Going Low In The Mach Loop

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Remember the time that spotting was a hobby which needed patience? You just went to any airfield in the hope to see something. You know, before the web………. hello, anybody?

For those of you who miss that time or want to experience it I have a suggestion. It is still possible to relive those days. Although with some extra effort.

In the UK lies the low flying area of Wales. All you need to do is climb an every now and then steep hill/mountain (take your pick) and weather it out somewhere near the top. Meteorology wise this area is something of an amusement park. Within the time span of an hour you can have nice sunny weather, some snow, a hailstorm, torrential rain and a few seconds of ultimate spotters bliss.

A jet will pass below you in the valley with high speed without much of a warning at all. So military aviation spotters all look in the directions from which a jet might come and have just a few seconds to react. Although scanners are around there is not really any indication if jets will fly into valley or not. But if they do if can be a trainer like the British Aerospace Hawk T.1 or Hawk T.2, a fighter like the Panavia Tornado GR.4, a brand new Eurofighter Typhoon from the RAF. Also McDonnell Douglas F-15E Strike Eagles are regulars.

One needs a camera with a lens 200 to 400 mm lens to get a full frame picture. However for those of you who intend to try this a word of warning. It is highly addictive once you done it you want more!

Pieter Stroobach

I reside in Eindhoven, the Netherlands.

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