Normal Approach Sequence
This first photo is on about a mile final from the runway. Approach to runway
32 at Lawrence MA (LWM) is over a lake... Airspeed at this point is about 50
The next photo shows us on about 1/4 mile final, airspeed is down to about
35 knots at this point. Notice that the numbers of the runway are in about
the same place as on the previous picture (only bigger). This says the
pilot is holding a steady approach angle. The little bit it dropped is
due to the nose being slightly higher because we are now in a slight
Another interesting thing in both this pictures is that you can tell the pilot
is doing a good job of holding centerline, because if you extend the white
dashed centerline down to the bottom of the picture, it seems to go directly
through your body.
This picture shows us on short final. Airspeed about 25 knots. Again, the
runway numbers have not moved up or down substantially because the pilot
is holding the approach angle constant. You can see where the old "32" was
painted on the runway, and that there is now a big yellow arrow pointing
to the new numbers. This is a displaced threshold, meaning you are
supposed to land past the yellow arrow and white "^" arrows. This is done
to runways for a number of reasons, but if you look back in the previous
picture you can see that there is a building with wires and lamp posts
just before the end of the runway. The runway has been displaced to have
the airplanes higher as they cross those obstacles.
Here we are, hovering over the numbers.
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