Tuesday, December 17, 2013

Follow that plane

With these clear mornings we've been having, the jet airliner contrails have been particularly striking. Before the sun actually comes up over the horizon, it shines brilliantly in the upper atmosphere, lighting up the contrails across the sky.

Follow that plane!

Most air traffic over us moves north-south from Paris and Britain toward Mediterranean and African destinations. I know this because there's a cool website where you can watch the air traffic in real time and see which airline is flying where. As a transportation nerd, I can spend (and have spent)  way too much time watching the planes on my computer screen.

I thought the maneuver in the above picture was pretty neat as I watched one plane make a sharp right turn and join a line of about four airliners heading south the other morning. Of course, I was out in the vineyard at the time so I don't know where they were all going.


  1. Walt - you have much in common with Sue. She loves that thing with planes. She stalks travellers such as our two sons, even me when I fly interstate and when some times in the middle of the night and the gps or whatever they do to follow planes drops out, she wakes me in a mad panic. I do remember watching contrails on morning rides in France but not so many Down Under.

  2. I remember you following Ken's path home after one of his U.S. visits. Cool beans, that site.

  3. Great composition with the lines of the jet trails over the silhouettes of the trees.

  4. This past week i was busy using the site to track both Y and my sis on different flights in Europe and half way around the world. I was surprised to see the traffic in the gulf area - UAE and Qatar and the east coast of Australia when it was midnight in Montréal.

  5. You got me addicted to "plane finder". I follow Air France flights 66/65, Lufhtansa 456/457, KLM 601/602, many Hawaiin airline flights from LAX or JFK to Honolulu. It is too bad most flights drop out above Africa and part of Asia. It is fun to do, particularly when one cannot sleep at night or
    when friends are traveling.

  6. I need to follow my daughter's flights tomorrow-ATL-AMS, AMS to NAR and onto finial destination JRO. Ouf!
    Moonrise yesterday was spectacular here.

  7. Hi Walt , we see this all the time over our house and village. We are on the flight path for the aircraft flying from Heathrow to America and Canada ,, I have photos of several in the air at once :-)

  8. leon, all nerds together!

    judy, I like to track his flights, except when I'm sleeping.

    stuart, thanks. One of those times when you see something cool AND have the camera!

    t.b., it's fun, eh?

    nadege, there's always something to do on the internet, n'est-ce pas?

    evelyn, good luck! Here, too, btw.

    anne, it's fun to watch and to imagine who's going where. I always think that up there is a flight attendant pushing a cart down the aisle...


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