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Better side of plane to see the Grand Canyon?

Better side of plane to see the Grand Canyon?

Jul 24th, 2009, 04:53 PM
Original Poster
Join Date: May 2005
Posts: 5,626
Better side of plane to see the Grand Canyon?

This question was asked elsewhere by a friend and I thought she might get better advice over here;

I realize this is kind of last minute, but it just occurred to me that it would really be neat to be able to see the Grand Canyon from the air as I fly into Las Vegas tomorrow afternoon.

I'll be flying on Southwest, so no reserved seats. I looked on their interactive route map page. I'll be taking a direct flight from Philly to Vegas.

It's a longshot, but does anyone have any experience or knowledge about which side of the plane would be best for viewing? Facing the front of the plane, I'm thinking left side, but my brother seems to think right.

Thoughts or input, anyone?

If anyone can help her, thank you.
socaltraveler is offline  
Jul 24th, 2009, 10:42 PM
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 15,112
Sit on the right side. I took a look at a couple of the USAirways PHL-LAS nonstops over the last few days at flightaware. The flight paths go south of GC and turn a bit northwest coming into Las Vegas, and they would be landing from the east.
mrwunrfl is offline  
Jul 25th, 2009, 03:00 PM
Join Date: May 2005
Posts: 2,121
It's a bit late now, perhaps, but the two most common arrivals into KLAS pass on opposite sides of the canyon. The arrival usually flown by Southwest places the canyon on the left side of the aircraft. Some other airlines take the other arrival, which puts the canyon on the right side of the aircraft (actually almost beneath the aircraft). If you are flying Southwest, I'd guess that sitting on the left is a better bet than sitting on the right.
AnthonyGA is offline  
Jul 25th, 2009, 03:05 PM
Join Date: Mar 2005
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Moot point now as the SWA flight is already enroute, but I disagree. I took data from the same SWA flight from last Saturday as well as a different SWA flight this am. Both flew about 25-30mi NORTH of GC, so left side would have been better.

The USAir flight from this morning took an odd southerly route, near Atlanta before heading west. The SWA flight currently enroute is taking the northerly route. It's currently just north of Indianapolis.

The reality is it's a crap shoot. Routes change due to weather from day to day, and am to pm so you can't always bet on a route.
J62 is offline  
Jul 25th, 2009, 03:17 PM
Join Date: May 2005
Posts: 2,121
You and I are saying the same thing: sit on the left for a Southwest flight.

The actual route of the flight can change if weather absolutely requires it, and the filed route may occasionally vary if there are significant issues along the way, but the arrivals are more static. GRNPA1, which seems to be Southwest's preference, passes north of the Grand Canyon. TYSSN2, which some other flights use (including that USAir flight), passes slightly south of the canyon.

I'll agree that it can be a bit of a crap shoot. I guess that is only fitting for a trip to Las Vegas.
AnthonyGA is offline  

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