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Pilots pointing out landmarks below: Love it or hate it?

Pilots pointing out landmarks below: Love it or hate it?

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Old Jan 14, 10, 8:00 am
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Pilots pointing out landmarks below: Love it or hate it?

Do you like it or hate it when the pilot tells you the Grand Canyon is outside your window? I love finding out what I'm looking at when I fly. I'm a writer at the Chicago Tribune, and am writing a column about how people feel about pilots as tour guides. If you would like to add your thoughts to this column, please post to this thread or email me, either through this site or at [email protected].
Thanks and happy flying,
Barbara Brotman
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Old Jan 14, 10, 8:53 am
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Love it. From what I've read in the news, the Islamic panty bomber's failed attempt for yet another mass murder has led to TSA considering having the pilots NOT give out that information.
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Old Jan 14, 10, 9:31 am
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Add my vote as in favor of.
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Old Jan 14, 10, 9:47 am
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Even after being in a job that requires daily flying for 20-some years, I like hearing about sights from the cockpit. Some may complain that it wakes them up, but most planes these days are noisy with chattering folks and wailing kids. Americans tend to know little about geography, so it's helpful to announce on a Chicago-Dallas flight that "the big river you see below is the Mississippi" , or the flights Chicago-to-NY often feature nice views of islands in Lake Erie off Ohio (who knew?) or the narrow waterway leading to Lake Ontario near Buffalo where Niagra Falls is located. Flights crossing the mountains in Colorado where you see snow on peaks even when it's warm in Chicago could clue passeengers in that the "mountains below are about 12,000 feet high so still have snow, while we are flying at 32,000 feet."

Some pilots regularly give a preview of the route during their pre-takeoff announfements, such as:'"we'll be taking off to the south (from ORD), heading over Peoria, then across the Mississippi River, then across Missouri, etc."

On a couple of flight over the Grand Canyon on clear days, the pilots were kind enough to bank the plane a bit on each side so that passenegers on both sides could get a good look down at the Canyon. It pleased the kids of all ages for a few minutes.
These days, it's nice to hear from the cockpit every so often just to know that everything is proceeding normally.
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Old Jan 14, 10, 10:22 am
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Count me as a "pro."

Since I am a geography geek (I suspect most FTers are), I am always trying to find out what feature is below the plane. It was aeasy, for example, to spot the striking Lake Tahoe from the air, but I hate having to ask a flight attendant what something is, only to get a shrug in response. The last time an announcement was done on a flight I was on was almost a year ago when the meteor crater in Arizona was announced. I take a lot of flights at night so I do not get to enjoy that often.
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Old Jan 14, 10, 10:45 am
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Like it...

...saw the entire blown out top of the crater over Mt. St. Helens, a pod of about 150 dolphins swimming, a pod of killer whales , and the skydome open while the blue jays were playing....I'm all for it.
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Old Jan 14, 10, 10:49 am
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Since I am a geography geek (I suspect most FTers are), I am always trying to find out what feature is below the plane. It was aeasy, for example, to spot the striking Lake Tahoe from the air, but I hate having to ask a flight attendant what something is, only to get a shrug in response.
+1

I don't have that much flying under my belt, but I love trying to identify the geography from the air. It's nice when you spot something in the distance and a few minutes later, your identification is confirmed by a pilot annoucement.
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Old Jan 14, 10, 10:52 am
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I think it's great when they do that.
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Old Jan 14, 10, 11:01 am
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from me as well. Looks like we're unanimous so far.
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Old Jan 14, 10, 11:04 am
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Totally love it. Pilot on ABQ-MSP pointed out some NM features, including the continental divide, earlier this month.

It's great not just for Americans, but for tourists, who might fly over America rarely. This is such a vast and beautiful country, it's really wonderful for the pilots to share their knowledge with those on board. Pointing out views of cities and aurorae are great too!

Most memorable was when I flew SFO-SEA and saw Mt St Helens, which inspired me to climb it a decade later. Also memorable was a UA pilot who specially requested the Rainier departure so that passengers on the left side could see Mt Rainier, and passengers on the right could see Mt St Helens.
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Old Jan 14, 10, 11:07 am
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I think it is great.
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Old Jan 14, 10, 11:20 am
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It's not done very often but I don't mind when it does. I typically have an aisle seat and therefore can't see out the window most of the time, but that doesn't prevent me from wandering over to a door and taking peek out the teeny porthole.

One time when flying YYZ - SFO the pilot was good enough to point out an F18 practicing mid-air refueling with a KC135. That was cool.

On the recent *A MegaDo our pilot requested what he referred to as a "VIP approach" to OSL. This involved flying (relatively low) over OSL. Sadly it was cloudy that day so we could only catch glimpses when the clouds parted a bit, but the gesture was certainly aprpeciated.
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Old Jan 14, 10, 11:29 am
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Love it. There's a lot of great scenery out there and I always appreciate it when the pilots point things out.
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Old Jan 14, 10, 12:16 pm
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I love it too.

Even better - one sunny evening on an EDI-SYY flight the pilot took an unannounced detour, flying very low between the mountains of Gairloch and swooped round the Shiant Islands. The first comment we got from the cockpit was on final approach to SYY when the pilot said he was sorry for the delay but it was such a lovely evening that it seemed a shame to waste it.
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Old Jan 14, 10, 12:45 pm
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annudder vote for yes
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