Friday, January 12, 2018

So long, Redwood

It was just over a year ago that Alaska rolled out this B737-900 commemorating the U.S. government's approval of its plan to take over Virgin America. Yesterday was the final day that Virgin America operated as Virgin America. Today, while the aircraft are as yet unchanged, former Virgin America flights operated under the Alaska operating certificate and callsign. The Redwood callsign is no longer in use, and the brand will be completely retired sometime in 2019.

This is the first Virgin America aircraft that marked the upcoming change. I first saw it at LAX a few days after Christmas. It bears no airline name, but it's an A321neo and therefore a Virgin America aircraft, while the markings appear to be in the new Alaska livery colors, as seen on the B737 below:

The acquisition of Virgin American makes Alaska the fifth-largest US airline. At LAX, both airlines are already co-located in Terminal 6, so the change will hopefully be simpler for passengers than some of the previous airline mergers.

So we say goodbye to Redwood, at least on the radio. We'll still see the airplanes for another year or so; stay tuned for the first Airbus in the Alaska scheme when it appears. Meanwhile, I'll leave you a few recent Virgin America shots:

Sunday, December 31, 2017


Just before Christmas, SpaceX launched a Falcon 9 rocket from the California coast. While I was away, special photo credit goes to CS, who caught a series of shots that are sequenced below:

Here are a few more shots that didn't fit in the animation:

Special thanks to CS for these shots. Happy New Year everyone!

Monday, December 4, 2017

Catching up

I was doing so well for a while, and then all of a sudden it's been well over a month since I've posted. Oops. There is some good news though: in the interim I've had two trainees finish their training. Congrats to JB, our newest journeyman controller at LAX. And welcome back to TT, who was out for a while but has now returned. Of course, no good deed goes unpunished: Having gotten rid of those two trainees, I've been awarded two more!

Otherwise, today's entry is a collection of interesting shots from the time away. Enjoy!

I got to drive this!

The MD-87 was a rare bird when it was new. Nowadays, it's very uncommon indeed.

SkyWest now flies for Alaska Airlines at LAX, in addition to American, Delta, and United.

A SkyWest E-175 with a Delta A319

Horizon still flies for Alaska at LAX as well. This is the first Horizon airplane I've seen in the new Alaska livery.

Volaris has a revised livery; this is the first example seen at LAX

Wednesday, October 11, 2017

Full Moon Rising

Last week's Hunter's moon rose up right between the north and south finals into LAX. 
Special credit goes to UW for catching this photo!