Pictures Of The Week

Week 52, December 2016

Pictures of the Week
Pictures of the Week Pictures of the Week
Pictures of the Week Pictures of the Week Pictures of the Week Pictures of the Week

Clockwise from top left:

  1. Kevin certainly wasn't inverted when he took this shot of one of the US Navy's Aggressor MiG-2...uh...F-5Ns. Already a drop-dead awesome scheme, catching it in the stunning Nevada sunset has left us with this cracking shot of a true Cold War warrior. Made famous by the popular volleyball movie Top Gun, the F-5 remains an enthusiast's favourite, and they continue to see service all over the world.

    Image © Kevin Bell

  2. Something a little unusual for this photo, but we love the effect that the reflection shot has in images like this. Bringing in the "human element" to aviation photography can often be a bold choice but when done right it works wonders, and compositions like this offer a whole new perspective on otherwise familiar machines.

    Image © Kelvin Sullivan

  3. RAF Lakenheath offered an evening's photography session to the enthusiast community, of which places were quickly snapped up - including one by UKAR's own Andy Evans. Sadly weather conditions on the day precluded any night flying or activity but the hosts did not want their guests to leave disappointed and arranged a trip to the HAS complex to shoot the Eagles under the lights.

    Image © Andy Evans

  4. We love seeing Italian machinery on our forums, and Giorgio provided us with a wonderful thread from Milan Linate, which opened its doors to the public for the Italian Armed Forces Day. Among some of the more heavy metal types on show was this SIAI 208M, which to our eyes is a real rarity indeed! The Italian Air Force has operated the type since 1968 and use it for glider towing, liaison and training.

    Image © Giorgio Varisco

  5. Anyone thirsty? Red Bull's hangar 7 at Salzburg is a dream for both aviation and motoring enthusiasts, and as the images in Stewarts set show it's great for photography as well. Their gorgeous P-38 takes pride of place here among some very interesting colours!

    Image © Stewart Taylor

  6. Malta gets featured in our POTWs very often, and for very good reasons - some of the most interesting aircraft around used it as a stopover on their journeys. We picked out this Israeli Air Force IAI EL/W-2085 Nachshon but really the whole set is worth checking out, with many rare types and/or air arms making an appearance on the island over the last year!

    Image © Alistair Zammit

  7. Our final POTW of 2016, and what could be more appropriate than a sunset shot? Simply some gorgeous colours, great subjects and a lovely, final atmosphere in this shot. We hope you've enjoyed our showcases of some of the top-class photography to be found on UKAR's forums over the past year - roll on 2017!

    Image © Shaun Schofield

Pictures Of The Week

Week 51, December 2016

Pictures of the Week
Pictures of the Week Pictures of the Week
Pictures of the Week Pictures of the Week Pictures of the Week Pictures of the Week

Clockwise from top left:

  1. POTW-regular Jonathan takes the top spot this week, producing a spectacular tread overall, but this impeccable night time shot of a 48th Fighter Wing F-15E Strike Eagle from RAF Lakenheath. Fitting for the time of year, shots like this are hard to set up, and even harder to pull off, especially with operational subjects, Jonathan's skill should not be underestimated. Be sure to click on the image to be taken to his thread, for some spectacular photography of the East Anglian bases.

    Image © Jonathan Haylock

  2. Second up this week, might be one of the rarest subjects we've featured in POTW's long history. UKAR staff member Sam provided a review of North Korea's first airshow, which took place at Wonsan. Among the most newsworthy participants were these (beautifully schemed) Hughes MD-500s, of which the existence of the type in North Korean service had been debated for years, and only confirmed in 2013.

    Image © Sam Wise

  3. UKAR staffer Tim has provided quite the smorgasbord of variety for his 2016 round-up, most eye-catching was the beautiful "La Fayette" Squadron centenary Mirage 2000N of the Ramex Delta launching into the air, with plenty of afterburner! As many will know, Ramex Delta performed their final every public display at RIAT this year, but there are already positive noises that the loved French two-ship display may re-form on the Mirage 2000D variants.

