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A Trip on Northwest Airlines

My Trip to Portland and Seattle on Northwest Airlines 

September 15, 2005
My family and I, were flying out to Portland, OR to go to my uncle's wedding. After the wedding, we were planning to go and visit Boeing’s Everett plant which is about a 3 hour drive from Portland. We decided to go with our family's favorite airline, Northwest Airlines. When we booked the tickets on, I was excited to find out that we were flying on an A320, which is an aircraft type I hadn’t flown on for about two years.

Northwest Airlines
Green Bay, Wisconsin (GRB) to Minneapolis/St. Paul, Minnesota (MSP)
Flight: NW1713
Aircraft: Airbus A320-200
Class of service: First (upgraded from economy)
Departs: 6:40AM (Central Daylight Savings Time)
Arrives: 7:41AM (Central Daylight Savings Time)

When we boarded the A320, I said hi to the Northwest gate agent, Mary Jo, who I had met a couple of years ago at Sammy’s Pizza Restaurant in Green Bay. Once boarding the A320, I went up to the cockpit to chat with the pilots before departure. I told our captain, Michael, that I had seen them come in to GRB the night before, because I was practicing touch and go’s in the Cessna 172. I found out that he remembered seeing me and told me that he had to report me in sight to the tower. Once I left the cockpit, Mary Jo told me that there was one open seat in First Class and that I was upgraded. I was thrilled by this!

We were delayed leaving the gate because one of our batteries had an abnormal charge. The ground crew restarted the battery and everything was fine.

Then, we took off and the rest of the flight was normal. While on climb, we did experience some moderate turbulence which for me, was great (I love turbulence). Michael and our First Officer (don’t remember his name) made up some time in the air and we arrived in MSP on time.

Northwest Airlines
Minneapolis/St. Paul, Minnesota (MSP) to Portland, Oregon (PDX)
Flight: NW87
Aircraft: Boeing 757-351
Class of service: Economy
Departs: 9:24AM (Central Daylight Savings Time)
Arrives: 10:59AM (Pacific Daylight Savings Time)

I wasn’t really thrilled about flying on the 757-300 again, but my family and I didn’t really have a choice. This is the only aircraft that flies from MSP to PDX. Don’t get me wrong, of course I love the 757, but I have flown on it so many times now (about 10 times) that I would have really rather flown on a DC-10 (a plane I haven’t flown on for years) or a A330 (a plane I have yet to experience).

The flight was a relatively boring one for me. It didn’t have any turbulence which disappointed me. While on board the aircraft, I purchased the gray NWA snack pack for $3.00 USD. It was well worth the money.

I enjoyed the approach into PDX. We flew over the downtown area which was great for me because I had never been to Portland before. We landed in PDX on time.
September 20, 2005
After going to my uncle’s wedding in Portland, Oregon, my family and I, drove to Seattle, Washington in our Audi A6 rental car. We were planning on touring Boeing’s Everett Tour Center, but unfortunately their machinists were on strike. Instead, we went to the Seattle Museum of Flight. Some of the things we saw were, the first 747-100 (N7470), the old Air Force One, an ex-American 727-200, an ex-USAir 737-200, and my personal favorite, an ex-British Airways Concorde (G-BOAG) icon_biggrin.gif . It was definitely worth seeing! After visiting the Museum of Flight, we visited the Space Needle and took a one-hour cruise around Puget Sound. Afterwards, we went to an Italian restaurant (forgot the name) where I had a great conversation with a cute blond waitress. icon_wink.gif

Northwest Airlines
Seattle/Tacoma, Washington (SEA) to Minneapolis/St. Paul
Flight: NW158
Aircraft: Boeing 757-351
Class of service: Economy
Departs: 9:05AM (Pacific Daylight Savings Time)
Arrives: 2:17PM (Central Daylight Savings Time)

Our hotel was across the street from SEA (made for a great spotting opportunity icon_wink.gif ), so it didn’t take very long to drive there. After we dropped off the rental car at Hertz, we went to the Northwest counter check in. Because we were at the airport before 6:00AM, they only had one person working at the counter. We used the self-service check-in. It was pretty easy to use and didn’t take very long at all.

After check-in, we got on the tram to take us to the S Concourse. We got off and went to Burger King for breakfast. I had a Crossan’which with ham. It was pretty good, but I still prefer McDonald’s breakfast. After we were done eating, we walked over to Gate S17.

We got to board the aircraft early because we are Northwest WorldPerks Platinum Elite members. icon_smile.gif Before we took off, I did a crossword puzzle with my mom.

This flight was a relatively boring one. We were flying in another 757-300 (which I have flown in more than 10 times now). Oh well, at least I got to experience a CRJ for the first time on the MSP-GRB leg. We arrived in MSP about 20 minutes early. Strangely, we never used reverse-thrust on landing. 

NWA Airlink (Pinnacle Airlines)
Minneapolis/St. Paul, Minnesota (MSP) to Green Bay, Wisconsin (GRB)
Flight: NW5671
Aircraft: Bombardier CRJ-200
Registration: N8721B
Class of service: Economy
Departs: 3:06PM (Central Daylight Savings Time)
Arrives: 4:20PM (Central Daylight Savings Time)

I was looking forward to this flight for a long time. This flight would have two firsts for me. This was my first time flying on a CRJ and my first Northwest Airlink flight operated by Pinnacle Airlines.

After getting off of the last flight, we took the long walk from the F Concourse to the A Concourse. While I was in the A Concourse, I saw both NWA Airlink (Mesaba Airlines) RJ-85s painted in the new livery for the first time. When we arrived at Gate A17, I noticed that our CRJ was painted in the old livery. This kind of disappointed me, because I think that the CRJ looks a lot better in the new livery than the old livery.

At about 2:40 boarding commenced. We walked down the short jet-bridge and found our seats. We were sitting in the second-to-last row. We pushed-back and we followed a NWA Airlink (Mesaba Airlines) Saab 340.

The flight wasn’t very long. It took about 1 hour and 10 minutes to fly to Green Bay. Our landing in Green Bay was incredibly smooth. After arriving in GRB, I walked up to the cockpit to chat with the pilots. I met our captain, Vance and our first officer, Matt. They were very nice. They showed me the very modern CRJ cockpit. I think that the CRJ has one of the nicest cockpits out there. It didn’t feel nearly as cramped as the DC-9‘s cockpit.

Once again, I had a great experience flying Northwest. And I had a great experience flying Pinnacle Airlines for the first time. I would recommend them to anyone I know.

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