Saturday, October 31, 2009

Wellington to Masterton for no particular reason

I went flying today. No particular reason except that I was keen to get out of town for a short flight and Masterton fits the bill well enough. Today's flight was 1.4 hours return, which I thought was pretty good considering that I had to go the long way around via Turakirae Head [the direct route was clouded out].

On the way back I took the time to spot an unpublished glider strip south of Masterton - looks around a 1000 meter grass strip, which could be good in an emergency :-(

The first two photos are from Masterton itself. First is one of the Wellington Aero Club operated Piper PA38-112 Tomahawk ZK-FML which is based at Masterton for flight training. The second is the aircraft I was flying, PA28-181 ZK-TDJ parked outside of Wairarapa-Ruahine Aero Club.

The last photo is of a Robinson R22 ZK-IBS of Nelson Aviation College which was parked on the grass outside the Wellington Aero Club.

If the weather is good enough, I'm going flying again tomorrow - all going well, I'll get some in-flight photos - the scenary should be pretty flash.

Meanwhile, here are the photos...

Last weekend's visitors, an R44 a C172 and a PA34

A quick catch up from last weekend. Firstly, a Helipro Robinson R44, ZK-IBJ which performed an approach and overshoot. The second is a Cessna 172M, ZK-DRS, registered to Air Manawatu Ltd which performed a touch and go. Lastly is a Piper PA34-200T, ZK-JDH which is registered to Nelson Aviation College.

Friday, October 23, 2009

JNA no more, another Tomahawk and air ambulances

More on the catch-up pictures. This time I have a few pictures from last weekend.

The first is of Nanchang CJ6, ZK-MAO [think about it...]. This is not another aircraft, but simply a re-registration of ZK-JNA. The second is of Piper PA38-112 Tomahawk, ZK-TAW. This aircraft is temporarily with the Wellington Aero Club in place of one of the other Tomahawks.

Next is a picture of the NZ Flying Doctor Service Cessna 421B Golden Eagle, ZK-KBF, registered to Garden City Helicopters of a Christchurch address. Lastly we have Fairchild SA227-AC Metroliner. ZK-POB is covering for ZK-LFT which I understand is in for maintenance.

Enjoy the pictures!

Back to Wellington, Cessna 172

Here I am, back in Wellington. Earlier this month I saw this old Cessna 172, ZK-BVP parked up at the Wellington Aero Club. An old aircraft it may be, but it looks really flash with this paint job. It's good to see a nice paint job that doesn't replicate the modern paint schemes.

ZK-BVP is registered to a Tapanui address [Tapanui is north west of Balclutha on the South Island's east coast].

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

Europe Trip #37: Hong Kong and the rest of the world

This is it. This is the end.

The final post from my European trip! It has almost been a full month since I got back home to New Zealand, and I've finally caught up with the pictures!

After takeoff from Hong Kong, we flew back to New Zealand, crossing countries such as Indonesia and Australia on the way. I got a whole 3 hours sleep just north of Australia. This was the only sleep I managed since waking up in the morning in London the day before [and we left Heathrow around 9pm local time!]. All in all, around 40 hours awake. I hit the sack early that night!

Here are the final three pictures from Hong Kong. Before we get to those however, may I suggest you click this link, which will give you photos of the trip from my other blog - basically, everything that's not aviation.

I hope you've enjoyed the journey [almost] as much as I have enjoyed bringing it to you. Thank you for visiting! Next catchup is on the photos I've been taking since getting back to Wellington. Feel free to leave a comment if you want to - I appreciate the support :-)

Top to bottom are:

Eva Air, Boeing 747-400, B-16409
Dragon Air, Airbus A330, B-HYA
Cathay Pacific, Boeing 777, B-HNG

Europe Trip #36: Hong Kong - 2

More from the Hong Kong stopover.

Apart from the benefit of having a decent break, and being able to stretch the legs for a while [and yes, I do walk around the plane to stretch during the flight], seeing less familiar airlines is always a bit of a treat.

In this post, we have 5 airlines that I have never seen up close before [although some may fly in to Auckland International, I'm never there at the right time!]. Top to bottom are:

Dragon Air, Airbus A320, B-HSD
Air India, Boeing 777, VT-AIR
China Airlines, Boeing 737-800, B-18617
Jet Airways, Airbus A330-200, VT-JWQ
Lufthansa, Airbus A340, D-AIHR

Europe Trip #35: Hong Kong - 1

Back through Hong Kong we had a 2 hour stop over [it was supposed to be 1.45 hrs but we were always ahead of time on this trip], so rather that sit there doing nothing, I got the camera out and took a few photos.

