Monday, June 18, 2018

Air Affairs Australia Learjet 35As VH-ESM & VH-SLE and Learjet 36 VH-SLJ Arrive into Hervey Bay (Fraser Coast) Airport

Certainly interesting arrivals into Hervey Bay (Fraser Coast) Airport on Monday 18 June with a trio of Air Affairs Australia Learjet touching down from Nowra base in New South Wales.


Spotted parked up seemingly for the night are Learjet 35As VH-ESM ("Shadow 11") and VH-SLE ("Ajax 42") along with Learjet 36 VH-SLJ ("Ajax 01").

It will be interesting to see what happens with these lovely aircraft!

Sincere thanks to local plane spotter Ben M for popping out to Hervey Bay Airport after dark and capturing this great photo!

Photo taken by Ben May  ©

Ex Hamel 2018 - Royal Australian Air Force (RAAF) Challenger Bizjets Come and Go at Rockhampton Airport - Plus Wedgetail Missed Approach

Also on Monday 18 June, Royal Australian Air Force (RAAF) Canadair CL-600-2B16 Challenger 604 bizjet A37-003, which was spotted arriving into Rockhampton Airport from Canberra on Sunday 17 June, departed to Darwin again as "Consort 10".

File photo

A little later in the morning on Monday 18 June, fellow RAAF Challenger 604 bizjet A37-001 also arrived into Rockhampton Airport, also from Canberra, but as "Wisdom 89".  It was noted returning to Canberra later in the afternoon.

Finally, also on Monday 18 June, there was one other RAAF movement with Boeing B737-7ES / E-7A Wedgetail Airborne Early Warning & Control (AEW&C) aircraft A30-001 noted completing a missed approach at Rockhampton Airport.  It looked to fly up to Rocky from RAAF Base Richmond via a missed approach at RAAF Base Amberley.  The Wedgetail then departed North and completed another missed approach at Proserpine (Whitsunday Coast) Airport before continuing further North.  A30-001 was heard to be flying as "Wedgetail 01".

Photo taken by 'IAD'  ©

Ex Hamel 2018 - Australian Army NH Industries MRH-90 Multi-Role Helicopter A40-020 "Hustler 12" Completes Airwork at Rockhampton Base Hospital

On Monday 18 June, as Exercise Hamel 2018 is now in full swing, there was certainly a unique sight and sound over Rockhampton with Australian Army NH Industries MRH-90 Multi-Role Helicopter A40-020 spotted completing airwork at the Rockhampton Base Hospital.







The MRH-90 was heard using the radio callsign of "Hustler 12" and completed a 45-minute exercise which included several landings and take-offs from the Hospitals roof-top heli-pad.





A40-020 was noted flying in from and then back to the Shoalwater Bay Training Area (SWBTA).

Meanwhile, other helicopter movements in association with Exercise Hamel in and out of Rockhampton Airport on Monday 18 June included a flight of one Australian Army MRH-90 helicopter accompanied by a pair of Australian Army Eurocopter (ARH) Tiger Armed Reconnaissance Helicopters.  The unidentified choppers arrived into Rockhampton Airport from Shoalwater Bay in formation as "Warhorse-Angry Combined".  After dropping off some passengers, they returned to the Bay again in formation.

And finally becoming a daily occurrence, Royal Australian Navy (RAN) NH Industries MRH-90 Multi-Role Helicopter A40-043 was noted flying in and out of Rockhampton Airport between Shoalwater Bay and HMAS Canberra several times during Monday 18 June again as "Poseidon 43".





Sincere thanks to local plane spotter Russell P for again allowing us to share his awesome photos!

All photos taken by Russell Prothero  ©

Sunday, June 17, 2018

Ex Hamel 2018 - More Great Australian Defence Force (ADF) Aircraft and Helicopter Action at Rockhampton Airport on Sunday

With the Australian Defence Force's (ADF) Military Exercise Hamel 2018 starting in the nearby Shoalwater Bay Training Area (SWBTA), there were yet more nice helicopters and aircraft to pop into Rockhampton Airport during Sunday 17 June.

During the morning, another pair of Australian Army NH Industries MRH-90 Multi-Role Helicopters looked to arrive into Rockhampton Airport from Oakey again (like yesterday) flying in formation as "Knights Red".  The MRH-90s were identified as A40-031 (again) and A40-004.  After taking two loads each of passengers into Shoalwater Bay, they both returned in formation back to Oakey.










Some of the passengers on the MRH-90s came from Royal Australian Air Force (RAAF) Canadair CL-600-2B16 Challenger 604 bizjet A37-003 which was spotted arriving into Rockhampton Airport from Canberra as "Consort 10".  At the time of writing, it appears that the Challenger is still parked at Rockhampton Airport.




While there are no longer any RAAF Alenia C-27J Spartan transport aircraft parked at Rockhampton Airport, A34-002 "Wallaby 32" was noted departing Shoalwater Bay for RAAF Base Amberley.  While A34-005 "Wallaby 05" was noted also completing a couple of sorties into Shoalwater Bay from and back to Amberley.

