IFATC At Home: Orange County John Wayne Airport
Welcome to the fourth edition of IFATC At Home! It’s an amazing day that’s full of new places to explore, as all of us at IFATC show you around our home airports. For the first two IFATC At Home days, I focused on San Diego International (KSAN), located south of the chaos in the Los Angeles Metropolitan area. During the previous IFATC At Home, I opened Los Angeles (KLAX) throughout the day in the midst of a weekend road trip. But now, I will give credit to the airport that I call home, and the airport that sparked my love for aviation. With that, I present my airport for Sunday, Orange County John Wayne.
About The Airport
Located a short 20 minute drive from Disneyland, as well as a reasonable 45 minutes from Los Angeles, John Wayne Airport (KSNA), located in Orange County, California, has been an airport for locals, tourists, and much more. With the shortest commercial runway in the United States and unique noise abatement procedures, it is surely one of the most difficult airports to fly at. With views of Orange County, Catalina Island, and many other landmarks on the approach, as well as an abundance of views on the way out, you don’t want to miss out. With flights all across the United States, and a flight to Canada, everyone will surely find a flight that they’ll love.
More information about the airport can be found below.
John Wayne Airport and it’s terminal, consisting of three concourses (A, B, C) handle multiple airlines and their flights to/from all across the United States, including hops up the coast to NorCal, transcontinental flights to the East Coast, and much more. Not to mention there’s multiple flight schools, private jet FBOs, and one of the largest GA presences in the state of California. All of the flights operated in and out of KSNA are listed in the table below, sorted by airline in alphabetical order.
Flights may be affected by the COVID-19 pandemic. All liveries that do not exist in-game are marked with an asterisk (*). All aircraft that do not exist in-game are marked with two asterisks (**).
All Routes Currently Operating
|Alaska||Everett/Paine Field (KPAE)||E175*||2:40|
|Alaska||San Francisco (KSFO)||E175*||0:50|
|Alaska||Santa Rosa (KSTS)||E175*||1:25|
|American||Dallas/Fort Worth (KDFW)||738||2:45|
|Delta||Salt Lake City (KSLC)||A220**||1:40|
|Frontier||Las Vegas (KLAS)||A320||1:00|
|JSX||Las Vegas (KLAS)||E145**||1:00|
|Southwest||Dallas Love (KDAL)||737/738||2:40|
|Southwest||Houston Hobby (KHOU)||737/738||3:05|
|Southwest||Las Vegas (KLAS)||737||1:00|
|Southwest||San Jose (KSJC)||737||0:45|
|United||San Francisco (KSFO)||738/A320/CRJ700/E170||1:00|
Old/New Routes That I Think You Should Try
|Air Canada||Vancouver (CYVR)||A319||3:00||New flight, start date TBD|
|AirTran||Cabo San Lucas (MMSD)||737||2:45||Old route, circa 2012|
|AirTran||Mexico City (MMMX)||737||3:20||Old route, circa 2012|
|AirTran||San Francisco (KSFO)||737||1:00||Old route, circa 2012|
|Alaska||Cabo San Lucas (MMSD)||738||2:45||Old route, circa 2015|
|Alaska||Puerto Vallarta (MMPR)||738||3:10||Old route, circa 2015|
|American||New York (KJFK)||757||5:05||Old route, circa 2003|
|American||St. Louis (KSTL)||757||3:45||Old route, circa 2003|
|Alaska||Oakland (KOAK)||738||0:55||Old route, circa 2006|
|Continental (United)||Kahului (PHOG)||737||5:25||Old route, circa 2010|
|Delta||New York (KJFK)||738||5:05||Flight terminated 5 January 2019|
|Northwest||Minneapolis (KMSP)||A319||3:25||Old route, circa 2003|
|Southwest||Nashville (KBNA)||737||3:35||New route, starts fall 2020|
|US Airways||Pittsburgh (KPIT)||A320||4:50||Old route, circa 2002|
As one of the most unique airports in the United States, KSNA has a multitude of strict procedures that must be followed by real world pilots (and by those who value realism in IF, too). While none of the noise abatement procedures will be enforced, I have made a tutorial that outlines the procedures should you choose to use them. In this section, I will also talk about the runway usage, taxiways, and other information you need to know before Sunday.
1. The Famous Noise Abatement Takeoff
With a short runway, angry residents below, and noise meters all over the city of Newport Beach, executing a takeoff at SNA is extremely difficult and requires maximum precision. Starting with a short field takeoff using up to 95-97% throttle (depending on aircraft weight), your aircraft will lift off the runway to a steep climb of 20-25 degrees (compared to 10-15 at normal airports). Before you know it, at 800 feet, your engines will throttle down, the nose of your aircraft will point down, and you’ll feel weightless. While this is happening, you’ll make a slight turn left (to a heading of 175-185) to avoid the residential neighborhoods and rich people (after all, they’ll get mad at you if you don’t). As you exit the city and start flying over water, you can breathe normally and continue flying your SID. Below, I’ve linked an example that I recorded on how to properly execute the KSNA 20R takeoff.
2. Runway Usage
At KSNA, the 20s are almost always used, due to the fact that the ocean pushes winds inland, therefore giving the headwind that as a result, favors the 20s. 20L is the GA runway and is not to be used by any jet aircraft. This also includes the TBM. All commercial aircraft will use 20R unless winds do decide to favor the 02s (highly unlikely). Please keep in mind the size restrictions (more information below). Pattern work will be allowed throughout the day, with 20L traffic making left patterns, and 20R traffic making right patterns.
3. Size Restrictions
Due to KSNA’s short runway, the maximum aircraft size that will be the 757 and 767 (Note: other class D aircraft, including the MD-11/DC-10 will be denied). Inbound aircraft will be told to divert to a suitable airport (options include KLGB and KLAX), and aircraft on the ground will be told to despawn and spawn in a suitable aircraft or spawn at a different airport. Please note that warnings will be given, and failure to follow instructions after warning may lead to report.
4. Where Do I Park?
The terminal is located to the left of 20L, and it extends just past the end of runway 20L. Just beyond that are a few general aviation spots and a handful of FBOs. However, the flight school and the majority of the GA spots/FBOs are located to the right of 20R.
SIDs and STARs will not be required throughout the day unless an approach controller controlling the airport specifies. Below, I’ve included a list of recommended procedures based on your needs.
Recommended SIDs: CHANL3 (North), FINZZ2 (East), HHERO3 (North), IRV5 (North, East), MUSEL8 (East), PIGGN2 (South, East), STAYY3 (South, East)
Recommended STARs: DSNEE4 (East), KAYOH7 (East), ROOBY3 (East), OHSEA2 (North), TANDY5 (North), TILLT2 (North)
Since it’s not Father’s Day, Mother’s Day, or road trip weekend, I will try to be open all day. However, I expect to be open the most between the hours of 1500Z and 0400Z. With that being said, I do not have any set times at the moment, and I will adjust this thread as necessary when I do make plans.