28 March 2013

Avalon Airshow 2013

At the beginning of March, my girlfriend and I took a short holiday to Melbourne, Australia to visit some friends and attend a music festival. It was by coincidence that the biannual Australian International Airshow was taking place on a weekend that we didn't have plans, just 30 minutes on the train from where we were staying. It would have been rude not to go!

This was by far the biggest airshow that I have attended, apparently 168,000 punters turned up over the three trade exhibition days and three show days after. We were there for the final Sunday under a cloudless blue sky with light and variable winds, ground temp well over the 30 degree mark. It was pretty stifling actually but there were plenty of special aircraft there that I've never seen before that made up for that.

Highlights for me were the USAF C-17 tactical maneuver display, and F-16 solo performance, although it had nothing on the F-22 thrust vectoring demo. The amount of degrees that machine got pulled through in so little airspace was insane! Watching one one of the two airworthy Lockheed Constellations making low passes was also pretty unique, but what really caught me off guard was a very low pass by a Pitts S2S and Edge 540 in formation, in front of a giant wall of fire that exploded out of no where. There were some great photos of this on the front page of the paper the next morning from the photographers who were poised and waiting!

Anyhow, here's a few from my point and shoot. Nothing fancy, just a record of the trip for the memory bank really. As always, much better stuff from the pro's with the six foot long lenses can be found with a quick google search.

Catching the All Blacks A320 to Wellington at the beginning of the trip
C-17 takeoff
Pitts over the crowd
Monster truck sideshow
Another crowd overview with a Qantas Dash 8 parked up
A cropped zoom of the F-22 airbourne
RAAF F-18 parked up
One of two polished metal DC-3's
Melbourne's Gooney Bird, the second DC-3
The F-16 preparing to taxi
RAAF Hawk on the apron
Static RAAF Boeing 707 tanker
The Pitts and Edge creating a choreographed mess
The F-22 backtracking the runway
B-52 static- this thing was gigantic!
Close up of the Raptor's anhedral droopy wings
A static PC-9 from the RAAF Roulettes aerobatic team

09 March 2013

Latest Taranaki Video

Further to my last post, I flew another brief stint at the very end of February down at New Plymouth parachute dropping. This was before I popped over to Melbourne for a short holiday, just in time to catch the Australian International Airshow at Avalon- photos to follow next month when I have time to sort through the SD card.

In the mean time, our office girl at Skydive Ballistic Blondes has put together a sweet compilation movie that summaries the company's presence thus far at the Taranaki dropzone- there's plenty of my own cockpit cam GoPro footage in it, and features material from our original August to November stint in 2012, plus the three times we've been back down to visit in December, January and the aforementioned recent February trip. I've never seen the West Coast look so parched! Enjoy...

Taranaki Boys from Skydive Ballistic Blondes on Vimeo.