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Air China Boeing 747-89L Arrival into Canberra Airport (YSCB)




With a SW wind, we anticipated a landing on runway 17, pulled to the side of Majura Road, roughly aligned with the VOR/DME. The Air China Boeing 747-89L was due in at 3:16 pm, I had time for practice - the sheep from the adjacent paddock firmly unmoved by the arriving jets. As I reviewed exposure, the ATIS declared a runway change, and we relocated to the 35 threshold. When the 747 joined up, six minutes out, we navigated the collapsed rabbit holes and long grass towards the bald patch in the middle of the field. From this position, I can see a clear run north to south. Clear skies. Back to the sun. We saw her bright and slow. More cars pulled in. A few people climbed on car roofs for a view over the barrier. Cameras. Kids. Then it was on us, great and clumsy, slow overhead and late to meet the runway. Pilots joke that if you pay for the use of the runway, you might as well use all of it. Smoke from the brake system curled around and the wind and exhaust carried it away. B-2480 began towards the bay.

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