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I find it amusing that Fred, who opposes every government spending plan around, is perfectly content to support spending millions of "OPM" on a bypass. Could it be because his company would stand to make a lot of money on such a project?
How many mechanics does it take to change a light bulb? Apparently, too many for Denver and United... 10pm flight tonight delayed for mechanical. Also, no flight attendant. THIS is why flying out of HDN is such a bust.
Thanks for the clarifications, Scott. My experience has been so bad, I guess I assumed the worst :-)
Scott, that's a fair question. The average on-time percentage for US airlines appears to hover around 80%. According to a recent article in the Pilot, of 182 flights in and out of YVRA between Jan 1 and Feb 11, 65% were on time; of the 82 cancelled or delayed flights, 52 were due to mechanical or crew problems. So, excluding the flights delayed by weather, which no one can control (and it's been a bad winter--many of those cancellations were due to weather in OTHER places), about 1/3 of flights in/out of YVRA were cancelled due to mechanical/crew. That, to me, is simply unacceptable. In an ideal world, the number should be zero. In the real world, I might accept 10%, with full refunds given for all cancelled flights. But the other issue, of course, is that if one is flying out of DIA and a flight is cancelled or severely delayed, there are other options--later flights, other airlines--so it is almost always possible to make it to your destination the same day (though sometimes very very late at night). That's not something HDN can match, and I don't expect it to--but it does but even more of a burden on the airlines to fly in and out of that airport on time and as planned.
Most business travelers don't care about shopping or visiting family in Denver. They want to get to their meeting and get home. Most of my business trip--a dozen or so per year--are 36 hours long; if I am delayed until the next day, I miss the reason for going. Given that so many flights in and out of HDN are cancelled, I simply cannot take the risk, although I would much prefer to fly out of there, and I don't care about the relatively minor difference in cost (minor for one person traveling on business; when I travel with a family of 5, cost does matter).
What amazes me is that no one at the airlines, the airport or the LMD seems to care that something like 50% of all flights between HDN and DEN are cancelled, and almost all those are due to mechanical or lack of crew (according to a Pilot article last month). That's just an insane way to operate a business. And you'd think there would at least be a claw-back clause in the contract that allow us to get our subsidies back for any flight cancelled for any reason other than weather.
Great job, Grant! CYC is a terrific program, and you are doing a terrific job. Keep up the good work!
A HUGE thank you to Sally and Corrine for getting this team together, and for putting in the early mornings to help these kids learn, create and succeed!!
The difference in price matters for personal travel, especially for families, when it is multiplied by 3, 4 or 5. That's real money. But as the article mentions, business travelers would generally not mind the additional cost; $200 is reasonable for the time savings--a person can work in the airport and on the plane but not during the 3 1/2 hour drive to DIA. The reason I no longer fly out of HDN even for business is because of unreliability. I cannot count on the planes out of and into Hayden actually landing and taking off, and that has nothing to do with the weather. Since it matters that I make it to my meetings on time and get home on schedule after a long trip away from my kids, it's just better to drive. That's the issue the airport, airlines and other powers that be should be most concerned with.
Can the Pilot look into why the ski area changed its focus from Vagabond to Heavenly Daze for early season? As recently as a couple of years ago, the ski area focused its snowmaking on Vagabond and Eagle's Nest, opening Thunderhead and almost always having skiing from the Gondola building down. Then, last year, they focused on the Daze and didn't open Thunderhead for two weeks. This seems a bit nuts to me, since the Glaze is hardly beginner-friendly and is harder to get good coverage on; they can't even get it covered well enough to open it on opening day in a year that has seen the wettest fall on record, and plenty of cold nights. Plus, having Thunderhead open takes pressure off the gondola. What's up?
Scott, that seems far fetched; plenty of people like Bloomberg's and Gates' policies, programs and ideas. What strikes me as nuts is the fact that out of state residents can legally contribute to state elections. We see Bloomberg and Gates doing it here, and the Koch brothers doing it on the other side of the aisle. Regardless of where one comes down on the issues in Citizens United (is donating to elections campaigns free speech?), it's hard to see how someone who lives in NY should have any right to influence elections in CO...
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