    Image © Tim Croton

  4. Paul posted a great set this week from Nellis AFB, an airshow that will be famed for the last appearance of F-4 Phantoms in US Air Force service. However, we loved this shot of a rare appearance of a visiting T-33 from the 9th Reconnaissance Wing, based at Beale Air Force Base, co-located with the famed U-2 Dragon Lady.

    Image © Paul Smith

  5. We're well-used to Chris' excellent threads of aircraft from Germany these days, and this is no exception. Offering a glimpse at lesser-seen offshore rotary assets, including this fine composition of a Eurocopter BK 117, operated by HeliService GmbH. HeliService provides interesting work, operating not only offshore flights, but polar flights measuring sea ice movements.

    Image © 'BigClick67'

  6. Stu has posted some utterly wonderful stuff on the forum over the years. The undisputed king of the "golden oldies" delivered once again, with this fantastic image from his father of a Marham-based 57 Sqn Victor K2 refuelling a brace of Lightnings. Be sure to brew yourself a cup of tea, and click the image and view the entire thread from start to finish for some truly exceptional aviation nostalgia.

    Image © Mick Freer (via Stu Freer)

  7. One of the benefits of the winter months are (when the elements allow!) the utterly sublime lighting conditions, none is more evidence of this than Bradley's excellent image of this Emirates Airbus A380 climbing out of London Gatwick Airport, at an angle we've seldom seen in images from the Sussex airport.

    Image © Bradley Bygrave

Pictures Of The Week

Week 50, December 2016

Pictures of the Week
Pictures of the Week Pictures of the Week
Pictures of the Week Pictures of the Week Pictures of the Week Pictures of the Week

Clockwise from top left:

  1. First up this week as a glorious study of this US Navy E-2C Hawkeye from VAW-117 "the Wallbangers", which flies as part of Carrier Air Wing Seven aboard the USS Harry Truman. When not deployed, the unit is based at NAS Point Mugu, from where Kevin managed this splendid composition - well deserving of our top spot this week.

    Image © Kevin Bell

  2. In terms of US Air Force history, things are seldom this historic these days. In December 2016, the very last F-4 Phantoms were finally put to rest, after an incredible career. The last remaining of the venerable type, the QF-4 target drone variant, is being replaced by the newer QF-16 in the role. Their final airshow appearance, after more than 50 years' service, was at Nellis Air Force Base's Aviation Nation airshow, which UKAR's own Rod McDonough attended, and came away with this marvellous image.

    Image © Rod McDonough

  3. POTW-regular Mark also features this week, with a fine composition showing a Polish MiG-29 doing what it does best! Despite the type's age, the Fulcrums are due to soldier-on with the air arm for some years yet, as the Polish Ministry of Defence confirmed in November last year that the acquisition programme for replacement fighters was due to commence in 2023.

    Image © Mark Rourke

  4. Long-time UKARian Alan has produced some winning threads over the years, and continues to do so; this time with his set of the USAF Thunderbirds taken at Fort Worth. This shot in particular caught our eye. The great colours and contrast between the airframe and dark clouds in the backdrop, as well as getting some "sky beneath the wings", Alan lives up to his impeccable standard.

    Image © Alan Kenny

  5. Despite its aging MiGs and Sukhois, change is still apparant at the Polish Air Force, as their obsolete PZL TS-11 "Iskras" are replaced by the much more capable Aermacchi M-346 on delivery to Dęblin, where Łukasz caught them in some fantastic evening light following a post-delivery test flight.

    Image © Łukasz Lipka

  6. It's fair to say that despite the Civil Aviation Authority's hammer-blows to airshow in the UK this year, Shuttleworth have still managed as decent a season as could have been expected this year, upon which it is hoped they will build on in 2017. Martin's shot of the Mew Gull replica, and the Collection's glorious de Havilland DH.88 Comet really caught our eye, harking back to the true golden age of romanticism in the aviation era.

