I’ve been flying jets for @united for over 23 years now. In a sense, it defines me. So I’m constantly working to perfect my craft. The mastery of an almost 200,000 # machine takes countless hours of thought and practice. Safe, caring, dependable, and efficient. That is how I endeavor to move our customers, for they are guests in my small slice of the sky. A fully loaded commercial jetliner is no place to show off your fancy maneuvers and explore the outside edges of the flight envelope...so I bought a drone. As part of United’s push to leverage it’s incredible network, several interesting destinations have been added. One of them, Moab, peaked my interest, so I invited @ryandyar to join me to take another shot at getting a decent image of Factory Butte. Soon the drones were in the air. Supremely (over) confident in my flying abilities, I ignored the “Battery low, aircraft will return to the home point” warning and flew deeper and into the canyon-like veins of the surrounding terrain. Finally, I figured I had the shots I was looking for, and when I turned for home, my drone was screaming at me about low battery level. Cockily, I eased into the throttle and started to do the calculations of battery level, distance, and speed. Uh oh. I had learned from previous experience that when your drone gets ticked off enough at you, it announces “Landing” and starts to slowly descend, like it or not. Sure enough, a few minutes later, down it came. Now it was simply a lesson in geometry. Ryan, who had smartly landed with plenty of remaining battery, started loudly coaxing my craft even lower in hopes of seeing me have to hike all over the desert looking for the crash site. After a few agonizing minutes, it became apparent that I was going to make it…just. With about 30 feet to go I heard, “Battery level insufficient for landing”, and it started to tumble…right into my outstretched hand. I think I’ll just stick to flying jets for awhile. Lightning was captured by ground based camera and combined with drone image. If you catch lightning with a drone, go straight to Vegas. #UnitedJourneyContest #BeingUnited.