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West Coast, Wet Coast, Some Fall Colours, Random Drug Screen

West Coast, Wet Coast, Some Fall Colours, Random Drug Screen

Old Dec 13, 09, 2:49 am
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West Coast, Wet Coast, Some Fall Colours, Random Drug Screen

Tour of Duty 6th October 2009 to 21st November 2009
Part I: 6th October to 18th October


Time to hit the road again after being home longer than desired. Got word of trips available from Dixon, CA to Coquitlam, BC. Company booked air ticket LGB to SMF and I got transport to LGB. I checked in and paid $30 for second checked bag. Of all the airlines currently operating out of LGB Jet Blue has the lowest fee for checking two bags. The checked bags weighed 47 and 44 pounds. I cleared security after a queue and there was no secondary screening but my briefcase was checked.

Jet Blue #262 LGB-SMF A-320 Seat 23F Cruising altitude 34,000 feet Estimated flying time 0:59, actual 0:56 Scheduled departure 09h05, actual
09h11 out of gate 2 Scheduled arrival 10h26, actual 10h20 into gate 25


Boarding was only via front ramp. Plane was not very full. Pushback was 6 minutes late followed by taxi/hold of 6 minutes then takeoff to northwest. I saw Compton, Interstate 710, 110, junction with Interstates 105 and 110 and downtown LA but the view was a bit hazy. Then I saw LAX and we flew over water and I saw Santa Monica. We made turn north and made landfall over Malibu at 0:08. I saw the San Fernando Valley then a turn a little more NW and I saw the Santa Clarita Valley, junction of Interstate 5 and California 14 and the Antelope Valley to the distance.

At 0:16 the F/A came through offering water or juice or coffee. I chose the bottled water. At 0:17 we flew over the south San Joaquin Valley and I saw Arvin and the seatbelt sign was off by that time. At 0:20 we were over Bakersfield and I saw California 58, 178 and Tehachapi and Lake Isabella to the distance. I felt that we reached cruise at 0:23 and I saw Porterville, CA and the Sierra Nevada. I got Blue Chips at 0:26. Later I saw Tulare and Visalia followed by part of Fresno including the airport and California 41 and 180.

I felt descent begin at 0:34 just north of Fresno. I saw the Sierra foothills and reservoirs. There were some bumps during first part of descent but seatbelt sign did not go on until 0:44. At 0:51 I saw California 99 near Galt. At 0:53 I saw Interstate 5 followed by downtown Sacramento and Interstate 80 on final. We landed south to north. Taxi was 3 minutes and we arrived 6 minutes early. I got my bags 11-12 minutes after arrival then got shuttle to Dixon.

Trip: Dixon, CA to Coquitlam, BC 885 paid miles Routes: Interstate 80 to California 113 to Interstate 5 to Washington 539 to Washington 546 to Washington 9 to British Columbia 11 to British Columbia 1 Maximum elevation: 4,310 feet at Siskiyou Summit on Interstate 5 4 miles north of the CA/OR state line. Permits required: OR fuel permit, WA and BC trip permits.
Highest USA diesel price: $2.849/gallon at Pilot Dunnigan, CA
Lowest USA diesel price: $2.489/gallon at Jubitz, Portland, OR
Diesel price in Canada: $0.909CAD/litre at Flying J Cardlock Abbotsford, BC


I picked up a hydro truck with automatic transmission. Weather was OK the entire trip. I did this run numerous times before. I did have some traffic jams and slowing in Seattle and Everett. I crossed the border then made delivery and got a taxi to YVR.

Upon arrival at YVR I checked in at USAirways and had to pay $56CAD to check 2 bags. Unfortunately I got stuck in middle seat for first flight. Then I cleared security with no extra screening. After that I precleared US Customs with a short queue but there was a longer queue to turn in the declaration form.

USAirways #342 YVR-PHX A-320 Seat 4E Cruising altitude 37,000 feet Estimated flying time 2:33, actual 2:26 Scheduled departure 14h29, actual
14h26 out of E87 Scheduled arrival 17h34, actual 17h16 into A11


Plane was full and I was stuck in middle seat but I had front row of coach. Announcement was it was clear and 27C at PHX. Pushback was 3 minutes early followed by taxi/hold of 16 minutes and takeoff to west. My view was limited but I saw Strait of Georgia and Vancouver Island and some of Vancouver metro on takeoff. We went through a thin layer of clouds at 0:03 and seatbelt sign went off at 0:08 while over the Strait of Juan de Fuca.

There was a drink run at about 0:20 and I got can of soda and we reached cruise at 0:25. I saw Mt. Hood at 0:28 then I tried to take a nap. At 1:54 announcement came the Grand Canyon could be seen from both sides. Seatbelt sign went on at 1:57 and I felt descent begin at 2:03. Descent was announced at 2:05. I saw Interstate 17 later on during descent and we landed east to west. Taxi was 6 minutes and we arrived at gate 18 minutes early.

