In 2011, the yearly Netherlands Air Force
Opendays were held at the Leeuwarden airbase in the Northern part of the
country. As the airshow organizers always do a great job in attracting
a great mix of interesting aircraft participants, we were keen to go there
for some photoshoots. The region around the nearby Wadden Islands is just
wonderful as backdrop for our photographs, and so we chose Texel airport
as our operating base.
Thanks to the great contacts with the airshow organization
and the participating aircrew, we were able to have a nice range of photoflights
during the days preceding to the event. Ofcourse the Royal Netherlands Air
Force was well present and we had the pleasure to photograph multiple assets
of the fleet. On the first day the Eindhoven based C-130 was photographed
above the clouds as well as the huge KDC-10 tanker. What a great sight it
was to see the tanker closing in on us in the distance and slowly coming
closer. Thanks to the flying crew we were able to take some dynamic photographs
of from all angles above the Vlieland shooting range.
We also had the luck to photograph the local Rescue Helicopters
behind our Skyvan photoship. First came the Navy Lynx which briefly posed
for photographs but had to brake off after having a technical problem. It
was probably our very last time we could photograph the Lynx Helicopter
as they will be replaced by the NH-90 in the very near future. The other
famous Rescue Helicopter is the AB-412SP “Tweety” which is based
at Leeuwarden airbase and regularly operates at the Wadden Islands, transporting
patients to the mainland. The yellow colors of the helicopter and the high
visibility rotor blades make a nice contrast against the background.
Ofcourse the famous Orange F-16 could not be missed and 2011
display pilot Capt. Tobias "Hitec" Schutte posed nicely for the
photographs over the Vlieland shooting range. This time he also brought
his Turkish and Belgian F-16 Colleagues in a unique formation. It proves
the excellent cooperation between different Air Forces demonstration teams
working together. During the same photosessions we also photographed the
German F-4 Phantom and the Polish Mig-29 fighters which have been published
on our website in a separate report, as well as the Solo Türk team.
Hereby we would like to thank all the flying crews for their
excellent flying skills which resulted in these great images. We also thank
the organisation of the Leeuwarden Opendays for their great cooperation
and everyone else who made these photoshoots possible.