Sunday, October 16, 2011

Wasn't I just here last week?!

Sitting around waiting for the next airplane to take-off or land is kind of exciting. You never know what will show up on the runway, even though the flight schedule is all over the Internet. There were a lot of plane spotters on Imperial Hill today. I think the goal is to write down the tail number of each plane though I don't know what they do with the info. Is there a website where everyone keys what planes they saw?

Earlier this afternoon, I tried to find other locations to take photos of LAX, especially on the north side of the runways. I drove west on Imperial Highway, north on Pershing Drive, then east on Westchester Parkway; there were No Stopping signs posted on all streets. On the map, it appears there are a bunch of side streets just north of Westchester Parkway but looking closer on Google Maps, all of them are blocked off by fences. Is this because of 9/11? I ended up driving around the Century/Sepulveda area a couple times before parking outside of the In-n-Out on Sepulveda and Westchester. The place was packed but fortunately, there is a tiny park next door and there were lots of people hanging out. It was just like any neighborhood park but every few minutes, a jet would roar by and land on runway 24R.

B-18717 Boeing 747-409F (China Airlines 5108 TPE-LAX)
When I first got to the park, I heard people yell, "A big one is coming!" I then realized they were referring to an incoming plane, I quickly got out my camera (with the 18-250mm lens) and snapped of a few photos.

Not sure if this park has a name... I think everyone just calls it the In-n-Out Park. That guy lying down seems to have been there for a long time.

Three American Eagle Embraer jets landed one after another. Since Terminal 4 is on the "other" side of LAX, I think all these plane have to taxi around the west end of the airport to get to their gates.

N209UA Boeing 777-222ER (United Airlines 878 PVG-LAX)

With the sun low in the southwest, it's hard to get anything once the plane passes the park, and definitely no take-off photos from here.

N524VA Airbus A-319-112 (Virgin America 932 SFO-LAX)
Virgin must have registered "Virgin America" in the US since the tail number starts with "N" (USA) instead of "G" (UK).

Southwest! Since SWA is in Terminal 1, I have not seen any planes up close from Imperial Hill. The photo is a bit blurry so I can't make out the tail number but this appears to be flight 1982 from Austin. The plane is a Boeing 737-300... I think SWA only flies 737s.

HB-JMD Airbus A-340-313X (Swissair 40 ZRH-LAX)

HL7420 Boeing 747-48E (Asiana Airlines 966 ICN-LAX)

This is the Asiana 747 freighter (no passenger windows) again. I like this shot... it reminds me of a scene from Ghost in the Shell.

Instead of going home, I figured that since I was here, I may as well go to Imperial Hill and take some more shots... since every other flight seems to be an American/Delta/United 757, I'll ignore those for now.

By the time I drove under the runway on Sepulveda and arrived at Imperial Hill, the Asiana 747 had taxied around to the south side of LAX to get to it's "home" near Terminal 8.

N120AK Bombardier Global Express (GC Air LAX-SJC)

N908SW Bombardier CRJ2 (Skywest 6288 LAX-MRY)
MRY = Monterey. I was wondering how much the fare was... the same flight next Sunday would cost $239 one way on United Express (same plane).

HL7498 Boeing 747-4B5 (Korean Airlines)
They were moving the plane from TBIT to the remote gate area so I'm not sure which flight it was. Korean Air bought A-380s from Airbus; hopefully they will operate them on the Incheon-LA route.

4T94101... wait, that's not a plane.

F-OSUN Airbus A-340-313X (Air Tahiti Nui 7 LAX-FAA)
FAA = Faa'a International Airport in Papeete, French Polynesia

N262DG Cessna T303
This small twin propeller plane was flying over LAX. It looked really far away... I was surprised that I can read the "tail" number in the photo.

HL7756 Boeing 777-28EER (Asiana Airlines)
This was also being towed to the remote gate area, probably to open up a gate at TBIT for another incoming flight.

9V-SGE Airbus A-340- 541 (Singapore Airlines 38 SIN-LAX)
This is the all-business-class flight from Singapore to Los Angeles... 16.5 hours non-stop and one-way ticket costs ~SGD6000. Not sure how much that is in US dollars but it's expensive.

I tried out the panorama mode on my Sony a55 camera. You press the shutter button and move the camera slowly to the right. The camera is taking lots of photos and stitching it together automatically... pretty cool, but the camera makes an awful racket when it's taking the photo. Final output is 8192 x 1856 pixels (shrunk down here to only 800 pixels wide).

Anonymous readers getting bored? Just fivesix more to go...

N563SW Embraer EMB-120 (Skywest 6338 LAX-SAN)
Wow, airfare for the same flight next Sunday is $460.

N864GA McDonnell Douglas MD-81 (Allegiant 378 LAX-EUG)

N452PA Boeing 747-46NF (Polar Air Cargo 214 - CVG-LAX)
CVG = Cincinnati-Northern Kentucky International Airport. I guess they ran out of room on the Ohio side and put the airport in Kentucky.

JA716A Boeing 777-281ER (All Nippon Airways 1006 HND-LAX)
I was all excited when I saw a big ANA jet, thinking it was the new Boeing 787... but it turned out to be a regular 777-200ER. Coincidentally, this is the same flight I took from Tokyo to LA on my last trip to Beijing.

I couldn't get the tail number but this is a old McDonnell Douglas DC-10. I don't think there are any passenger carrying DC-10s left. FedEx usually flies a MD-11 on this Memphis to LA route so I'm lucky to have seen (part of) the DC-10.

G-CIVF Boeing 747-436 (British Airways 282 LAX-LHR)
For some reason, it took forever for this flight to taxi to the end of the runway and take-off. There were several of us waiting to see this jumbo jet take-off before leaving Imperial Hill.


Anonymous said...

Your other anonymous reader is bored too

Anonymous said...

i'm not bored. actually LAX is like my second home. plus the customs agents are much more friendlier than my wife when i come home.

actually i took the Swissair LH 40 flight from Zurich (ZRH) on one of my trips to sweden. i like swiss air, they give you chocolate at the end of a flight (swiss chocolate). it is a tight connection at Zurich though (45 minutes) to get the next connection to sweden.

i was wondering if you can get some good pics at the parking lots/structures coming. maybe the race track is too far; otherwise you can watch planes and bet on horses.

Anonymous said...

How about some pics of the flight attendants?