the gate.

Blocked out 2 minutes early and arrived 5 minutes late, but still on time in the eye  of the Department of Transportation.

Plane swap. Inbound late causing us to block out 15 minutes late while blocking in just 6 minutes late. We had a very good ground crew and did a fast 22 minute turn blocking out 2 minutes early. I still find it funny how much I can get done without feeling rushed.

That 22 minutes included all the inbound passengers getting off, my post flight, using the restroom, chatting with the gate crew, setting up the flight deck, loading up the outbound passengers and pushing out.

Arrived 3 minutes have another plane swap.

Once again the inbound caused us to blocked out 8 minutes late.  I flew fast, but still arrived 2 minutes late.

We were supposed to have an abnormal 45 minute sit before returning to base.


With one passenger returning we hoped to leave early. Then 4 passengers from another airline arrived as their flight had cancelled. We could have left 25 minutes early with one passenger, but we left 7 minutes early as we had to wait for checked bags to be passed between airlines.

Captains leg. Flew very fast arriving 20 minutes early at 8:45PM.

I walked in my back door at 9:50PM.

Up at 6:30AM the next day to the sounds of my daughter calling me.

After a nice breakfast of waffles and chocolate milk we enjoyed an episode of Mickey Mouse Clubhouse before I dropped her off at daycare.

I then returned home for some more honey do items. Moving into a new house is way more work than I thought it would be. I don't remember being this busy with our first house.

I had a 1:35PM sign in for the next trip.

Three legs on day one. I took the first. Left early and arrived early. The controller at the out station seemed overly cautious as we were vectored for a 20 mile final.....with 10 miles between us and the next RJ. Eh.

After arriving back in base we were to have just 35 minutes before the final flight. Supposed to.

Plane swap...and the inbound was running late. We blocked out 48 minutes late. Long line for takeoff. No amount of flying at "hotel leg"speed would help. We blocked in 47 minutes late.

Our 9 hours 45 minute overnight was supposed to be under 9 hours. Scheduling reduced our show time for the morning to give us exactly 9 hours.

Hotel van was late. It arrived at 10:30PM. I walked into my hotel room at 10:50PM. Van time was 7AM.

Groggy. First two legs were mine and were easy. We did have a 2 hour sit at an outstation before the third leg.

The short overnight was really hitting me hard. I ate lunch and had a big soft drink. Still dragging.

I got something I rarely get....a Starbucks frappuccino. Helped a little.

Last flight of the day for me was to DCA.

I haven't been to DCA in over two years.

Going to DCA is stressful.

We were assigned the Trups2 arrival. The arrival has a lot of step down fixes. It was busy as we were told to "descend via" meaning altitude was our discretion as long as we met the restrictions. We went from FL370 to 13000 feet....all on our own.

LDA 19 approach in use. We picked up the Potomac early. It was nice to have a backup to the LDA. I'd flown the River Visual 19 before.

My Captain made a beautiful approach and landing. It's easy to screw up the approach as you have to swing out while under 800 feet AGL to align with the runway.

I then had a 2 hour sit before deadheading home. The rest of my crew continued on as they were on a 4 day trip.

Two hours later I was sitting in a First Class seat headed home.

I'm off till Tuesday for another 2 day...then off for 5 more days.

Sorry for the lack of post....been busy flyin'.