Sedona Airport (SEZ) in Sedona, Arizona: Where some say it's like landing on an aircraft car...

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Sedona Airport (SEZ) in Sedona, Arizona: Where some say it's like landing on an aircraft carrier.

Posted by Daria Knupp on Jul 5, 2017 10:30 am

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Perched atop a 500-foot mesa, Sedona Airport is surrounded by red sandstone formations that glow when sunlight touches them. The “red rocks” have been seen in numerous western movies, including Johnny Guitar and 3:10 to Yuma. Read more.
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Re: Sedona Airport (SEZ) in Sedona, Arizona: Where some say it's like landing on an aircraft carrier.

Posted by Mike Wilson on Jul 7, 2017 3:24 pm

I was fortunate to vacation in AZ (my boyhood home) early June, the week before the heat wave! I rented a Cessna 172 in Prescott and flew with a CFI to SEZ to check off a bucket list item of landing in Sedona. It was extremely windy but, the landings were relatively uneventful. I say relatively because there was a bit more to it than landing in my flatland homestate of Indiana. It was a good learning experience because I was expecting it to be much more intense. But keeping the speeds nailed, the approach stabilized, and an eye on the glidescope, I learned that a runway is a runway, even if it is surrounded by steep drop-offs. If you EVER get the chance to fly around Sedona, you mustn't miss the opportunity. It is even more beautiful from the air than on the ground. 

Re: Sedona Airport (SEZ) in Sedona, Arizona: Where some say it's like landing on an aircraft carrier.

Posted by Kevin Lippert on Jul 10, 2017 9:01 am

I flew my Experimental Zenith CH750 there from Glendale, here's a video landing KSEZ runway 21.

Re: Sedona Airport (SEZ) in Sedona, Arizona: Where some say it's like landing on an aircraft carrier.

Posted by Jeffrey Mirsepasy on Jul 10, 2017 11:28 am

I found it a nonevent. Catalina (or Oshkosh or Meigs) much more interesting.

Re: Sedona Airport (SEZ) in Sedona, Arizona: Where some say it's like landing on an aircraft carrier.

Posted by Bruce Mccolley on Jul 17, 2017 6:56 am

A couple of notes about KSEZ.  

Density Altitude:  The field elevation is 4,830 feet,  Today's temperature is forecast to be a high of 87 degrees.  That would make the density altitude approximately 7,600 feet.  

Runway Gradient:  The runway has a gradient of 1.8 percent up on runway 3.  Therefor, in combination with the town and rising terrain/cliffs on the north end of the runway and a valley to the south end, most times runway 3 is preferred for landing and runway 21 is preferred for departure.

Runway 3 Approach:  There is a slight hill and then a deep ravine just below the approach end of ruway 3.  This can cause a slight rise/lift, followed by a sudden sink. It's best to anticipate the lift/sink.

Emergency Landing After Takeoff:  There aren't any really good options due to the terrain.  I highly recommend looking over the terrain on Google Earth to better appreciate the terrain.

Good Food:  There is a really good restaurant on the field for an early morning breakfast with a scenic view.

Shopping:  Although I've never done it, I've heard of people walking down into Sedona for shopping.  I would hope it's not as bad as the walk from Mackinac Island airport (KMCD) to the town.  Next time I'll order a carriage for that jaunt.

Deer on the Runway:  It's been known to happen.

Re: Sedona Airport (SEZ) in Sedona, Arizona: Where some say it's like landing on an aircraft carrier.

Posted by J Killian on Jul 17, 2017 12:08 pm

It is the beautiful terrain around Sedona that makes it a great landing spot.  The airport is not significant nor difficult.  The density altitude may be another thing however.  If one is not used to high airports or high density altitude, one should definitely brush up on the requisites for your plane.  As Jeffrey mentioned, I found Catalina a far more interesting airport to fly into.  If one wants to use the analogy of landing on an aircraft carrier, Catalina is far more appropriate.