Cruising with a Boeing 747-200

Cruising with a Boeing 747-200

Hello! First, I will introduce myself. My name is Gustavo Carletto and I am the first officer of an Embraer Phenom 100E. Today, I will tell you a story of how I cruised during a flight with a very rare plane.

We had just taken off of São Paulo, Brazil, flying towards the midwest. The flight was scheduled to the flight level 380, which means 38 thousand feet of altitude. However, the weather charts indicated strong winds in the upper levels.

When we cruised the levels going up, we decided to keep the plane at level 320 (32 thousand feet) and go on with the flight. After one hour cruising, in the page of the TCAS (Traffic Collision Avoidance System), it indicated an aircraft approaching 2 thousand feet below us, at level 300 (30 thousand feet). Due to the altitude we were flying at, I figured it was a small plane like ours and that it would be hard to spot it.

Keeping up with the traffic at TCAS, it showed that the plane was on a convergent route, right below us. At around 10 nautical miles, we could already see the aircraft. I promptly grabbed my cell phone and started recording the cruise. When the airplane started to approach, we realized it was a quadrimotor and instantly got excited. It isn’t a very common aircraft to find in Brazilian skies. I quickly recognized it: it was a Boeing 747. I recorded a beautiful video of that moment. When I landed, I posted it on my instagram page (@carlettogus). Suddenly, hundreds of messages appeared in my inbox - airplane dedicated pages, news pages… They were commenting about the passage of that plane. Putting the pieces together, I found out that cruising with the incredible Boeing 747 was extremely rare because it was a 747-200. It’s one of the 20 units that are still flying around the world. It was a private plane from Kyrgyzstan. I can say I was lucky to cross paths with this aircraft.


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