Short Final

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Heard on climb-out shortly after taking off behind a Bonanza A36: ... Bonanza: "Departure, this is Bonanza 12A. Ahh, we just got started here but need to come back." ... Departure Control: "Bonanza 12A, understand you want to return to the field." ... Bonanza: "Affirmative. 12A." ... Departure Control: "Bonanza 12A, do you need any assistance?" ... Bonanza: "No. We just left the dog in the car." ... Departure Control: "Roger. Bonanza A12, turn right to 350 for sequencing. Expect runway 8L." -- Rick Harris More

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The Swiss Air Force PC-7 aerobatic team was returning in nine-ship Formation to Locarno Magadino Air Field (LSZL) some years ago. ... Team Leader: "Locarno Tower, Turbo 947 nine-ship inbound to split overhead." ... TWR Operator: [Gives clearance to enter and split and to report on downwind individually.] ... Then: ... Pilot 1: "Number One downwind." ... TWR: "Number One, report final -- 26R." ... Pilot 2: "Number Two downwind." ... TWR: "Number Two, report final -- 26R." ... And so on. For all nine aircraft. ... Then it gets better, as they mix downwind and final: ... Pilot 1: "Number One. Final, 26R." ... TWR: "Number One, cleared to land -- 26R." ... Pilot 7: "Number Seven downwind." ... TWR: "Number Seven, report final -- 26R." ... Pilot 2: "Number Two. Final, 26R." ... TWR: "Number Two, cleared to land -- 26R." ... Until I hear the following: ... Pilot 5: "Number Five. Final, 26R." ... TWR: "Number Five, you're becoming Number Two. Do you have Number One in sight?" ... There was some clicking of mic buttons, and a voice asked: ... "Did someone check that?!" -- Alex Husy More

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This was one of those days when everyone was getting a bad ride and trying to find a smooth altitude. Everyone was bugging ATC about the ride. As we were coming north off the coast of Florida on our way back to JFK from Montego Bay, a Cactus flight came on and, after complaining about the ride, asked, "Do you know when it will smooth out?" The controller responded, "I just talked to the next sector. He says when your wheels are on the ground." There was a short pause, then Catcus said in a confused voice, "Our destination is Cancun." To which the controller responded, "Yup! I know that." -- Cory Wolf, via e-mail More

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A commercial 747 was taxiing for take-off when a deer darted in front of the plane and was hit. The captain immediately called his wife to explain he would be arriving late as the plane had hit a deer. His wife asked, "What altitude was that deer at?" -- Nick Goodrich, via e-mail More

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I heard this exchange between Boston approach and someone doing an approach into Nashua, New Hampshire. It seems the ground speed of the aircraft was less than Boston expected, and someone at Boston finally said: "62B, are you a helicopter?" ... 62B: "Errrr, no but I'm flying one." -- Larry Levin, via e-mail More

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I was holding short of runway 9L waiting for an arriving jet to clear the runway. As he was clearing, he asked, "What's ground control?" ... The tower answered, "They are the people you talk to when you want to drive around on the airport. [slight pause] I always wanted to say that!" ... The jet pilot replied, "You just made my day!" -- Jim Speidel, via e-mail More

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Recently, an airliner checked in with Boston Center at FL340. ... Pilot: "Boston Center, good morning. Airliner 123 at FL340. Light chop." ... ATC: "Airliner 123, good morning. That light chop has been there for the last 29 years." -- Luigie Martinez, via e-mail More

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I was picking up my Cherokee 160 at the Charlotte County (Florida) airport after IFR/weight-and-balance certifications. As I was preparing to taxi out, I heard another pilot report there was a turtle that was "taxiing" toward runway 22. Not too long after this report, I heard yet another taxiing pilot ask the question, "What type of airplane is he in?" I never did hear the turtle report any of it's five Ws! -- Arthur L. Hewitt, via e-mail More

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Back near Christmas of 1979, I was on my first solo ferry flight to Europe in a Cessna 206. I was filed from Bangor, Maine, direct to Shannon, Ireland, to negate the need for the required inspection in Moncton for single-engine crossings. ... I passed a position report mid-Atlantic through a passing airliner on 121.5. After I finished the report, he came back and asked me what I was flying at 9,000 feet. ... I said, "A 206." ... There was a pause, and then he asked, "A Cessna 206?" ... I said, "Yes," and there was a longer pause. ... Then he came back with his best "captain" voice and said, "Don't you know it's a four-engine ocean, kid?" ... I ferried aircraft for ten years after that, which was a great way to travel but didn't pay much and kept trying to kill me. I finally got a job flying night freight in FedEx Caravans, which I've been happily doing for almost 25 years. -- Greg Cotton, via e-mail More

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When approaching (and departing) an airport, I turn on my strobes and landing light to be more easily seen by others. Several weeks ago, I was about five miles south of the field when a Bonanza pilot came on CTAS to announce his take-off and departure. ... Bonanza: "Bonanza 12345 taking runway 30 for take-off with a south departure." ... Cessna (me): "Cessna 12345 is five miles south at 2,000 feet and landing 30." ... Bonanza: "O.K. I'm looking but don't see you." ... Me: "You should see me in a second. I'm lit up." ... Bonanza (after a pause): "I hope you're talking about your airplane and not you." -- Bruce Anthony, via e-mail More