Saturday, March 29, 2014

Today's visitor from CTC

Today's visitor to the aero club was this Diamond DA42, ZK-CTH registered to CTC Aviation Training of Hamilton. I thought this aircraft looked different from last time I photographed it, and when I compare images, I see it has been repainted using a single dark blue colour, a revised "coat of arms" and the words "committed to excellence" plastered on the winglets and fuselage.

A quick trip down south

I was working out of the office last week, in and around Christchurch and Dunedin. Unfortunately there wasn't much time for aviation-related sightseeing, but such is life.

I flew to Christchurch [NZCH] on Jetstar [definitely not my choice, but then I wasn't paying], and it looks like someone found cheap flights on Sunday morning... and that nobody else much likes flying anywhere on Sunday morning either [or maybe nobody else much likes flying Jetstar???]. The aircraft would have barely been half full.

My colleague and I were in row 5 on an Airbus A320 and there were a total of 3 passengers in front of us, and by the look of the interaction with one from the otherwise disinterested cabin crew, one of them was likely a Jetstar staffer.

Anyway, we survived the trip to Christchurch and on Wednesday evening flew on a Mount Cook/ Air NZ ATR-GIE ATR72 to Dunedin [NZDN].

On Friday we were due to fly direct from Dunedin home to Wellington but due to crew illness, we ended up flying back via Christchurch [on ATR-GIE ATR72-212A, ZK-MCO, and ZK-MVB], and only arriving 40 minutes are the original schedule - nicely done Air NZ.

Anyway, photos... top to bottom we have:

View out of the Jetstar A320 soon after takeoff from Wellington.
Empty seats on the flight
Boeing 737-319, ZK-NGG, registered to Air NZ at Dunedin Airport
ATR-GIE ATR72-212A, ZK-MCO, registered to Mount Cook Airline, also at Dunedin Airport

Monday, March 17, 2014

RNZAF Lockheed C130 breakdown

The second piece of news from today is that an RNZAF Lockheed C130 Hercules, NZ7001, had an issue. I don't know the details, but it looks as though it is having a tire and/ or wheel replaced. As you'll see from the photograph, the aircraft is only just clear of the runway strip, but still in a controlled part of the aerodrome at holding point Mike 5.

The incident occurred this morning, and was apparently accompanied by airport fire/ rescue services [nothing in that, it'll be standard procedure], so it's taking a while to fix the problem. The runway was unavailable for a short time but was quickly back to normal [at least if you happened to be on the Eastern Apron...].

Firstly, the big news! Welcome to Wellington, ANA!

There are two interesting bits of news today, but the most interesting, by far, is the arrival into Wellington of ANA [All Nippon Airways] Boeing B777-381/ER, JA788A!

This is one of very few times that an aircraft of this size has operated into Wellington, with the obvious exception of a few Air NZ B777 flights in the past few years, and for those with long memories, the Qantas B747 flights of several decades ago. Oh yes - there was the Gulf Air A340 from 2009, but not many others.

My pictures are not great, although I hope to see the departure tomorrow evening [all going to plan], but here's the one I got from the other side of the airfield. If you want to see some great photos or for more information, check out the MRC Aviation blog posts HERE and HERE.

Saturday, March 15, 2014

Brand new Air NZ A320

I know I've been a bit quiet for the last couple of weeks... partly this has been because of cancelled flights [so nothing to see], but also because I went up to Auckland for work last week [and no time for spotting! :-(].

I got home on Friday evening, before the forecast [and now rather real] bad weather hit Auckland - just waiting for it to arrive in Wellington, probably overnight. My ride home was a brand new Airbus A320-232, ZK-OXE. When I say "brand new", I understand it entered service the previous day [check out MRC Aviation for details and some great photos]. According to the CAA website, it only entered the New Zealand register on 10 March.

Despite the lack of comfort that comes from my knees banging on the seat in front, a brand new aircraft is a nice way to fly!

I didn't get any photos of it, but while at the Aero Club today, I did see another new one departing. ZK-OXD has only been on the register for a month and so in service just under a month.

I do hope to have some more regular posts in the next month or so, although I have some more work trips planned also... we will see.

Anyway, here are the pictures of ZK-OXD departing Wellington earlier today.