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Only Eight Pilots Are Qualified to Land on This ‘Terrifying’ Runway
The Blaze ^ | Dec 30, 2011

Posted on 12/31/2011 7:27:28 AM PST by KeyLargo

Only Eight Pilots Are Qualified to Land on This ‘Terrifying’ Runway

There is a small airport in the Himalayan mountains with a 6,500-foot runway and picturesque surroundings. When flying into Paro Airport in Bhutan passengers may be staring in terrified awe of the 18,000-foot mountainous peaks or have their eyes squeezed tightly shut as the pilot weaves through the range.

But only eight pilots are qualified to fly into Paro. And up until earlier this year, only one airline serviced the airport. The Daily Mail reports that take off and landing can only take place in daylight hours:

The runway is just 6,500 feet long – one of the few in the world shorter than their elevation above sea level.

Planes have to weave through the dozens of houses that are scattered across the mountainside – coming within feet of clipping the roofs.

Strong winds whip through the valleys, often resulting in severe turbulence. Passengers who have been on flights to the airport have described the landing as ‘terrifying’.


TOPICS: Chit/Chat; Outdoors; Travel
KEYWORDS: airports; aviationping; himalays; mountains
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1 posted on 12/31/2011 7:27:40 AM PST by KeyLargo
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To: KeyLargo; Tijeras_Slim; FireTrack; Pukin Dog; citabria; B Knotts; kilowhskey; cyphergirl; ...
AVIATION PING
2 posted on 12/31/2011 7:32:07 AM PST by KeyLargo
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To: KeyLargo; Tijeras_Slim; FireTrack; Pukin Dog; citabria; B Knotts; kilowhskey; cyphergirl; ...
AVIATION PING
3 posted on 12/31/2011 7:33:26 AM PST by KeyLargo
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To: KeyLargo
As a passenger, I have flown onto and off of mountains in jungle terrain; two airfields in the Himalayas; and a slew of third world pothole strips. The worst, for me, was landing in Tegucigalpa, Honduras. The aircraft had to literally drop out of the air to make it and stopped within feet of the end of the strip. Take off was straight into the side of a mountain. Sometime after I had been there and marveled at my survival, another jet passenger plane hit the mountain. I understand large passenger jet aircraft no longer land at that airport.
4 posted on 12/31/2011 7:39:16 AM PST by WorkingClassFilth (Soon to be a man without a country.)
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To: WorkingClassFilth

“...come on, show a little backbone!”


5 posted on 12/31/2011 7:44:58 AM PST by STYRO (Take this government and shove it.)
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To: KeyLargo

was landed in a stream bed in a valley in alaska once by a bush pilot. had to wear a crash helmet. that was my scariest.


6 posted on 12/31/2011 7:53:46 AM PST by beebuster2000
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To: WorkingClassFilth
In and out of Tegucigalpa does look kind of exciting:

Tancontin approach

7 posted on 12/31/2011 7:54:08 AM PST by Yardstick
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To: WorkingClassFilth

Landing in downtown San Diego can be a thrill. As you decent you go by office buildings and I could swear you can see people at their computers working away.


8 posted on 12/31/2011 7:56:34 AM PST by ExtremeUnction
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To: WorkingClassFilth

They lengthened the runway.


9 posted on 12/31/2011 7:58:20 AM PST by TomServo
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To: ExtremeUnction

“Buddha Air also serves the facility, which takes in about 30,000 people each year.”

Would “Mohammed Airlines” be ok, too?


10 posted on 12/31/2011 8:03:35 AM PST by treetopsandroofs (Had FDR been GOP, there would have been no World Wars, just "The Great War" and "Roosevelt's Wars".)
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To: KeyLargo
Blah! I could easily land there.


11 posted on 12/31/2011 8:05:37 AM PST by cll (I am the warrant and the sanction)
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To: treetopsandroofs

Only if they tech the pilots to land...


