Is it just me?

lexissima

New member
I really don't mind descent or landing turbulence, and take-off & climb I can usually handle by thinking it's temporary, moving through it, etc. But, man altitude turbulence is what gets me...I start thinking we're stuck in it, possibly for the length of flight, or at least until the hand of the universe swats the plane into a free fall. I am irrational, inconsolable, and panicked--striking little bargains in my head, and trying to play time tricks with myself, eg: if the answer to the trivia Q is Aruba, then it will smooth out in a few minutes.

Once we start to descend, though, I am so relieved that I'm jumping up and down on the inside, and the same bumps felt at altitude don't freak me out anymore. Unless they are severe, which I've experienced a few times, or extreme which i encountered just once.

My question for discussion here is do any of you have this altitude-specific fear of turbulence? As we get closer and closer to the ground, the bumps bother me less and less.

Talk amongst yourselves :)
 

bologna

New member
I am the exact same way! Takeoff bumps and landing bumps don't bother me too much (unless they're really bad), but bumps while cruising is what I hate. However, I was on a flight from San Juan to Chicago that was a little bit bumpy in the middle, and went away, so this has helped me realize that the bumps won't last forever.
 

Smooth Sailing

New member
thought I was the only one

I've bounced around at 5,000 feet and enjoyed the view on approach to NY, DC, Boston, Las Vegas and plenty of other cities while others gripped the armrests. It's the mid-flight ups and downs that drive me crazy.

I also once flew on an RJ that cruised at just 7,000 feet between Denver and Colorado Springs. My co-workers were moaning it was so bumpy, I wasn't bothered a bit and really enjoyed the view of the mountains out the window, some of which had peaks above where we were flying.

The angle of the plane against the horizon might have something to do with it, I don't know.
 

lexissima

New member
good to know i'm not the only one

good to know i'm not the only one

I think the altitude for me is a fear of falling and also irrational fear that we can't just get down to the ground quickly. I wish every plane flew @ 7,000 feet....now, I realize that would be inefficient...
 

daniel_T

New member
Hi, personally I hate all turbulence. The worst for me is turbulence during take off. I hate the feeling of shaking around right when you get off the ground. It FREAKS me out. Landing in turbulence (as long as it's not too bad) is fine with me. I really hate it when your at altitude as you mentioned and it get's bumpy. That's not fun. As long as it's fairly light, then i'm okay, but anything more and I sweat and start to freak out.:eek:

Daniel
 

bologna

New member
I used to be that way... at one point, I was afraid I'd never willingly fly again. But, believe me, the fear goes away a little bit every time you fly. While I still don't like turbulence, I know I can deal with it, and I no longer worry about trips for months in advance; sometimes I don't even worry. This site has also helped me too!
 

tb_neg

Administrator
Staff member
It helps when you fly frequently. When you stop for a while, you learn your fears again. It's not like riding a bike.

And...I hate it the most on takeoff, when the plane is trying to get off the ground.
 

lexissima

New member
i'm loving this conversation

i'm loving this conversation

How often is frequently, TB neg? I fly about five times a year. This phobia has ebbed and flowed...and I guess gotten to where I'm mostly controlled, at least from the outside, no one on a flight would know I was freaking out, unless it gets really bumpy. I flew a ton as a kid and young adult...almost monthly b/c my mom lived across the country and then i went to college across the country and always loved flying. But ten years ago, I was on a prop plane in Florida and we flew about as close to a thunderstorm as I ever want to get--we were the last flight to land in Jacksonville. People on the flight were crying, praying, getting sick--it was exactly like that scene in Almost Famous. Ever since then I just haven't been right. And I will never get on a prop plane again. I've tried lots of remedies and have come to believe that i just have to accept some low-grade anxiety as part of my flying life.

Thanks to everyone for sharing!
 

tb_neg

Administrator
Staff member
At least 3-4 times a year is probably fine. It does not help to not fly for a year or two, and then get back on the bus...plane, that is.

For a while, it was nearly once a month (I was taking flights), and it was fairly easy, although I didn't fly when the maps looked bad, so I got lots of last minute tickets. Fortunately, there was a lot of competition on that route.
 

kingpenguin78

New member
Although not really afraid of turbulence anymore, the turbulence at altitude is indeed what bothers me the most as well...

I think it probably has to do with a few reasons:

- At a lower alititude, I find the dynamics of flight more interesting. I like watching the wings and how the work as well as manouvering that normally occurs during landing and take off. This probably distracts me from most of the bumps.

- At altitude you are generally moving at a higher speed (500mph instead of 250mph or so). You get a different sensation which feels more like vibration instead of undulations that you get at a slower speed (which I don't mind at all).

- At a lower altitude I expect there to be turbulence, so it is not a surprise like it can be at 39,000 feet.

- Time spent on a flight during take-off and landing is very small compared to the rest of the journey.

- Finally, if something were to happen and we went down during take off or landing, I figure crashing then would survivable than falling from altitude. At the least, it would be over faster! :)
 

christy

Lifetime Elite
Hmmm . . . I'm exactly the opposite!

I find turbulence at altitude the easiest to handle, because I figure the pilots have the most "wiggle room" so to speak. Turbulence at takeoff is a little worse, but I figure the plane can climb out of it. The worst for me is turbulence at landing, because the plane is slowing down and the pilots need to make more precision maneuvers.

A very interesting discussion :)
 
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