USAirways #371 PHX-SMF A-320 Seat 18F Cruising altitude not given Estimated flying time 1:40, actual 1:30 Scheduled departure 20h10, actual
20h35 out of B24 Scheduled arrival 22h12, actual 22h25 into A4


Gate was changed from A28 to B24. Plane was mostly full. Pushback was 25 minutes late followed by taxi/hold of 15 minutes. Takeoff was to the west. I saw the lights of downtown Phoenix and the metro area and Interstates 17 and 10 then turn to northwest.

At 0:29 there was drink run and I got cup of soda. At 0:32 I saw the lights of Las Vegas and the metro area. I thought I felt descent begin at 1:10 and descent was announced at 1:17 and it was 61F at SMF. Seatbelt sign stayed on the entire flight. We landed north to south. Taxi was 4 minutes and we arrived at gate 13 minutes late. I got bags 17-22 minutes after arrival and got transport to a motel in Davis, CA and next morning I got transport to Dixon.

Trip: Dixon, CA to Coquitlam, BC 885 paid miles Routes: Interstate 80 to California 113 to Interstate 5 (with local streets in Portland, OR) to Washington 539 to Washington 546 to Washington 9 to British Columbia 11 to British Columbia 1 Maximum elevation: 4,310 feet at Siskiyou Summit on Interstate 5 4 miles north of the CA/OR state line Permits needed: OR fuel permit, WA and BC trip permits
Highest USA diesel price: $2.849/gallon at Pilot Dunnigan, CA
Lowest USA diesel price: $2.479/gallon at Jubitz Portland, OR
Diesel price in Canada: $0.909CAD/litre at Flying J Cardlock Abbotsford, BC


I made an after hours pickup on Saturday and got as far as Weed, CA Saturday night. On Sunday morning there was a possible glitch somewhere as the automatic transmission wanted to stay in neutral. So I finally got it in gear after shutting off and restarting the engine. As a result I was late to morning church at Country Baptist Church in Yreka, CA. The sermon was on Bitterness and Forgiveness. Sunday evening I attended service at Central Baptist in Sutherlin, OR. The message was on Compassion. I ended up spending the night in Springfield, OR.

Monday I got started and made a pit stop just north of Salem, OR or rather I WAS going to use the facilities but I returned a call as I received a message on my cell phone and found out that one of the other companies I contract with had my name come up for a random drug test. I told I was on a truck with another company and where I was going and I was given names and numbers of some clinics in Portland so I rang those clinics and settled on one I felt would result in the least deviation. I rang the other company back and informed them of my choice and proceeded to the clinic and without undue delay I provided a specimen and was back on the road. I spent the night in Everett, WA.

Tuesday was mostly dry with a few drops of rain near Bellingham. I learned that there was a major storm hitting California with rain in both northern and southern California. I saw some fall colours in Washington. I crossed the border and was questioned some by Customs about the episode where I was bounced at the border a few years ago. I got a little more rain in BC and made delivery then I got taxi to YVR.

I checked in at Alaska/Horizon and paid $42USD to check two bags. I cleared security with no additional screening except a look inside my briefcase. I precleared US Customs and had some spare time before boarding.

Horizon Air #2435 YVR-PDX Dash 8-Q400 Seat 18A Cruising altitude not given Estimated flying time not given, actual 1:01 Scheduled departure
18h25, actual 18h28 out of E96 Scheduled arrival 19h45, actual 19h44 into
A12L


We boarded via front stairs. Plane was not full at all with only 12 passengers out of something like 74 or 76 available seats. I was originally given seat 8E (window) but all passengers were told to sit in row 10 or higher for weight and balance reasons so I took seat 18A which was next to last row.

Pushback was 3 minutes late followed by taxi/hold of 10 minutes and takeoff to east. I saw downtown Vancouver immediately after takeoff then turn south and I saw Annacis Island and BC91 and 99. Then we went over water and soon scattered layers of clouds mostly blocked the view by 0:05.

At 0:07 the clouds broke and I saw some islands. There were some bumps during climb. At 0:08 the F/A gave Mama's Mellace's Cheddar Stix Mix and at 0:09 there was drink run and I got can of Vernors Ginger Ale. Alcoholic beverages were complimentary but I do not imbibe. At 0:22 the clouds broke enough I saw lights of Seattle, Interstate 5, bridges over Lake Washington but I did not see the skyscrapers.

We picked up some bumps just south of Seattle and I felt descent begin at 0:30. Approach was announced at 0:43 and there were bumps during descent. We made turns to west, south and east and made final approach over the Columbia River and I saw Interstate 5 and Vancouver, WA. We landed west to east followed by taxi of 5 minutes and we arrived at gate 1 minute early. I deplaned via rear stairs.

