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Monday, October 10, 2011

Starway 711P - Part II

May 2008

XLF "Starway" 711P

When I started writing about this operation the intention was to put the focus just over the last flight, but I found that I also had some nice photos from the previous days that were worthy enough to be shared. That's why this post was split in two parts.

This is the list of all the flights operated by my crew. Another crew was involved in this operation doing more flights for these airlines.


So what's so special about XLF711P flight? Well, first let's get into the departure airport - Charles de Gaulle.

F-RAJA from Armée de l'Air

My first sighting of the impressive An-225 Mriya

Concorde F-BVFF displayed @ CDG

Nice tail line-up with our aircraft included

"Ed Force One"

CS-TMP

F-BVFF + Ed Force One


CS-TMP waiting for its flight back to Lisbon

XLF711P would be a position flight back to our base and I was also convinced that it would be my last flight with LUZair. I had the luck to be part of the crew that was off duty - even without passengers, in these flights one crew should be responsible for safety and pre-flight checks, engaging and detaching the evacuation slides, etc. This meant that I was free to fully enjoy the aircraft in this supposed last flight. I could choose my take-off and landing seats other than boring cabin crew jumpseats. So I asked the captain if I could take-off and land in the cockpit. Quite original, having 310 available seats in the passenger's cabin, han? :)

While our airplane was getting prepared for its flight, I took some pictures of the MD-80 F-GMLU in an all white c/s that was parked near us. This MD-80 belonged to Blue Line where my friend Jonathan Zaninger worked as a cabin crew member just until they went out of business one year ago...

F-GMLU

I'd like to express my sympathy to all dedicated workers of this airline that lost their jobs.

Life goes on and it's time to get into the cockpit and start our taxi for take-off.

Again the An-225

Fokker 100 F-GNLI

TAM & XL

CDG's prominent control tower and TAM's MD-11

Cleared for take-off!

CDG

Abeam Orly Airport

Somewhere near Orly

I spent the whole flight in the cockpit and I really had some amazing sights...


Spacious cockpit!

Cruising FL370 @ M.84

Developing Cumulonimbus cloud


In front of us, a small and sluggish TAP Airbus. Overtaking was a matter of minutes!


Beside overtaking Airbuses, cruising at 84% the speed of sound means that CDG-LIS is a really short hop and soon we started our descent to Lisbon.

Ota AFB - deactivated

Alverca

Lisbon Airport

Lisbon Airport and "Vasco da Gama" bridge

Benfica Stadium


Costa da Caparica

Bugio lighthouse

On final RWY03

Parking next to a FedEx A300

Automatic Positioning and Information System helping our L-1011 


End of Starway 711P flight
(you can see the callsign that gives name to this post in the post-it)

As I was leaving the L-1011, I was already getting nostalgic and taking lots of photos...

Fantastic design...


CS-TMP reg. under the wing

... and a video of the windmilling fan.


Final moments...

My crew...

Engine #2 line maintenance

Rounded wingtip

Main landing gear

I really thought my ACMI adventure and L-1011 flights were over. However this was not my last flight. A few days later I would fly again for Air Méditerranée and for TUIfly Nordic.

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