    Image © Martin Eames

  7. Last but by no means least this week, we do love some airshow nostalgia. Given the lack of appetite for classic jets on the airshow scene at the moment, looking back on Duxford's September airshow in 2013, it was excellent to see the Norwegian Air Force Historical Squadron's CT-33 (the aircraft being a Canadian-built example), alongside their more commonly-seen Vampire pair visit the aerodrome.

    Image © 'Dr Cake'

Pictures Of The Week

Week 49, December 2016

Pictures of the Week
Pictures of the Week Pictures of the Week
Pictures of the Week Pictures of the Week Pictures of the Week Pictures of the Week

Clockwise from top left:

  1. Coventry's 'Shack' is a real privilege for us to have running in the UK, and it's perhaps an underappreciated one. Under the lights it's a fantastic beast to shoot with its four roaring Griffon engines turning twenty-four propellers - to think these things were still flying in the nineties is remarkable. Recently returned to taxiing status and giving runs for attending audiences, the hope is that this fantastic machine will one day return to the air top tell the story of this unique creation.

    Image © Cameron Sys

  2. Another night shot from the supremely talented Lloyd Horgan, who has had an absolute stunner of a year with his work both overseas and at home. This shot comes from his time spent documenting the work and activities of the Italian Coast Guard and the work they do in the Mediterranean from their base in Sicily. Lloyd accompanied them on missions and was able to cover a great deal of their heroic actions rescuing people in the sea - but this shot really caught our eye for the astonishing colours at play. The whole set is worth checking out - your jaw will hit the floor more than once.

    Image © Lloyd Horgan

  3. One of the most exciting additions to the European jet circuit is the Norwegian CF-104D which was restored to flight in 2016. Philippe took some great shots of it in the months running up to its first flight, showing off that distinctive shape that has been absent from the skies here for so long. We're sure that this jet will become a highly sought after item for shows on the continent - but for 2017 at least they're staying closer to home. Can't wait to catch this one...

    Image © Philippe Rey

  4. A very unusual visitor to IWM Duxford's usually propeller-oriented fare was a USAF HH-60G Pave Hawk on a sortie from RAF Lakenheath. After a few circuits on the grass field it parked up and kept the rotors turning while the crew ran in to the airfield's cafe for some coffee! Credit has to go to the crew who were engaging with the visitors to the museum, handing out gifts to the kids gathered at the fenceline before they left and made sure to say thanks for the visit.

    Image © Brian Marshall

  5. As commonplace as Vipers are, these F-16Ns are rare indeed, being as they are part of the aggressor jets for the US Navy based at NAS Fallon - only 26 of this particular variant were made. They also look a damn sight better than your standard grey F-16 in their bright aggressor schemes, made to simulate any number of potential adversaries that the pilots of the US Navy might face in the future - though there's an unsurprising focus on the liveries of the Russian Air Force.

    Image © Edwin Schimmel

  6. You may be forgiven for thinking this is a shot of a police helicopter, but it is in fact one of the newest members of the UK's helicopter training fleet - the Juno HT1. Alongside the Airbus Helicopters Jupiter HT1, the Juno will slowly replace the Squirrels and Griffins currently used to train the RAF and Royal Navy's helicopter pilots at the Defence Helicopter Flying School. This pre-delivery shot caught our eye for both the gorgeous sunset light and the large G reg on the side, something that it won't be carrying once it enters service.

    Image © Matt Varley

  7. A shot we'd expect to see at Fairford rather than Coningsby (or maybe not...a Typhoon pairs display?), this image from Tom made us smile. Many a great shot has been achieved by those who journey to the fence at the bases round the UK - if you know where to stand. With all of the tasty jets on offer at RIATs and abroad it's easy to overlook the cracking machines we have at home, especially when they pull off moves like this! It's also great to see RAF Typhoons still with their squadron markings...

    Image © Tom Wittevrongel