12 posted on 12/31/2011 8:07:04 AM PST by null and void (Day 1074 of America's ObamaVacation from reality [Heroes aren't made, Frank, they're cornered...])
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To: KeyLargo
But seriously folks...



13 posted on 12/31/2011 8:07:41 AM PST by Baynative (The penalty for not participating in politics is you will be governed by your inferiors.)
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To: treetopsandroofs

I saw your screen name and wondered if you signed up just to comment on this thread...


14 posted on 12/31/2011 8:08:17 AM PST by null and void (Day 1074 of America's ObamaVacation from reality [Heroes aren't made, Frank, they're cornered...])
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To: SkyDancer
Thought you'd find this interesting.

Happy New Year!

15 posted on 12/31/2011 8:09:28 AM PST by Northern Yankee (Where Liberty dwells, there is my Country. - Benjamin Franklin)
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To: KeyLargo

Queenstown, New Zealand. Ugh...


16 posted on 12/31/2011 8:12:14 AM PST by stormer
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To: stormer

Or the old days before they built the new airport in Hong Kong...


17 posted on 12/31/2011 8:13:55 AM PST by stormer
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To: KeyLargo
Another pic of the strip in Bhutan:

Paro in Bhutan

18 posted on 12/31/2011 8:14:46 AM PST by Yardstick
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To: WorkingClassFilth

Sounds a lot like landing in Afghanistan.


19 posted on 12/31/2011 8:17:01 AM PST by Grizzled Bear (No More RINOS!)
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To: Northern Yankee
Hi!! And Good Morning! And Happy New Year!

Ya, I saw the video of the plane landing there. What a ride! Okay, well off to brekie. Back here soon.

20 posted on 12/31/2011 8:19:47 AM PST by SkyDancer ("If You Want To Learn To Love Better, You Should Start With A Friend Who You Hate")
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To: KeyLargo
Kennett, Mo. 30 years ago my first time on an airplane(King Air one engine). Unmanned Airport, Short runway, cliff at the end.

New co-pilot Responding to question from Senior pilot “Can you make it, Can you make it?”: “I don't know, I don't know”.

Pilot responds, “pull up, pull up”.

Plane pulled up, circled, and pilot executed landing. I was really glad to get feet on the ground! Sure would not want to land in this place.

21 posted on 12/31/2011 8:21:54 AM PST by greeneyes (Moderation in defense of your country is NO virtue. Let Freedom Ring.)
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To: Yardstick

22 posted on 12/31/2011 8:22:52 AM PST by KeyLargo
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To: KeyLargo
So, do they have a MS Flight Simulator edition of “Hellholes of the World”, so that we can start training our 16 y.o. how to land in these places?
23 posted on 12/31/2011 8:28:23 AM PST by texas booster (Join FreeRepublic's Folding@Home team (Team # 36120) Cure Alzheimer's!)
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To: beebuster2000
...was landed in a stream bed in a valley in alaska once by a bush pilot. had to wear a crash helmet. that was my scariest.

You win the thread 'scariest'...

24 posted on 12/31/2011 8:31:08 AM PST by GOPJ (Lets make 'Corrupt Liberal Media' a household term. - - freeper Uncle Lonny)
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To: greeneyes
"cliff at the end."

?

Maybe you were seeing the canal at the end of runway 18.

Obstructions: 44 ft. tree, 1336 ft. from runway, 225 ft. right of centerline, 25:1 slope to clear 46 ft. trees, 1200 ft. from runway, 340 ft. left of centerline, 21:1 slope to clear

Kennett Memorial Airport

25 posted on 12/31/2011 8:31:36 AM PST by KeyLargo
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To: KeyLargo

Lytton, B.C. is fun in the summer.


26 posted on 12/31/2011 8:37:09 AM PST by headsonpikes (Mass murder and cannibalism are the twin sacraments of socialism - "Who-whom?"-Lenin)
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To: KeyLargo

I was not seeing anything. Totally fogged in. That description is the one I was given at the time. I was told that there were airport changes in the planning stages.

