Legacy Destination of the Week 185: ASH Jackson Hole Airport (KJAC) 28 May 2023 to 4 June 2023

Our Destination of the Week challenge features a new destination airport on a weekly basis. Every week we get to fly to a remote or a big commercial airport, depending on the monthly theme. Although there are multiple airports in the theme, each one is a separate destination and not linked in any way other than the common theme.

The Rules:

1. Depart in the aircraft of your choice from the airport of your choice, anywhere in the world (as long as you respect maximum flight hours). Consider this a new "cold start" flight.
2. Fly to the Destination of the Week airport. 
3. On completion of the flight, go to the PIREP page and file your flight as a DOTW mission. There is no flight tracking software involved. This is purely a fun exercise. Enjoy!

Welcome to our Legacy Destinations of the Week!

As our president, Stijn, announced in our March 2020 Newsletter our Destination of the Week officially comes to a close after 500 weeks of running. This means that we are now in DOTW ReRun mode. The original thought was to start with the very first DOTW, HUEN, however we had to consider DOTW theme timing. Some DOTW's are seasonal or calendar themed while others are holiday themed.

I want to thank Stijn for his DOTW creative efforts. The DOTW series has been a masterful effort on his part and unarguably one of our most successful programs here at Platinum Airways.

Stijn, if you live to be 100 years old, that will be 10% of your life dedicated to Platinum Airways. We can never thank you enough!


Hello all and welcome to the fourth part of our Ash Destination of the Week series. The past three weeks, we visited airports that were affected by volcanic activity. We conclude this series with two DOTW's that focus on what might happen. This week, we'll be visiting the site with the largest supervolcano on land.


The Yellowstone Caldera is the volcanic caldera and supervolcano located in Yellowstone National Park in the United States, sometimes referred to as the Yellowstone Supervolcano. The loosely defined term supervolcano has been used to describe volcanic fields that produce exceptionally large volcanic eruptions. The Yellowstone Supervolcano is located in the northwest corner of Wyoming, in which the vast majority of the park is contained. The major features of the caldera measure about 34 by 45 miles (55 by 72 km). It formed during the last of three supereruptions over the past 2.1 million years. First came the Huckleberry Ridge eruption 2.1 million years ago, which created the Island Park Caldera and the Huckleberry Ridge Tuff. Next came the Mesa Falls eruption 1.3 million years ago, which created the Henry's Fork Caldera and the Mesa Falls Tuff. Finally came the Lava Creek eruption 640,000 years ago, which created the Yellowstone Caldera and the Lava Creek Tuff.


The volcanic eruptions, as well as the continuing geothermal activity, are a result of a great cove of magma located below the caldera's surface. The magma in this cove contains gases that are kept dissolved only by the immense pressure that the magma is under. If the pressure is released to a sufficient degree by some geological shift, then some of the gases bubble out and cause the magma to expand. This can cause a runaway reaction. If the expansion results in further relief of pressure, for example, by blowing crust material off the top of the chamber, the result is a very large gas explosion.


According to the analysis of earthquake data in 2013, the magma chamber is 80 km (50 mi) long and 20 km (12 mi) wide, and is shaped like 4,000 km3 (960 cu mi) underground mass, of which 6–8% is filled with molten rock. This is about 2.5 times bigger than scientists had previously imagined it to be, but the proportion of melt is thought to be much too low to allow a supereruption. However, the last full-scale eruption of the Yellowstone Supervolcano, the Lava Creek eruption which happened nearly 640,000 years ago, ejected approximately 240 cubic miles (1,000 km3) of rock, dust and volcanic ash into the sky. 

Geologists are closely monitoring the rise and fall of the Yellowstone Plateau, which measures on average 0.6 inches (1.5 cm) yearly, as an indication of changes in magma chamber pressure. The US Geological Survey, University of Utah and National Park Service scientists with the Yellowstone Volcano Observatory maintain that they "see no evidence that another such cataclysmic eruption will occur at Yellowstone in the foreseeable future. Recurrence intervals of these events are neither regular nor predictable."

After a long period of dormancy, Modern Pinatubo was born in the cataclysmic and the most explosive eruption of Pinatubo around 35,000 years ago. The eruption, which was estimated to be five times larger than the 1991 eruption, deposited pyroclastic flow material up to 100 metres (330 ft) thick on all sides of the mountain. The total volume of pyroclastic flows deposited around the volcano may have been up to 25 km³ (6.0 cu mi), but the total volume of volcanic material ejected during the eruption is unknown. The removal of this amount of material from the underlying magma chamber led to the formation of the Tayawan caldera.

