All photos me too, copyrighted
Back during Achtung, Skyhawk!‘s early days in the years around 2010, I had every once in awhile tried to liven things up by posting short collections of in-flight photos taken from a variety of light aircraft above northern Croatia (and occasionally beyond). Dubbed, somewhat unimaginatively, “The View From Up Here”, the three-strong set (Parts 1, 2 & 3) had been quite well received by readers, prompting me to – belatedly – put together a new & improved batch to keeps things rolling :).
However, since the time of 1, 2 & 3, most of my flying had taken me onto bigger machinery, having landed a job in the right seat of the Dash 8 Q400 a little over a year ago. While the “straight & level” nature of airline operations might suggest that interesting, unusual and attractive shots – as possible in GA – would be few and far in between, the realities of life aboard a turboprop – operating at lower levels, day & night and often in the weather – had meant that I had pretty quickly managed to amass quite a nice heap of interesting material.
Sprinkled additionally with a handful of ground shots that had taken my fancy, I am thus glad to be able to present – for more-or-less the first time – “the view from the right”… 🙂
An unusual perspective of QC as it soaks up the last sunlight of this beautiful summer day at Munich Airport (MUC/EDDM). The day must had also been interesting for the four handlers sitting in a pushback truck behind me, likely wondering why was this guy with a big camera clambering all over a baggage trolley…
An old aviation book I have – printed back in the late 70s – states that “a fascinating range of vehicles can be seen at any airport”… somehow I doubt they had had this in mind!
You know you’re at Zagreb (ZAG/LDZA) in the winter when the tail of a 30 meter long aircraft starts disappearing into the fog… the bane of the Balkans, the winter fog is often more than a passing nuisance, and can persist – with little variation – for days on end.
When you don’t have a tripod on you, you have to use whatever you have at hand – even a main gear tire! CQA is seen waiting about for one of its last flights of the day as company traffic further out prepares to taxi out for a short hop north.
The colorful cockpit of the Q400. The yellow panel floods, white switch backlighting and green sidewall map lights really give a lot to play with when you have a camera on you!
A snap I’d borrowed from a previous post – but one I just couldn’t leave out. Saluting the setting sun on another beautiful, calm and crisp summer evening. Traversing southbound above the Northern Adriatic Sea – just off Pula Airport (PUY/LDPL) – we were treated to this fantastic view by a large high pressure area that had been parked over the region for several days…
Waking up at the crack of dawn does have its advantages! A telltale sign of the approach of winter on the Balkans, thick morning fog and layer upon layer of stratus cloud often conspire to make aeronautical operations rather… interesting. At least while we’re up here – in this instance just above northeastern Albania – we do get a nice consolation prize!
The importance of being at the right place and right time… soaking up the stunning view outside as we enter a high-level cloud bank somewhere over eastern Belgium.
Blue skies, dark clouds, a fiery sunset above the silhouettes of the Alps – and Innsbruck, Austria in the distance… not a band end to another anti-cyclonic day above Europe!
When one little cloud is all that stands between calm heaven above and fiery hell below. Enjoying a smooth ride (for now) above southern Germany as far above an A380 races past to points west…
Having covered everything from the Baltic to the Adriatic in one day – flying across eight countries in two legs – we prepare to bid the final day of 2015 goodbye as we race the sun on our way back to base… of interest, many will note that in most shots taken from the cockpit the wipers will be parked in the upright position. While their normal “resting stance” is horizontal and outside the field of view of the crew, in that position they cause quite a bit of wind noise – up to 5 dB according to unofficial measurements – leading most crews to park them vertically during cruise.
Breaking through the cloud deck at speed as we cross Croatia’s Velebit mountains on another early morning run. Even though summer may be far more enjoyable down on the ground, the odd winter weather patterns of the Western Balkans sure make for better views aloft!
A momentary escape from the rain and grayness below as we speed homewards at 25,000 ft above the eastern edges of the Alps.
Yet more cloud hopping above the Alps as we skip along this pristine altostratus in the company of our shadow and the resident halo effect…