Hong Kong is a wonderful airport for photography. There are large windows down all sides and you get to see a fair portion of the airfield from inside the terminal.

Anyway, this first set of photos are:

Air New Zealand, Boeing 777-200ER, ZK-OKD [this was the aircraft we were on]
Cathay Pacific, Boeing 777, B-HNG
Swiss International Airlines, Airbus A340, HB-JMF
KLM Asia, Boeing 747-400, PH-BFF
Shanghai Airlines, Boeing 737-400, B-5142

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

Europe Trip #34: Bye bye England

All too soon it was time to start the 30+ hours of travel back to New Zealand. The trip back was the reverse of the trip over, namely London Heathrow - Hong Kong - Auckland - Wellington.

We arrived at Heathrow in plenty of time, and as we experienced with the rest of our travels, there was very little in the way of hold ups. Check in was a bit of fun, if only because the airline systems had been flagged as my parents and I needing special assistance [stop laughing you lot!]! We were all able to walk and find our way around so none was required, although it would have been quite funny if I had asked for a wheelchair for each of us :-) ha ha

Just a couple of pictures this time... some scruffy looking fella airside at Heathrow [I've scrubbed up better since getting home :-)], then a picture of the sunrise over southern Russia and the "desert" of northern [central???] China.

I particularly like the sunrise picture - I took a few of them as did a member of the cabin crew I was having a chat with at the time [they are a friendly lot at Air New Zealand]. I hope you enjoy the pictures!

Monday, October 19, 2009

Europe Trip #33: Good bye Duxford

Here are the final pictures from the Imperial War Museum at Duxford. It's been a long road, lots of pictures, and even more fun.

I guess that I can only recommend that if you have the chance, go visit! The best lesson learnt was to leave more time so I'm not rushed because of a short visit. Next time I'll make sure I have a couple of days around Duxford and also at Hendon.

The final pictures are of the rear of the American Hanger [which faces the airfield proper], a Boeing B17G Flying Fortress and the Duxford Airfield Control Tower.


Europe Trip #32: IWM Duxford - 13 - Final Display Hanger B

OK, the very last of the in hanger pictures from Duxford are here. The next [and last IWM Duxford] post will contain a few more outside pictures, but for now, top to bottom we have:

Avro Lancaster Mk X
Westland Lysander Mk 3A
English Electric Canberra B2
Handley Page Hastings C1A

Europe Trip #31: IWM Duxford - 12 - Final Display Hanger A

OK, the last of the in hanger shots are in this and the next post. The pictures in these posts cover [approximately] World War Two through to the Concord. It's amazing how they manage to get so many aircraft in to one [big] room without it all looking cramped - I guess it helps being able to hang a few aircraft off the ceiling :-)

Clearly the most impressive aircraft was the BAC/ Aerospatiale Concord - the fact that it was open was ever better! This particularly aircraft was one of the test models and was equipped with the flight test gear int he front half. The rear of the aircraft had the usual seating [although masked off so I couldn't get a rest :-)].

Top to bottom are:
BAC/ Aerospatiale Concord [2 x pictures]
Avro York C1
Short Sunderland Mk V
Hawker Siddeley Harrier GR3

Sunday, October 18, 2009

Europe Trip #30: IWM Duxford - 11 - Awaiting Restoration

As I headed in to one of the main hangers which houses the Concord [and many other aircraft], I came across a space with just a few aircraft which were flagged as "awaiting restoration". Here are a couple of pictures of three of the aircraft, and one particularly intriguing aircraft - a radio controlled camera drone. This was in use with the British Army and Royal Artillery from 1961.

Top to bottom are:

Avro Shackleton MR3 [2 pictures]
Eurofighter Typhoon DA4 [2 pictures]
Vickers Viscount 701 [2 pictures], ex British European Airways
Northrop SD1 Drone

Saturday, October 17, 2009

Europe Trip #29: IWM Duxford - 10 - Airworthy/ restoration to Airworthy

The following aircraft were in a hanger that contained a variety of airworthy and being restored to airworthy aircraft. What you see in this post is a small selection of those aircraft.

Apart from the fact that many of these rare and impressive aircraft either are, or will be, airworthy, I was really impressed with both the cleanliness of this workshop, and that the public are allowed in to observe these restorations!

Top to bottom [with registrations, where known] are:

Curtis P40B Warhawk, G-CDWH
Grumman FM2 Wildcat
Beech 17 Staggerwing, G-BRVE
North American T28S Fennec [French built T28 Trojan]
Supermarine Spitfire Vb
Chance Vought F4U Corsair
Bristol Beaufighter