We are a commune of inquiring, skeptical, politically centrist, capitalist, anglophile, traditionalist New England Yankee humans, humanoids, and animals with many interests beyond and above politics. Each of us has had a high-school education (or GED), but all had ADD so didn't pay attention very well, especially the dogs. Each one of us does "try my best to be just like I am," and none of us enjoys working for others, including for Maggie, from whom we receive neither a nickel nor a dime. Freedom from nags, cranks, government, do-gooders, control-freaks and idiots is all that we ask for.
In/out of Quito many times, always in a DC-6 and always daytime VFR. I swear, I don't remember that approach being over the city, but it was 60 years ago and the old memory's getting dim. Quito's the place to buy cheap those large, carved wood plaques of rural life in the Andes, usually involving an old man and a donkey. One wall of our dining room still has a bunch of them, despite having given most of them away over the years. They look like such bargains in those little stalls in and around the terminal.
the scenery is spectacular. Even better views can be seen when arriving at the new Quitp airport. We fly frequently from southern ecuador to Quito and often have the pleasure of overflying one of the worlds' stratovolcano, fantastic viewsas well. it was good to hear that the pilots enjoy that airport.
Ojh, and those wooden plaques are no longer to be found.
Exciting as this is, I don't think it beats landing at the Castlegar airport (British Columbia, Canada). Agreed the planes are not nearly so large as this one, but the approach is "interesting". Knew geologists who strongly affirmed they could do far too detailed geological mapping of the surrounding mountains as they came in for a landing.
What exactly constitutes a "difficult" approach?
- Airfield is ICAO certified
- Approaches are ICAO certified
- Pilots are aircrew certified
- Plane is airworthy
All of these certifications take risk and history into account. If anything was going to induce an unacceptable level of risk into the air traffic control system, planes would not be allowed to fly into Quito.
Compared to Ezeiza (Buenos Aires), Quito is difficult. Compared to Toncontin (Tegucigalpa), Quito is a piece of cake. You're right about certifications, airworthiness etc. as a baseline, but within "acceptable risk" airports, there are varying degrees of difficulty and risk. Basically a higher risk, hence more difficult approach requires fewer and smaller flight crew errors, so higher risk airports have additional experience requirements such as total flying hours, simulator training on the approach, flying the approach under supervision of someone who has flown it before... (Yeah, flight crews make mistakes all the time, but are constantly correcting them so it all washes out at touchdown, and no one but the flight crew ever knows unless they live to nearly 90 and start blabbing).
It is the old Quito Central Mariscal Sucre airport shown -- if one clicks through to youtube and then to the website that originated the video, this information is included in the description. This was, they say, among the last flights into the old airport, which closed in February 2013