One of the pleasant parts of the COVID pandemic numbers dropping around the world is airlines beginning new routes and resuming old ones. Yesterday, temperatures in Dallas skipped Springtime and went right to Summer. As I stood in the airfield at DFW Airport, I wondered if the heat was from the origin of the flight I was there to see.
It was literally a flight from HEL. Helsinki, Finland, more specifically.
Finnair was coming to land at DFW Airport to begin their nonstop route between the Finnish capital and north Texas. As a fan of the Nordic region and airline competition, little could make me happier, except for having a close-up view of the first landing!
But first, Air France
While I was on my way to the airport, I recalled that Air France would be resuming its service to DFW as well, and that flight was in fact coming in to land just a little before the Helsinki flight. I went to my trusty spot at Founder’s Plaza, where there was quite a crowd to enjoy the beautiful weather and beautiful planes!
Eventually, we saw it in the distance. I joked on Instagram that it was the most excitement about the arrival of the French since Yorktown in 1781, but people were legitimately excited! It was a sign of economic recovery for an industry hammered by the pandemic.
After I saw this image I moved my tripod just a bit to get people’s heads out of the way as the Air France 777 calmly and croissantly came in for a smooth landing.
As it made its way to its gate, I checked in at DFW Airport to clear security and head down to the airfield for a bit of a better view for the next landing.
It was time for the first flight from HEL to arrive! We took up a position along the same sight line as from Founder’s Plaza, just from much closer. There’s nothing quite like riding around in an airport operations vehicle for an avgeek like me, so many planes out and about!
While we sat there and roasted from the heat coming off the concrete around us, we saw a big plane off in the distance. It turned out to be the Finnair A350!
The A350 is one of the sleekest and most elegant planes out there, and also incredibly quiet! It seemingly didn’t make a sound as it approached the runway.
I love the wingtips of the A350, and the Finnair logo fit perfectly!
The jet gracefully aligned itself over the runway markers, which I caught in a reflection on the belly of the jet!
The A350 landed smoothly, almost unaware of the history it was making.
Back to the gate for a closer look
As the Finnair A350 made its way to the gate, complete with a celebratory shower from DFW Airport fire trucks, we followed along for a closer look, not just at Finnair but the beautiful Air France 777.
I love getting up close with jets, the scale of everything is just so vast!
I had to get some close up shots of the engine fan blades, because obviously.
And, just for good measure, a shot of both tails at their respective gates!
BONUS QANTAS LANDING
Qantas recently resumed its nonstop service between Sydney and DFW. Today they would be bringing a special livery, their Qantas 100 livery. The folks at DFW were nice enough to let me venture back out to see the arrival of the special 787.
I made a reel on Instagram with some video footage I got from the landing, you can see the wing flex relax once the aircraft slows down, I thought it was really cool!
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Whew, what a wonderful day!
There’s little better than spending time with aviation friends and getting some close-up views of some incredible jets. The only thing better than looking at jets is flying in them, though, so maybe it’s time for another trip, what do you think?
Have you flown Finnair? What did you think?