Studies and analysis may indicate that the greater hazard comes from hydrothermal activity which occurs independently of volcanic activity. Over 20 large craters have been produced in the past 14,000 years, resulting in such features as Mary Bay, Turbid Lake, and Indian Pond which was created in an eruption about 1300 BC. In a 2003 report, USGS researchers proposed that an earthquake may have displaced more than 77 million cubic feet (2,200,000 m3) (576,000,000 US gallons) of water in Yellowstone Lake, creating colossal waves that unsealed a capped geothermal system leading into the hydrothermal explosion that formed Mary Bay.


Further research shows that earthquakes from great distances do reach and have effects upon the activities at Yellowstone, such as the 1992 7.3 magnitude Landers earthquake in California’s Mojave Desert that triggered a swarm of quakes from more than 800 miles (1,300 km) away and the 2002 7.9 magnitude Denali fault earthquake 2,000 miles (3,200 km) away in Alaska that altered the activity of many geysers and hot springs for several months afterward.


The main access airport to Yellowstone is Jackson Hole Airport (KJAC), seven miles (11 km) north of Jackson, in Teton County, Wyoming. It is the largest airport in Wyoming and is owned by the Jackson Hole Airport Board. It is the only commercial airport in the United States inside a national park, in this case Grand Teton. A large fraction of air travellers to Grand Teton National Park or nearby Yellowstone National Park and western Wyoming go through the airport. The airport once had an unusual terminal resembling a pioneer log cabin which blended with the surroundings. A major terminal expansion was done in 2009–10. The new design still blends with the unique surroundings of the national park and Jackson Hole preservation area. The entrance is a wood walkway to the terminal building. The airport has 9 gates.

The airport was created in the 1930s as the best place to put an airport in Teton County. The airport was declared a national monument in 1943, and merged with Grand Teton National Park in 1950. The runway was extended to its current length in 1959. In the 1960s and 1970s a runway extension to 8,000 feet (2,400 m) to allow jets was considered; the National Park Service successfully opposed it. In the late 1970s, jets began using the existing runway. The area is noise sensitive and the airport allows no jets louder than stage III.

The largest aircraft seen regularly is the Boeing 757-200. American Airlines has seasonal daily 757s to Dallas and Chicago; United Airlines operates it several times daily to Denver during the summer and started new B757 nonstops several times a week to Houston in 2012. Delta Air Lines has B757 flights of various frequencies to its hubs at Salt Lake City and Atlanta. Other jetliners at Jackson Hole include the Airbus A319 and A320 and the Canadair CRJ-700 regional jet.

KJAC applies specific landing instructions, as there have been several runway overruns and other excursions. This is no luxury, as KJAC's elevation is over 6,400 ft (almost 2,000 m). Particularly at risk is a landing on RWY19, as it is often downwind and always downhill.


The airport's hompage is currently down.

KJAC has one runway:
01/19 6,300ft 1,920m

Live flight tracking is available from Flightaware.

KJAC charts are available here.

Freeware scenery for FS9 can be found here.

Freeware scenery for FSX can be found here and here.

Freeware scenery for MSFS 2020 could not be found.

Freeware scenery for P3D v1 through v4 could not be found.

Freeware scenery for P3Dv5 could not be found.

Freeware scenery for X-Plane could not be found.

Freeware scenery for X-Plane 10 can be found here.

 Landing at Jackson Hole Citation VII


RWY19 overrun American Airlines cabin"


Citation VII depart flightdeck RWY19





  • Destination of the Week

    Hello and welcome to our third Four Women DOTW event. This week takes us to an airport that was named in honour of Queen Alia, the third spouse to Jordan King Hussein, himself a fully qualified pilot. A daughter of Baha ud-Din Toukan (or Touqan), former Jordanian ambassador to the United Kingdom, Italy, Turkey and Egypt, Alia Baha Ad-Din Touqanwas born in Cairo, Egypt in December 1948. Her father was a Palestinian from Nablus, who had settled in Salt, near Amman. He served King Abdullah I, helped write the Jordanian Constitution and was Jordan's first Ambassador to the United Nations.

    She spent most of her childhood years travelling with her parents during her father’s career in Jordan’s diplomatic corps: she lived in Egypt, Turkey, London, the United States and Rome. She attended Church School in London with her younger brothers, Alaa and Abdullah. She was educated at the Rome Center of Liberal Arts of Loyola University Chicago. She studied political science with a minor in social psychology, and public relations at Hunter College in New York. She was interested in sports and writing, and she wished to be a diplomat. In 1971, she moved to Jordan, where she worked for Royal Jordanian. She was asked by King Hussein bin Talal to oversee the preparations for the first International Water Skiing Festival held in Aqaba in September 1972. They had two children: Princess Haya and Prince Ali, and they also adopted Abir, a 5-year-old Palestinian girl whose mother had been killed by a plane crash at a refugee camp near the Amman airport.