Didn’t have google then.


27 posted on 12/31/2011 8:38:03 AM PST by greeneyes (Moderation in defense of your country is NO virtue. Let Freedom Ring.)
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To: KeyLargo

In late 1950`s took off in a non-schedule charter dare Electra 188 with 10 other gutsy passengers at $100 a head and a couple of hotshot pilots at midnight from La Guardia when all the regular airlines were grounded =It was an ice storm- but we didn`t care- It was two days before Christmas- had to get to Albany- Iced up all the way but the Electra took it all in stride-Landed on the iced runway and skidded nicely to the end. It didn’t have any anti-skids, so the brakes were of no use on the icy runway. Pilot turned the Electra off the tarp, coasted up to the fence gate, stopped and we all disembarked, slipping on the ice haha.This was done only with the props...
It was fun coz I was 18 and really brave ha. In those days you could fly anywhere coz the charter pilots would walk thru the terminal trying to drum up business- The pilots were hotdoggers from Korea, and there was no restrictive scheduling as today.


28 posted on 12/31/2011 8:38:38 AM PST by bunkerhill7 (Electras skidding in NY? Who knew?)
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To: texas booster

The world’s scariest runways

http://www.cnn.com/2008/TRAVEL/10/01/scariest.runways/index.html


29 posted on 12/31/2011 8:40:25 AM PST by KeyLargo
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To: greeneyes

All the other people in the plane who had been there before, were from the city. It’s possible that they thought a ditch was a cliff, I suppose. LOL.


30 posted on 12/31/2011 8:41:49 AM PST by greeneyes (Moderation in defense of your country is NO virtue. Let Freedom Ring.)
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To: KeyLargo
Only Eight Pilots Are Qualified to Land

So, only eight passed the final exam.......Were the others buried locally?

31 posted on 12/31/2011 8:54:12 AM PST by Hot Tabasco (Santa missed my house again....or maybe he's stuck in the chimney. I'll go look.......)
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To: greeneyes

Now this is a cliff!

landing in Saba

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bVdaFv6kbkw&feature=related


32 posted on 12/31/2011 9:01:43 AM PST by KeyLargo
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To: ExtremeUnction

Lindbergh field is almost in downtown San Diego. You can almost walk from down town to the airport.

Up until the mid 1970 there were miles and miles of open flat land just a few miles north of the city center. They should have moved the airport before all that land was turned into residential areas.

I will not be surprised to hear one of these days a plane going down in San Diego (back in the mid 1970s a PSA jet and a small private plane collided).


33 posted on 12/31/2011 9:13:28 AM PST by CIB-173RDABN
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To: WorkingClassFilth
"As a passenger, I have flown onto and off of mountains in jungle terrain; two airfields in the Himalayas; and a slew of third world pothole strips. The worst, for me, was landing in Tegucigalpa, Honduras. The aircraft had to literally drop out of the air to make it and stopped within feet of the end of the strip. Take off was straight into the side of a mountain. Sometime after I had been there and marveled at my survival, another jet passenger plane hit the mountain. I understand large passenger jet aircraft no longer land at that airport."

There used to be a problem like that at St. Thomas, US Virgin Islands. After a jet crashed into the mountain, the problem was solved in the old American spirit by removing much of the mountain.

34 posted on 12/31/2011 9:14:05 AM PST by Truth29
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To: WorkingClassFilth

Tegucigula landing of a 757.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=v_z5HtME9n8


35 posted on 12/31/2011 9:27:13 AM PST by Jack Hydrazine (It's the end of the world as we know it and I feel fine!)
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To: KeyLargo

That’s like landing on a non-moving, stretched aircraft carrier!


36 posted on 12/31/2011 9:35:37 AM PST by Jack Hydrazine (It's the end of the world as we know it and I feel fine!)
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To: Jack Hydrazine

I love this video; I understand they have recently contoured the terrain on the approach to make it safer.


37 posted on 12/31/2011 9:37:56 AM PST by joelt
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To: KeyLargo

A319 landing at Paro.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nlKApjc9T2U


38 posted on 12/31/2011 9:40:54 AM PST by Jack Hydrazine (It's the end of the world as we know it and I feel fine!)
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To: joelt

Gotta love St. Maarten’s landings and takeoffs!
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=d6ciBu-jMtE


39 posted on 12/31/2011 9:51:44 AM PST by Jack Hydrazine (It's the end of the world as we know it and I feel fine!)
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To: KeyLargo

Lukla Airport, Nepal

The Airport is 10,000 ft above sea level.
The Runway is only 1750 ft long, and goes down at a 10% incline.
One end of the runway is a rock face, the other is a 2,000 ft. cliff.

On approach, the landing happens from a descending turn onto a short final. There is no go around, you get ONE chance to land. Period.

In summer, during the climbing season, it will see somewhere around 50 fights per day, including the occasional C-130.

One of the airports on my bucket list!


40 posted on 12/31/2011 10:13:10 AM PST by tcrlaf (Election 2012: THE RAPTURE OF THE DEMOCRATS)
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To: KeyLargo
Tenzing-Hillary Airport.
41 posted on 12/31/2011 10:16:05 AM PST by tcrlaf (Election 2012: THE RAPTURE OF THE DEMOCRATS)
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To: STYRO
>> “...come on, show a little backbone!”<<

LOL It’s that exposed backbone after crashing that most worry about!

42 posted on 12/31/2011 10:17:45 AM PST by CynicalBear
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To: KeyLargo
I saw this on some TV show that counted down the most dangerous/frightening airports in the world, and this one really was on the list. IIRC, there's only one way to approach the runway, and landing, it's "downhill!" And not just a little bit! They interviewed one of the pilots and some of the passengers. I believe they also showed footage from the cockpit during takeoff and landing.

Mark

43 posted on 12/31/2011 10:24:27 AM PST by MarkL (Do I really look like a guy with a plan?)
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To: Jack Hydrazine

Loved those videos, brought back some fun times both on the beach and in the air.

:)


44 posted on 12/31/2011 10:32:41 AM PST by Irish Eyes
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To: tcrlaf

Maybe this is the airport I was thinking of...

Mark


45 posted on 12/31/2011 10:33:01 AM PST by MarkL (Do I really look like a guy with a plan?)
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To: KeyLargo

This ones a You Tube Classic

747 landing at St. Maarten in the Caribbean

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zAfQwDizpRo


46 posted on 12/31/2011 10:44:44 AM PST by CodeJockey (Barack 0bamacide... Destroys economies on on contact!)
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To: KeyLargo

Try landing at 2RR, River Ranch, Florida.
Just past the threshold is a pack of about 25 turkeys.
Gun the RV6A and go a little further down the runway.
400 pound wild hog on the funway.
Gas er a little and still more turkeys.
Ok, so about the last 800 feet I safely set er down
Rent a golf cart and go to the skeet range.
Look out!


47 posted on 12/31/2011 11:24:51 AM PST by Joe Boucher ((FUBO) You'd be mad as hell to if you were married to that wookie bitch little fag that he is)
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To: ExtremeUnction

Flew to San Diego a couple of times. scary, but watching them take off was quite an experience also. You’d swear they were going to crash into some office building...


48 posted on 12/31/2011 11:37:32 AM PST by goat granny
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To: KeyLargo

“Whew!!! That’s the shortest runway I’ve ever landed on” gasped the pilot

“It’s short all right, but it sure is wide” said his pale co pilot


49 posted on 12/31/2011 11:43:33 AM PST by bert (K.E. N.P. +12 ..... Crucifixion is coming)
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To: tcrlaf
One of the airports on my bucket list!

Based on your description, might I suggest making that the last item on that list? :=)

50 posted on 12/31/2011 11:44:37 AM PST by Bob
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