First Time Poster; Long-Term Turbulaphobe

jitteryjen

Super Lifetime Elite Diamond
Hello, all. I can't believe I finally found a web site for the turbulence-challenged like myself (and a few crazies who actually seek it out -- God love ya!). I am a white-knuckle flier and particularly anxious about a Feb. 15 trip from Newark to Vail (stopping in Denver). Return will be Feb. 20. Before that, I will learn how to request a personal forecast, but in the meantime I would appreciate feedback from those who have flown over the Rockies as I never have. My research shows it is the worst place in the U.S. for turbulence. Would love to hear the experience of others and how you coped. Booked on a united flight, airbus of the same make that crashed (but safely!) into the Hudson River outside my office window. We have three young kids in tow so I can't drug myself!

Thanks for any advice.
 

hochstem

New member
Denver is usually a bit bumpy as a resident here and one who flies over 100K miles a year. It's just the wind blowing over the mountains, and a bit of bump is normal. Remember though the airport is quite new versus E Coast airports and very safe. In addition, best news is that United and Frontier pilots are very experienceerd with it, so it's just normal for them. There are also 7 runways in every direction to maximize safety. In addition, Denver has the second longest runway in the world so there is always room for a large margin of safety which you won't need given your aircraft, but it's nice if you're flying a big bird like an A380 which is approved into Denver now. So if those guys can land here so can your A319/20. Mornings into and out of Denver are usually best and smooth, but it all depends upon the day, and afternoon storms are not a problem unless it's late spring/summer/early fall when you get afternoon storms but in Feb that should NOT be a problem.
 

bologna

New member
I've flown into Denver a number of times, usually only experiencing turbulence on initial climb on takeoff. Every landing I've ever been on there has been butter smooth, and even the takeoffs were only moderately uncomfortable for 10 minutes or so. All of my trips have been in the summer, however, so I can't say for sure if it directly equates to the trip you'll be making. And, flying on the EWR-DEN leg doesn't require flying over the Rockies itself, only the DEN to Vail leg will travel over the rockies. The good news is that the flight is only around 41 minutes of actual in-the-air time, so you'll be back on the ground safely in no time. And, for some reason, the air around 20,000 feet seems to usually be quite smooth (I've seen this in looking at the turbulence maps).

On a side note, DEN is a lovely airport and was built with safety in mind. No runway at the airport is shorter than 12,000 feet long, despite the fact that almost any aircraft can land on a 6,000-7,000-foot runway.
 

sgambaccini

Lifetime Elite
hello. I have flown many many times over the rockies, and into Denver, and (maybe because you sort of expect it) it's never that bad! I once flew into Denver on a small United commuter plane from jackson Hole, and it got really choppy at some point, but these pilots are so used to it, they just tell you exactly where and why you'll get those few bumps. The view of those snowcapped peaks, make those few bumps almost enjoyable!!!! just have fun. You're in a big plane and in great hands!!
 

Walrusmuse

New member
To be honest, the worst turbulence i have ever had was coming out of Denver to Bozeman, but it was on Frontier and on a prop, and though I was terrified (and I am a very frequent flier), it was old hat to the crew and pilots, whom I asked about the ride.

That being said, this is a pretty calm weather time barring winter storms, and you are on a large enough plane to ride a lot of it out in the rare chance it gets bumpy.

A great thing that helps me on United (i recently booked a flight with them just for this reason) is the pilot's channel on the radio. It is a blast! You hear the pilots interact with other planes, ATC, Towers, etc. It creates a reminder that turbulence is utterly normal and not making the plane pitch and creak, it is just riding fine. The kids will love it too if they are old enough, to hear the pilots chat. It helps me tons to remember the skill and professionalism of the pilots, and how they would never fly a plane into some sort of dangerous turbulence.

Hang in there-enjoy the lovely airport, it really is cool, and the lovely mountains. My wife and I are both nervous fliers and I remember a trip from Seattle where the view of Mt. Ranier was enough to distract us into calmness...
 

jitteryjen

Super Lifetime Elite Diamond
First Time Poster; Long-Term Turbulaphobe

Many thanks to all of you for your thoughtful replies! I am very grateful. Some of you pointed out the largeness of the plane as helping to ensure a smoother ride ... well, here's a new wrinkle. Friends just offered us a ride on their private jet (a G200) from NY to Vail (skipping Denver). Hubby wants to jump on it ... normally I would, but wondering if I should stay put to better weather turbulence. Wow, this should be my toughest choice in life ...
 

tb_neg

Administrator
Staff member
Take the private jet, sounds like a wonderful opportunity. They can fly very high (even higher than commercial airplanes), so rides can be smoother
 

sgambaccini

Lifetime Elite
I would jump on that private plane too! If the choice was between the commercial flight (big plane) and a small private plane (turbo prop) I'd rather be on the big bird for that long a flight. But a G2? it's just as fast if not faster, super modern and safe. Lucky you!
 

jitteryjen

Super Lifetime Elite Diamond
Thank you, sgambaccini ... going to go for it! just my luck i joined this website to get a turbulence forecast for tomorrow and tb is off himself this week! but just reading the experiences of others has been a help.
 

pinworm

Lifetime Elite
Rockies

Rockies

Hello, all. I can't believe I finally found a web site for the turbulence-challenged like myself (and a few crazies who actually seek it out -- God love ya!). I am a white-knuckle flier and particularly anxious about a Feb. 15 trip from Newark to Vail (stopping in Denver). Return will be Feb. 20. Before that, I will learn how to request a personal forecast, but in the meantime I would appreciate feedback from those who have flown over the Rockies as I never have. My research shows it is the worst place in the U.S. for turbulence. Would love to hear the experience of others and how you coped. Booked on a united flight, airbus of the same make that crashed (but safely!) into the Hudson River outside my office window. We have three young kids in tow so I can't drug myself!

Thanks for any advice.
The Rockies are more a question of frequent turbulence as opposed to SEVERE turbulence. It's bumpy more often than elsewhere but not necessarily more bumpy. I fly over them alot and it's always light to moderate..and short. Even flying across them never takes more than 30 minutes..they are a narrow range. In anycase, even if it's bumpy, it's short.
 
Top