Chief's 747 at CHO? No.

new-airforcetwoA Hook reader living in the Charlottesville-Albemarle Airport flight path on Gentry Lane thought he saw a 747 coming over Wednesday morning September 2– with a light blue paint scheme like Air Force One,

the ride of the President. However, CHO director Barbara Hutchinson explains it was just a 757 out of Andrews Air Force Base doing touch and gos.

"They do them all the time," says Hutchinson, noting that a C-130 did the same thing yesterday. "Pilots are required to do them from time to time to keep their license."

Hutchinson didn't offer any more info about the vehicle, but a reporter couldn't help but notice that the Vice President's ride, Air Force Two (depicted here) is a 757...

Read more on: air force onecho


By the way CHO Pilot, what's the minimum runway length for a 747 to take off? I know it varies for different reasons, but say using Charlottesville for example?

ken = moran

This 757 is capable of landing and departing CHO, It has on occasion spent the night here. As for the call sign of Air Force One or Two certain executive have to be on board to use them. The Special Air Wing of the Air Force not the FAA,that fly these aircraft come here to practice because it is convenient to Andrews and they often fly to SHD and RIC. So it is really no big deal. P.S. A 747 could land at CHO but would never be able to depart, it would have to be dismantled and trucked out of CHO.

I seen the c-130 that was cool.

Air Force One/Air Force Two are call signs, not specific aircraft. So while the aircraft in question may be called Air Force Two on occasion, if the VP is not on board, then it is just another 757 in fancy livery.

quote: "A 747 could land at CHO but would never be able to depart, it would have to be dismantled and trucked out of CHO.

Now that's an interesting fact right there! Thanks!

I don't think the practice is as simple as barbara Hurchinson wants to make it sound. I have been told (yeah, hearsay) that this "practice" is done in case of a national emergency. At any time the guys at the top of the food chain could need to be flown out of the capital area on very short notice. The pilots need practice in setting such a large aircraft down on a relatively short landing strip. And if anybody knows the relevance of Culpeper, they simply don't have a landing field capable of accepting large aircraft such as a 757 or 747.

This is done all the time, as the story quotes. Touch and goes also go on and on, not just two passes. Exciting to see it banking around then coming in before throttling up back off, must be over RIC in about 20 minutes.

Take it from a retired USAF Air Traffic Controller, this is nothing abnormal or exiting. The shortest runway for the USAF version of the Boeing 757 (C-32 pictured above) is 5000 feet. CHO has a runway of 6001 feet; plenty of room for this aircraft. Pilot Mom is absolutely correct when she says this is only about pilot curreny training and has nothing to do with evacuation from DC as GSOE suggested. Pilots just pick some where close and not too busy to perform their training. Additionally, no matter what aircraft the president is abord, it becomes either "Air Force One", "Marine One" etc, etc. The Airforce fleet is stationed at Andrews AFB and the Marine fleet is stationed accross the Potomac from Regan National Airport, on the Navy side of Bolling AFB. Just thought I'd share.

This happens every year. I live close to the airport and have seen aircraft that look like the one above fly over every summer.

CHO Pilot, from what I've heard they are in process of extending the runway, but in stall mode for lack of money for the dirt. Better get Bob Fenwick out there to get this dredging operation underway and extend the runway at the same time. We need someone with his can do attitude in local government to "ksb" and get these bureacrats moving --

I don't think it's exciting at all, let Biden fly coach like the rest of us.

Don't jets like this need a longer runway than the one at CHO, which has been in the planning stages for decades ? All they need apparently is tens of millions of dollars for dirt --ala, what about the dirt at the bottom of the Reservoir--2 miles away --maybe we could give it to them.

OK, thanks!

I saw an Airbus A380 land at CHO not long ago. About 3 million people got off and the plane took off. Then the alarm clock went off and woke me up! :)

I'm not sure of the specific numbers, but I can tell you that CHO is a few thousand feet short. CHO is now 6001'long and will be extended 800' more and is in that process now.

The runway length required to land an aircraft depends on variables such as pay load, remaining fuel weight, air temperature and field elevation. It also depends on if the engines are still in service. With dead engines the aircraft would have no reverse thrust to call upon.

If you say it can be done, so be it. But I think it would take an extremely good pilot to totally land a 747 or 757 to a complete stop at the Charlottesville airport. And I don't want to be on any model of the 747 or 757 when they attempt a landing at Chalottesville. :)

This blue and white 757 belongs to the FAA. It stops by CHO about once a month or so to check out the instrument landing systems

Well, I imagine that the pilots flying the planes kept ready for the POTUS and the VEEP are VERY GOOD PILOTS. I think its a bit small, but hey, if he says it can be done, it probably can. I can also always ask my Uncle was Big Chief Honcho of the FAA in a past Administration.

Besides, with Rivanna Station, it shouldn't be a surprise for there to be more activity at the airport.