Alaska Airports

What coverage do you have for airports in far northern Alaska?

I found this posted today in an Alaskan web log:

Something is going on at the airport
It is about 2:30 in the morning. The runway lights are lit at the airport - I can see them from my window. There is also some stronger light blinking higher up, which looks like it is from an airplane on the ground. I wonder what is going on.

The airport is Deering, Alaska (Code: DRG). When I enter that airport code (as DRG or KDRG), it returns as an “Invalid” code. Now I, too, am wondering what was going on. I’d guess a plane was on a landing approach, and I bet it wasn’t a VFR flight at 2:30 a.m.

Sorry about the ambiguity of the invalid code page. There are two systems of airport codes, IATA and ICAO; FlightAware uses ICAO. DRG is the IATA code for Deering, AK while PADE is the ICAO code. Usually our code to convert from IATA to ICAO works, but for Hawaii and Alaska it’s not perfect yet.

But alas, there is no page for PADE either. This is because there has never (at least, not in the time FlightAware has been open) been an IFR flight into or out of PADE. This isn’t unsual for an airport with no published instrument procedures like PADE.

I notice that on FlightAware’s “Airborne All Special Flights” page, , three of the four flights shown are operating in Alaska. Among the Origin or Destination airports are KVDZ, KDUT, and KMRI. However, clicking on any of these codes, to View Airport Activity returns a “Unknown or Invalid Airport Code” response.

KVDZ must be Valdez. I’d like to see what the others are.

This brings up a possible associated program enhancement. When viewing ‘special flight’ or any ‘airport activity’ page, it would be very helpful if pausing the mouse over an airport code would cause a ‘city/state’ pop-up label to appear.