Yesterday I had one of the nicest mileage runs in a long time. This was a quick easy trip to San Jose, California and back. Most of my mileage runs have been much more involved and earned me more miles, but I was lucky enough to buy this during the 12 hour period when American Airlines was was matching Jet Blue with low fares from Austin to the West Coast. Since my cost per mile on this trip was only 1.54 cents per mile, I could not say no!

I really enjoyed my itinerary. My non-stop flight from Austin to San Jose did not depart until 8:30 a.m. Normally when I am on a mileage run, the plane is getting ready to land at Chicago at 8:30. So, having the chance to leave a little later was nice. Unfortunately, the weather was not very good when I got to the airport.

Austin-Bergstrom International Airport was covered with fog when I got there, but it started to lift as we boarded the plane and we were able to depart on time.

We boarded the plane, (as always, an MD-80). Thankfully, the low fog did not delay us and we took off on time. The plane was only half-full, I was the only person sitting in the exit rows.

I want to thank the Austin ground crew for one thing they did: a young Soldier was on our flight Although he had a coach ticket they upgraded him to First Class. When they told him he would be in FC, he whistled and said, “Cool!”

I slept for the first hour, then pulled out my trusty iPod and my Sudoku book to pass the time.

We had some great scenery along the way!

It took this river millions of years to carve this meandering path through the rocks.

It took this river millions of years to carve this meandering path through the rocks.

At times, the mountains looked close enough to touch.

Although the snow in the valley had melted long ago, there was still a lot of snow on the mountain-tops as we reached the Rockies over Eastern Nevada. The pilot mentioned that the world's oldest organism, the Bristlecone Pine tree, could be found in the area near the snow line.

This was no time to read my book, the view out the window took my breath away!

After crossing the Rockies we had a smooth flight into San Jose and even landed 10 minutes early. But there was little time to relax, the return flight to Austin would depart in 40 minutes!

I made a quick trip to the Admirals Club to refill my water bottle and to relax for a few moments. After a pleasant 15 minute stay, I went back to the gate for my flight home.

This time the plane was jammed. I got my exit row seat (same seat I had on the first flight) on the left side where there are only two seats: I think the seat next to me was the only empty one on the plane!

We had a smooth flight to Austin. It was interesting how much AA was using that aircraft that day. It started in Austin, flew to San Jose then back to Austin. After Austin its next stop was DFW and then Seattle. By my estimate, it may even have had time to leave Seattle for a red-eye back to DFW.

We got back to Austin and actually landed early again. Every flight I have taken since mid-February has arrived at least 10 minutes early! I think a lot of the credit for this can go to AA for adjusting their schedules to allow the aircraft more time on the ground, and to also allow for possible air traffic control delays. Bravo to AA for doing this!

We landed at Austin-Bergstrom shortly after 4 p.m. and I was home before 6. It has been a long time since I have had a mileage run as easy as this one, I was even home for dinner!

This was an easy mileage run, and while I earned less than 6,000 miles for the trip, I got them for an incredible price, so I am satisfied.

I have three more mileage runs planned between now and the middle of June, taking advantage of AA’s double EQM offer. After I complete my final mileage run, I should have 52,000 EQMs in my account and will have earned Platinum Status for the coming year. Thank you American!