Wednesday, February 06, 2019

Young Eagles visit to RNZAF Base Ohakea - Biggin Hill!

Following the visit to 3 Squadron and their helicopters, we had yet another treat - a visit to Brendon Deere's Biggin Hill hanger!

After a quick briefing, including an introduction to the aircraft in the hanger and "if there's an earthquake, please protect the Spitfire!" :-), we were able to have a good look around.

The WW2 historic warbirds were all airworthy and flown periodically. the Bell UH-1H Huey could be made airworthy and the Aermacchi MB-337 I'm not sure. Anyway, here are the aircraft. Check out the website for details of all these aircraft.

First up is the Supermarine Spitfire Mk IX. What an awesome machine!

Next up is the mighty Grumman TBM-3E Avenger. This was, by far, the largest aircraft in the hanger.

Last up from Biggin Hill is the Aermacchi MB339CB. 

Now for the very last photo from this series. Thanks to Iain Latter for supplying this image of the 18 aircraft that flew into Ohakea. This was taken from the control tower. Thanks Iain!

Tuesday, February 05, 2019

Young Eagles trip to RNZAF Base Ohakea - Helicopters

After lunch, the group headed to the relatively new helicopter complex, where the RNZAF's NH90's and A109s are housed.

The AgustaWestland A109 LUH [Light Utility Helicopter] is operated by 3 Squadron as the initial type for pilots streamed onto helicopters after their initial Wings course [on the T-6C Texan II].

AgustaWestland A109 LUH, NZ3402, operated by RNZAF

AgustaWestland A109 LUH cockpit, NZ3402, operated by RNZAF

AgustaWestland A109 LUH cockpit, NZ3402, operated by RNZAF

Next up was a visit to the heavy-hauler, the NATO Helicopter Industries [NHI] NH90. This is a huge helicopter! If I heard correct, at a pinch, they can put around 20 people seated in the back. That's big!

NHI NH90, NZ3303, operated by the RNZAF

NHI NH90 tail, NZ3303, operated by the RNZAF

NHI NH90 cockpit, NZ3303, operated by the RNZAF

Again, it was awesome that the RNZAF personnel gave up their time to show us around these awesome aircraft and especially to take the time to talk with the Young [and not so young] Eagles about these impressive pieces of kit!

Monday, February 04, 2019

Young Eagles trip to RNZAF Base Ohakea

Last Saturday, Wellington Aero Club and Kapiti Aero Club Young Eagles groups [plus a bunch of us older people!] were privileged to travel to the RNZAF's base at Ohakea for a visit. Most of us were able to fly in, with just two people having to make the trip by car. I flew three Young Eagles in, in Cessna 172S, ZK-CEO.

The flight up with a bit breezy and lumpy at times, but everyone had fun [and nobody chucked... yay! ha ha]. I have been to Ohakea once previously, but this was via a different route. This first image is my Avplan track of the flight. Look carefully and you'll see the planned arrival vs what we were asked to do. The red line is the plan, the green the actual route.

While there, we were treated really well by the personnel who greeted us and showed us around. After arrival, each aircraft was marshalled into place. I wish I had a picture of this - it's probably the tidiest gaggle of GA aircraft you've ever seen parked up :-)

After arrival, first off was a trip to the tower, followed by a visit to the 42 Squadron hanger, with its Beech King Air B350 aircraft, plus a couple of Harvard airframes [one being restored].

Beechcraft B350, NZ2353, operated by the RNZAF

A retired North American Harvard airframe, NZ1009, this one is for display only
Following this, we headed to 14 Squadron's Beechcraft T-6C Texan II's. These are awesome aircraft [specs here], especially when you think that these are the very first aircraft that many trainees get to fly!

Below are NZ1404 and NZ1407. What's not shown is there was an ejector seat beside NZ1404 that people could sit in [and pull the lever]. It was deactivated of course, so no new holes in the hanger roof! If I heard correctly, pull the lever and 4 seconds later you have a canopy over your head. A tight squeeze for me... I'd have to lose a bit of weight perhaps! Ha ha!

Beechcraft T-6C Texan II, NZ1404, operated by the RNZAF

Beechcraft T-6C Texan II, NZ1407, operated by the RNZAF

Beechcraft T-6C Texan II, NZ1407, operated by the RNZAF

Last up before lunch [which was very nice], was a visit to the Texan II sims. these are fixed based sims, with amazing visuals. I'm a little jealous that I didn't get a chance, but at least the Young Eagles did!

Texan II sim!
That's all for this post - there's another one with helicopters up in the next couple of days... then maybe another surprise after that :-)

For now, a huge thanks to all those that made the day possible and very, very interesting! The RNZAF of course, as well as Young Eagles coordinators at Kapiti Aero Club and Wellington Aero Club. Thanks guys!

Monday, January 21, 2019

Another Alliance Fokker at Wellington

Another Alliance Alines-operated Fokker F28-0070 [F70], VH-QQX, arrived at Wellington recently. It is rather unusual to have any Fokkers at Wellington these days, so to have two of them on the ground at Wellington from one airline is very unusual.

