I live in a small city in North-Central Alberta. Many times a day, I see several large, trans oceanic capable jets overhead (747, DC10, A340s). Is there a website that can tell me where they are going? I know of sites like this but I have to know the flt number and such. I was hoping for a website with an overhead view of North America and active flights, and I could zoom into my area and it would give me flt numbers and such.
This won’t help you specifically but my general guess is that they are flights from some American city to either East Asia or Northern Europe. The great circle routes will take them very far north even if both the target and destination cities are at lower lattitudes.
A topic that fascinates me…I used my Great Circle Mapper (See link below-I hope it works) and found that flights from Seattle (SEA) and Vancouver (YVR) that are destined for Europe may pass over your neck of the woods.
Also, Northwest Airlines has a lot planes leaving from Detroit that fly to Asia. They fly a lot of MD-11s (although I don’t know if they can make it that far) and 747s. On the Map it looks like they fly east of you, but due to differnt winds and such, the planes may take a route over your location. United’s Asian departures from Chicago may also do the same thing.
Flights from Toronto going to Asia are good possibilty as well.
I know Fed-Ex has a lot of MD-11s in Anchorage. It looks like they pass over you on routes between there and continental US cities.
Check out this Star Alliance screensaver link (http://www.staralliance.com/star_alliance/star/frame/main_10.html). It’s may give you some idea of what’s happening. It is the coolest screensaver ever. Star Allaince does not represent all airlines, but it may help you.
Type in the 3-letter airport codes and the map will show the route. Use NRT for Tokyo and HKG for Hong Kong and FRA for Frankfurt and DTW for Detroit and ANC for Alaska. Chicago=ORD.
Recently I came across a program that displayed the locations of every aircraft being tracked by ATC over the United States - they showed up as little dots. You could click a dot, and you’d get speed, airplane type, destination, altitude, ETA, and so on. It was hideously expensive, but there was a 30-day trial. Don’t remember if it worked for Canada, but I for fun I used to fire it up when I heard a jet overhead and see where it was going, where it came from, etc.