And for the third day in a row, Royal Australian Navy (RAN) NH Industries MRH-90 Multi-Role Helicopter A40-043 was noted flying in and out of Rockhampton Airport between Shoalwater Bay and HMAS Canberra as "Poseidon 43".

Soon after the sun had gone down, a pair of unidentified Australian Army Eurocopter (ARH) Tiger Armed Reconnaissance Helicopters were noted completing airwork at Rockhampton Airport as "Ghost 61" and "Ghost 62".

Finally, as predicted, RAAF Airbus A330-200 / KC-30A Multi Role Tanker Transport (MRTT) aircraft A39-002 returned to Rockhampton Airport again from Sydney this time as "Dragon 16".




At the time of writing, A39-002 has sustained a technical problem and remains parked at Rockhampton Airport.

Sincere thanks again to all the local plane spotters for their help with compiling this Blog post - from all the information supplied to all the wonderful photos that have been shared!  Cheers guys!

Photos taken by 'IAD' and Jaxson White  ©

Recently Re-Painted Skytrans Airlines Dash-8-100 VH-QQI Calls into Gladstone Airport

On Saturday 16 June, Skytrans Airlines Dash-8-100 VH-QQI was noted arriving into Gladstone Airport from Cairns as QN9210.

https://www.facebook.com/SkytransAirline/

It appears that the Dash-8-100 was operating a closed sports charter with the Cairns Marlins noted to be playing at Rockhampton and Gladstone over the weekend in the Queensland Basketball League (QBL).

VH-QQI returned to Cairns from Gladstone Airport on Sunday 17 June again as SKP9210.

Of interest, VH-QQI was recently rolled out wearing the new Skytrans livery after being noted in storage at Cairns Airport in the airlines' older style livery.

And last week, the airline announced the introduction of their recently assigned, official airline designator code 'QN'.  Previous reference codes used were SKP (ICAO code) and Q6 (code for the previous Skytrans business).

Saturday, June 16, 2018

Ex Hamel 2018 - Super Saturday of Australian Defence Force (ADF) Aircraft and Helicopters Spotted at Rockhampton Airport

It was a 'Super Saturday' of Australian Defence Force (ADF) movements in and out of Rockhampton Airport on Saturday 16 June with visits by various aircraft and helicopters of all the Australian Armed Forces.

A pair of Australian Army NH Industries MRH-90 Multi-Role Helicopters looked to arrive into Rockhampton Airport from Oakey flying in formation as "Knights Red".  The MRH-90s were identified as A40-031 and A40-012.  After arriving and collecting passengers, both departed to Shoalwater Bay separately as "Knights Red 1" and "Knights Red 2" before later being heard flying in formation again all the way back to Oakey via overheard Rockhampton.








Around the same time, Royal Australian Air Force (RAAF) Canadair CL-600-2B16 Challenger 604 bizjet A37-001 was spotted arriving into Rockhampton Airport from Canberra as "Wisdom 88".  Soon after, it departed back to Canberra via what looked to be airwork, including a missed approach, at Bundaberg Airport.



Also calling in around the same time was Royal Australian Air Force (RAAF) Boeing C-17A Globemaster III transport aircraft A41-208 which arrived from the South as "Stallion 25".  After some light and heavy equipment was unloaded, the C-17 departed to RAAF Base Amberley.






















Throughout the day, Royal Australian Navy (RAN) NH Industries MRH-90 Multi-Role Helicopter A40-043 was noted flying in and out of Rockhampton Airport between Shoalwater Bay and HMAS Canberra as "Poseidon 43".



While RAAF Search and Rescue (CHC Helicopters Australia / Lloyd Helicopters) Agusta AW139 helicopter VH-SYJ "Choppa 32" was spotted completing two visits to the heli-pad on top of the local Rockhampton Base Hospital.  On both occasions it arrived from and later departed back to Shoalwater Bay.



During the afternoon, the sole remaining RAAF Alenia C-27J Spartan transport aircraft at Rockhampton Airport - A34-005 "Wallaby 05" - was spotted departing to Amberley.  A34-005 was later noted flying as "Wallaby 06" and completed a flight into the Shoalwater Bay Training Area from and back to Amberley.




Finally, a pair of RAAF Airbus A330-200 / KC-30A Multi Role Tanker Transport (MRTT) aircraft were spotted calling into Rockhampton Airport from Sydney.  Both aircraft looked to bring personnel and equipment in support of the upcoming Military Exercise Hamel 2018 which is getting underway this week.  Firstly, A39-004 "Dragon 11" touched down and unloaded before departing to Amberley.
















Then A39-002 "Dragon 15" touched down after dark, also unloaded, but then returned to Sydney suggesting that it could possibly return on Sunday 17 June with more personnel and equipment.








UPDATE!  Indeed, on Sunday 17 June, A39-002 "Dragon 15" did return to Rockhampton Airport from Sydney.

Sincere thanks to all the local plane spotters for their help with compiling this Blog post - from all the information supplied to all the wonderful photos and videos that have been shared!  Cheers guys!

Photos and videos taken by Trevor Hardsman, Kayanne Hardman and 'IAD'  ©