The first time I came to Alaska was by auto.
Since then we have flown.
Today was a particularly interesting flight so I pulled out my camera to capture it.
From my First Class seat (a very pleasant free upgrade :o) ) I watched us begin
to roll down the runway at the same time as this UPS plane did on a parallel runway.
I quickly spun my limited pilot knowledge through my brain
but couldn't find anything to suggest that it was a good thing to be doing.
As we were gaining speed, the UPS plane stopped.
Jet Blue was ahead of us in the line for take off.
They started a test flight to Anchorage a few weeks ago
to see what the market would be like.
The lines for takeoff are a little longer in Oregon than they are in Anchorage.
All of the recent--and consistent--rain has made everything very green.
Does it look a little yellow to you?
There is a lot of traffic in all directions for the controllers to watch here!
Portland, the City of Roses, is known for its extensive bridges.
Developed at the intersection of the mighty Columbia River and Willamette River,
it has always been an important shipping port.
It is also known for its productive growing seasons and incredible timberlands.
When we started up through the clouds it was beginning to rain again
watering all of those trees and flowers.
Then the clouds below us blocked our view of the changing landscape.
Between the layers of clouds we were in a whole new world.
We missed Washington completely but when we flew into Alaska airspace,
we could see the changes below.
Earlier planes flying at a lower altitude had left trails for us to follow.
Alaska was much greener than when I left a week ago.
We flew into Anchorage on a different approach and the guy beside me
(who was also a long-time frequent flyer)
and I were both confused about where we were.
The Mat-Su Valley, north of Anchorage, is known for its
huge vegetables and farms.
And those were the only farms I knew of around the Anchorage area.
Because one of the runways is closed in Anchorage the jet flew this way
and I discovered something new.....
Big farm in the Knik area.
They were like a beautiful quilt set against the mountains.
Attempts to get funding for a bridge to connect the area to Anchorage are ongoing.
Maybe when they build houses all the way up Hillside,
they will be more interested in a bridge over the bay.
The runway begins/ends right above the water's edge.
As we landed we could see downtown Anchorage
surrounded by water and mountains.
I left Oregon in the daylight and had flown thousands of miles.
When we landed it was almost 10 PM
and still bright outside.
I knew I was back in Alaska......