Horizon Air #2581 PDX-SMF CRJ-700 Seat 17E Cruising altitude 39,000 feet Estimated flying time 1:25, actual 1:11 Scheduled departure 20h55, actual 21h02 out of A11 Scheduled arrival 22h25, actual 22h31 I forgot to write down the arrival gate number.

We boarded via front stairs. It was not raining when I boarded. Plane was mostly but not totally full. Pushback was 7 minutes late followed by taxi/hold of 14 minutes. Takeoff was to east and I saw lights of downtown Portland immediately after takeoff followed by Interstate 205. Then we made turn south and we were in clouds at 0:03. Seatbelt sign went off at 0:20.

At 0:29 there was drink run and I got can of Vernors plus Mama Mellace's Cheddar Stix Mix. Announcement came at 0:47 that weather at SMF was mostly cloudy and 64F. Descent began at 0:49 and seatbelt sign went on at 0:50. At 0:56 the F/A came and offered a chocolate truffle. We picked up some bumps on approach.

We landed north to south on a wet runway. Taxi was 3 minutes and we arrived 6 minutes late and it was raining. I deplaned via jetway and got bags 14-15 minutes after arrival and got transport to Davis, CA for the night and next day got transport to Dixon.

Trip: Dixon, CA to Coquitlam, BC 885 paid miles Routes: Interstate 80 to California 113 to Interstate 5 to Washington 539 to Washington 546 to Washington 9 to British Columbia 11 to British Columbia 1 Maximum elevation: 4,310 feet at Siskiyou Summit on Interstate 5 4 miles north of the CA/OR state line Permits needed: OR fuel permit, WA and BC trip permits
Highest USA diesel price: $2.799/gallon at United Petroleum Dunnigan, CA
Lowest USA diesel price: $2.549/gallon at Jubitz Portland, OR
Diesel price in Canada: $0.914CAD/litre at Flying J Cardlock Abbotsford, BC


I made pickup and went to the Pilot in Dunnigan, CA to take on fuel but there was a queue at all pumps that did not appear to be moving. Eventually I got out and found out all the pumps were down due to power outage caused by the storm on the previous day. The store just reopened but I was told it may be 2 hours before fuel would be available so I went to United Petroleum on the other side of the Interstate where the pumps were working and I took on fuel.

There was rain from Lakehead to close to Mt. Shasta City and there was some hard rain and fog in places. The rain quit by the time I got to Black Butte Summit and I spent the night in Weed, CA. Next day was mostly clear during the day except for some fog patches after dark. I saw a little more fall colours and the colours were especially nice around Medford, OR. I spent the night in Tigard, OR.

Next day I saw more fall colours in Portland, OR and Vancouver, WA. Just north of La Center, WA rain started. There was a brief break from the rain then it started again and it poured at times and I saw lightning and heard thunder in Chehalis and Centralia, WA to south of Olympia. Then the rain let up but got real heavy from the north side of Seattle through Everett. I spent the night in Bellingham, WA.

Saturday it was raining when I woke up. I rang the company and they booked an air ticket on Southwest from Seattle/Tacoma to Louisville, KY leaving early on Monday morning as I did not want to fly Sunday and have to miss church. Next trip was to be Elizabethtown, KY to Milton, ON.

I got started, crossed the border and cleared Customs and made the delivery. The rain stopped after delivery and I got taxi to Campbell River Store in Surrey, BC where I caught the Quick Shuttle bus to SEA. I saw some more fall colours during the taxi ride. On the bus ride there was no problem clearing US Customs and there was a hard rain south of Bellingham in a hilly area but then it cleared up and we arrived at SEA on time. A friend of mine picked me up and I spent Saturday night at his house.

Sunday I was taken to Immanuel Reformed Baptist Church in Seatac, WA for the morning service. There morning message was on Romans 8:12-13 the mortification of sin. Then I was taken to motel where I checked in as I wanted to spare my friend from a super early rise in order to get me to the airport and the motel had free airport shuttle. I was taken back for the evening service and the message was on questions of distinctiveness of saving faith. I spent the night in Seatac, WA.

END OF THIS POST
Loose Cannon is offline  
Old Dec 13, 09, 7:33 am
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Great report!

Thanks for sharing

cbrendan is offline  
Old Dec 13, 09, 10:20 am
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Although new to FT, I really enjoy reading your TRs. Thanks for posting them!
ThatJohn is offline  
Old Dec 13, 09, 10:22 pm
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Hi LC- What exactly is a "hydro truck"?

Something like this?


Were all three trips the same kind of truck?
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Old Dec 13, 09, 11:31 pm
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Nice Report!
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Old Dec 16, 09, 3:18 am
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Originally Posted by g_leyser View Post
Hi LC- What exactly is a "hydro truck"?

Something like this?


Were all three trips the same kind of truck?
No, the truck pictured is a "vacuum truck". A hydro truck is a bucket truck commonly used to lift people to repair power or telephone lines.

All three trips were the same kind of truck.
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