The aircraft was parked in front of the Execujet hanger and appeared to be having a service of some sort.

Fokker F70, VH-QQX, operated by Alliance Airlines

Fokker F70, VH-QQX, operated by Alliance Airlines

Sunday, January 20, 2019

Tecnam P2008

On Saturday, I also saw a Tecman P2008 at Wellington. ZK-RJN had been parked up and was going to leave but the wind put paid to that.

Tecnam P2008, ZK-RJN

Saturday, January 19, 2019

Fokker 70 [F-28-0070] at Wellington

Parked up at Wellington this afternoon was a Fokker 70 [F-28-0070], VH-NKU, which is operated by Alliance Airlines. I understand that this is undertaking the Tauck Tours flights in New Zealand, at least for the next few months.

Fokker 70, VH-NKU, operated by Alliance Airlines

Tuesday, January 15, 2019

Blustery conditions last Sunday

These are a couple of photos from last Sunday. The weather was a bit gusty, with crosswinds at times. It would have been nice to get some video as some of the jets were having a bit of fun...

Anyway, first up is a Bombardier DHC-8-311, ZK-NEA, which is operated by Air Nelson/ Air NZ.

Bombardier DHC-8-311, ZK-NEA, operated by Air Nelson/ Air NZ

Second up is one of Singapore Airlines' Boeing 777-212/ER, 9V-SRO.

Boeing 777-212/ER, 9V-SRO, operated by Singapore Airlines

Sunday, January 06, 2019

Fiji Airways' new Boeing 737 MAX 8

I know this is not exactly new news to some of you, but here are some pictures of the brand spanking new Boeing 737 MAX 8, DQ-FAB, which is operated by Fiji Airways.

This is not this first MAX 8 I have seen - I get to see some in Canada earlier in 2018, but it would be one of the first in this part of the world.

Boeing 737-8, DQ-FAB, operated by Fiji Airways

Boeing 737-8, DQ-FAB, operated by Fiji Airways

Boeing 737-8, DQ-FAB, operated by Fiji Airways

Wednesday, January 02, 2019

A lumpy approach and a BAC 167

Just a couple of very quick videos from earlier today.

I went for a flight in Piper PA28-161, ZK-KAT. It was lumpy [I cleverly found all the downdrafts in the area!]. The first video is around 30 seconds of the approach and landing.

This second video is of a very cool aircraft which taxied past me after landing. Nice!

Saturday, December 29, 2018

A departure from D'Urville Island

In this video, I have the departure from D'Urville Island, where we headed out over the northern part of the island before returning to Wellington.

Monday, December 24, 2018

A Christmas Eve post from D'Urville Island

Last Saturday two of us went out to D'Urville Island on a pre-Christmas fun flight, in Wellington Aero Club's awesome Cessna 172N, ZK-EKE.

D'Urville Island is one of my favourite places to go to - not too far away, somewhat challenging, but quite doable - and I'll always try and get a few circuits in while I'm there.

Anyway, here are two circuits [of 4 or 5 in total] that we did prior to heading back. Thanks to Andrew for the still photos included in the video.

I hope to have another video which shows some of the northern parts of the island and the trip home available in another week or so.

Sunday, December 23, 2018

Pacific Jet's Dassault Falcon 2000EX at Wellington

There was a very interesting visitor to Wellington on Saturday - a Dassault Falcon 2000EX, ZK-OCB, which is operated by Pacific Jets of an Auckland address. I'm not certain, but this would be one of the largest business jets on the New Zealand register [please correct me if I'm wrong!].

Dassault Falcon 2000EX, ZK-OCB, operated by Pacific Jets

Dassault Falcon 2000EX, ZK-OCB, operated by Pacific Jets

Saturday, December 22, 2018

FML is back in Wellington

ZK-FML, a Piper PA38-112 Tomahawk, is back in Wellington after many years.

This time it has had a full refurb and looks really good! The new paint job looks much better than the previous livery :-) It is owned by the Walsh Aviation Support Society Inc. As the name implies, this aircraft will be a regular at the annual Walsh Flying School in Matamata.

Anyway, I'm hoping this aircraft will be online with Wellington Aero Club shortly, so it's another one to watch the skies for!

Piper PA38-112 Tomahawk, ZK-FML, operated by the Walsh Aviation Support Society Inc

Piper PA38-112 Tomahawk, ZK-FML, operated by the Walsh Aviation Support Society Inc

Sunday, December 16, 2018

Fiji Airways departure

Today's picture is a Fiji Airways-operated Boeing 737-8X2, DQ-FJH, departing Wellington for Suva, Fiji.

I'm hopeful that in the next few weeks, we'll see one of their new B737 MAX 8's come through.

Boeing 737-8X2, DQ-FJH, operated by Fiji Airways

Boeing 737-8X2, DQ-FJH, operated by Fiji Airways