May 15-09

Past-E-Mail: Cam Notes - 2009: May: May 15-09
Contrail    ...scroll down to share comments
Photo by Bob Gilreath
Above Pasty Central    ...scroll down to share comments
Photo by Bob Gilreath
Skirting the Keweenaw    ...scroll down to share comments
Photo by Bob Gilreath

Mary Drew at Pasty Central (Mdrew) on Friday, May 15, 2009 - 06:16 am:

Recently I received two maps, from Ray Laakaniemi, along with a note explaining what they were all about. My immediate reaction was to search for a photo (which I found in Bob Gilreath's gallery album) to compliment those maps, and give you a visual for Ray's note here below:

"Do you ever look into the sky and see the vapor trails that the big jets leave and wonder where those jets are going? This is partially solved with these two pictures, taken aboard a Boeing 767 (capacity 241 people) as it leaves Minneapolis. The flight path, as you can see, goes right along the western shore of the Keweenaw, then to the southern tip of Hudson's Bay, on to Labrador, south of Iceland, over the border between Ireland and Northern Ireland and on to Paris, 4400 miles in all. Ray and Karen Laakaniemi recently took that trip, then went on to Crete to visit their son, a Navy flight surgeon who is getting out in two weeks. The vapor trails are caused when the exhaust from 200-ton jet, going 500 mph at 35,000 feet, crystallizes into the air, which is minus 55 or minus 60 at that altitude. Pilots say the vapor trail can be as wide as the wing span of the jet, in this case 146 feet, or even wider, but it looks so small when we see it from the ground five miles below."
Thanks for the roving report and maps, Ray. Thanks also to Bob for having a "contrail" photo handy, too. Congratulations and a BIG thank you to Ray and Karen's son, (Brian) as he completes his service time in the Navy and returns to civilian life.
Karen and Brian in 2005

Capt. Paul (Eclogite) on Friday, May 15, 2009 - 07:29 am:

I found it interesting that last summer, when Nat and I were flying back from London, our plane flew over such points as the southern tip of Greenland (which I'm told is quite rare to see), Labrador, the Soo Locks, and the western side of the lower peninsula. We were high enough to be able to see the east side of the Keweenaw as well.

A funny story about that flight; we were flying along (literally) and after we left Scotland it clouded up over the North Atlantic so not much to see. Every now and then I'd take a peek out the window to see more clouds. A few hours into the flight I took a quick peek out the window and saw the clouds broke a little. As I was looking I something white down below. "Hey look, that's an iceberg!" I told Nat. We started seeing m ore and more until I looked again and told Nat "Holy %$#@, that's Greenland!!". I quick grabbed the camera and starting shooting pictures and actually got some incredible shots of the fjords and glaciers near Ikeq and Nanortalik.....

By Serena Sturm (Serena) on Friday, May 15, 2009 - 07:39 am:

TGIF!! Very interesting.

By BJmilford (Bjmilford) on Friday, May 15, 2009 - 07:39 am:

Flights leaving Detroit on their way to Japan fly NW over Traverse City and the Keweenaw. As a kid, I always wondered where they were going.

By Janie T. (Bobbysgirl) on Friday, May 15, 2009 - 07:44 am:

Capt...sounds exactly like the same flight my brother had flying back from his honeymoon/ vacation in Scotland and Ireland.

By Sconie (Sconie) on Friday, May 15, 2009 - 07:59 am:

FWIW, the flight path from and to Minneapolis, as described by Ray Laakaniemi, is busily used because it is the main artery from the upper Midwest into all of the key, European, airports----London Heathrow, Schiphol at Amsterdam, Frankfurt in Germany---all, in addition to Paris-de Gaulle.

By Eddyfitz (Eddyfitz) on Friday, May 15, 2009 - 09:13 am:

While sunning on a bright weekend afternoon here in Monroe county you can see at times a dozen "con-trails" as the U.S.Air Force fly large B-52 from Lincoln, Neb up and over Newfoundland and Greenland to get in their flight time for each month.
I always have pointed out to our kids/ that this is our government up there protecting us from all the "bad guys".(as they roll their eyes)

By Alex "UP-Goldwinger" (Alex) on Friday, May 15, 2009 - 09:32 am:

Passenger jets are always flying around Metro Detroit at a very-very slow speed and it amazes me how those giants can even stay up at that slow velocity.

By Sharon I. Smith (Sharons) on Friday, May 15, 2009 - 10:20 am:

Every night since I've lived here, a jet has passed over the lake at just about 11:30 pm, and I can hear it from my bedroom. Lately there has also been an 11:00 pm fly-over. I don't know which direction they're going, but I assumed Keweenaw and western Lake Superior is on a great circle route, probably to Japan and parts east.

By Ray Laakaniemi (Rlaakan) on Friday, May 15, 2009 - 12:23 pm:

Just a small point of clarification. Our son's name is Brian and he starts a residency in ER in Baton Rouge this summer.

Mary says: Oops, sorry about that Ray (and Brian). I looked around further in your gallery album and saw the name Carter on a sign at his base, so I assumed that was his name. Lesson learned...never assume anything! :-> I've corrected it up above, also.

By kay Moore (Mskatie) on Friday, May 15, 2009 - 05:27 pm:

Being an avid sky watcher, especially sunrises and sunsets, I've always wondered about these sky vapors. Very interesting explanations. As I watch the sunsets here from my deck, overlooking the Mississippi, I wonder if the river is visable to the flyers looking down. I remember the only time I flew over the east coast on my way to Ireland back in 1980. I was awe-struck to see the shape of Cape Cod just exactly like on the maps!!!

By Cindy Pihlaja Russell (Gone2long) on Friday, May 15, 2009 - 11:10 pm:

Speaking of contrails and airplanes, I hear one taking off from our Lansing Regional International Airport...and on that note, I think I will hit the hay. Nekemiin (sp?)

By F.F. (Flipflop) on Saturday, May 16, 2009 - 01:04 am:

I wonder not where their going, but coming from. Increased traffic and certain weather conditions sends these overhead my way.. Sometimes a little too low and I can hear the engines gasp for more power when dropping out of the clouds.

talk to me Johnny

By Thomas Wachowski (Skibdr) on Saturday, May 16, 2009 - 12:31 pm:

Their is a great website for tracking aircraft flying over the
Keweenaw: Simply put CMX into the search
box on the left and you'll see a map and summary of all IFR aircraft
flying near the Keweenaw. You can see flight numbers of aircraft
overflying the Keweenaw and you can put those flight numbers (for
example: Northwest 123) into another search box and see the
aircraft's departure and destination airports!

By FRNash/PHX, AZ (Frnash) on Saturday, May 16, 2009 - 01:46 pm:

Cindy Pihlaja Russell (Gone2long):
"Nekemiin (sp?)"

Close: Näkemiin = "Bye"

F.F. (Flipflop):
"I wonder not where their going, but coming from."

It might help if we knew where you are; your profile doesn't provide much of a geographic clue.
Donald Kilpela (Commodore) on Saturday, May 16, 2009 - 03:00 pm:

In 1971, I was giving a speech in Winipeg, Canada, and then flew from Winipeg to Toronto to get home to Detroit where I lived. A week before the flight, I had purchased the Isle Royale Queen II and couldn't wait to get to the Copper Country to see her. During an otherwise uneventful flight, I was looking down trying to identify what was below when suddenly I realized I was over Isle Royale National Park. A good omen I thought but must tell you that I almost jumped out of the window with excitement. That contrail heading SSE over Lake Suoperior always reminds me of that wholly exciting time of my life.

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