    Queen Alia founded the Office of the Queen of Jordan and gave it an active and public role. The active role she took in Jordan has been emulated by her successors, Queen Noor and Queen Rania. She financed social development projects, placing particular emphasis on women and children. She often made surprise visits to hospitals and national institutions, aiming to raise service standards and help people to help themselves. In her drive to ensure that children from impoverished backgrounds received their right to education, she fostered close ties with schools such as the Schneller School for Orphans, which took many of the street children that Queen Alia sent there. Her commitment to improving social services continued throughout her lifetime and was still pursued in her name after her death, when King Hussein ensured the continuation of the many educational scholarships given in her honour.

    Queen Alia International Airport (OJAI) is Jordan's largest airport and is located in Zizya 30 kilometres (20 mi) south of the capital city, Amman. The airport is home to the country's national flag carrier, Royal Jordanian Airlines, and serves as a major hub for Jordan Aviation, Petra Airlines, Royal Falcon, and Royal Wings. A state-of-the-art new terminal was inaugurated in March 2013 to replace the airport's older two passenger terminals and one cargo terminal. The three original terminals were made obsolete once the new terminal officially began operations.

    Queen Alia International Airport (QAIA) was built in 1983 in response to the growing airport traffic needs that Amman Civil Airport could not accommodate. At the time, passenger traffic was increasing above the international average, recording 25–30% growth per annum and placing considerable pressure on airport facilities despite continuous expansion and development. In 1981, the number of arriving, departing, and transit passengers exceeded 2.3 million, while cargo traffic reached 62,000 tons and aircraft traffic topped 27,000 movements.

    The Jordanian Ministry of Transport undertook to build a new international airport with sufficient capacity to cope with demand in the foreseeable future. Passenger facilities were designed to serve 3.5 million passengers per annum. QAIA has since grown to become the kingdom's primary international gateway and a stop-over for international airlines in the Middle East. By 2012, QAIA was serving on average more than 6 million passengers annually and 40 airlines from around the world.

    In 2007 Jordan selected Airport International Group (AIG) through an open tender to operate, rehabilitate and manage QAIA under a 25-year concession agreement. In response to the continual surge in passenger traffic at the time, AIG was also placed in charge of constructing a new terminal, one which not only would expand the airport's then insufficient annual capacity of 3.5 million passengers, but that would also introduce a "unique travel experience" to help advance QAIA's position as a niche transit hub in the region. AIG is a Jordanian company. 

    Accordingly, AIG invested an estimated USD 750 million in the construction of the new terminal. Spanning over 103,000 square meters, the spacious building has improved infrastructure and cutting-edge facilities. Built in accordance with international standards, the new terminal has been installed with the latest technologies and automation systems that maximize efficiency, security, and service quality. The new terminal is also equipped to accommodate rising annual passenger traffic, taking the original airport capacity from 3.5 million passengers per year to 7 million. 

    In January 2014, AIG launched the second phase of QAIA's expansion that will raise QAIA's annual passenger traffic capacity to up to 12 million, subsequently supporting the Jordan's national tourism strategy goals to serve as a regional transit hub for leisure and business travel. The aims to boost its capacity to 16 million passengers annually by the end of the concession time frame in 2032.

    QAIA's new design was created by architects Foster + Partners. It blends local heritage with contemporary architecture keeping a balance between aesthetics and practical functionality. Its main characteristic is the roof that was inspired by Bedouin tents and is composed of 127 concrete domes, each weighing up to 600 metric tonnes.

    The airport has two lounges, one operated by Royal Jordanian for business and first class passengers, and the other exclusively run by telecom operator Zain Jordan for its VIP customers.

    OJAI has two runways:
    08R/26L, 12,008 ft, 3,660 m
    08L/26R, 12,008 ft, 3,660 m

    Charts are available for download hereunder. A (large) scenery file for FS2004 and FSX is available from Vatsim Jordan's website. Unfortunately, we could not find an X-Plane addon scenery.

    Charts FS9 FSX X-Plane

    Reminder to our pilots: all (multi-leg) flights between our five hubs may be filed as DOTW until 15 June 2015 - the fifth anniversary of our website going live. 

    And now our regular video selection. We'll start with an A320 approaching RWY26L.


    The same approach, also filmed in an Airbus flightdeck, but at sunset has some amazing views. The "retard" command Airbus gives to commanding officers when they should flare will always sound peculiar...



    Our final video on OJAI is (again) an A320 about to take off from RWY26L. 

    That's all for this week. Next week, we'll have our annual Santa flights in and out of Rovaniemi (EFRO). So get your sleigh in order, because we're counting down to Christmas. See you then.
    Article Count: