It was interesting to note that in late 2015, Whitsunday Air Services / Hamilton Island Air took delivery of a pair of De Havilland DHC-2 Beaver float planes from the United States of America (USA).
The first Beaver to break cover was VH-OHU (c/n 826) which was spotted wearing an attractive colour scheme for the 'One&Only' resort at Hayman Island.
VH-OHU has had an interesting history with the airframe first delivered to the US Army in 1955. After a series of re-registrations and two accidents in 1987 and 1999, the Beaver has most recently been operating in Bear, Delaware as N88G, before being de-registered and exported to Australia in mid-2015.
|David Lednicer / http://www.dhc-2.com/|
It was noted in a crate at the Chrisair maintenance facility at Mackay Airport in late 2015 before being re-built and then taking to the air and commencing operations out of Hamilton Island Airport shortly after.
The other Beaver is (to be) registered VH-OHD (c/n 1590) and has yet to be seen around the Whitsundays. This slightly younger Beaver first flew in 1965 and was operated by Field Air and then Float-Air Picton in New Zealand before being re-built by Wrightair at Tauranga in New Zealand. It wore the New Zealand registration marking of ZK-CMU.
|Dirk Septer / http://www.dhc-2.com/|
It operated in New Zealand until the mid-1990s when it was exported to the USA. It then operated as N97FW for Barnstormer Classic Aviation Inc at Fairfield, Connecticut until mid-2015 when it too was dismantled and exported to Australia. It was also noted in a crate at the Chrisair maintenance facility at Mackay Airport in late December awaiting re-build.
Of interest, Whitsunday Air Services / Hamilton Island Air also operates DHC-2 Beaver float plane VH-ZDA (c/n 803) which too has had an interesting history following its initial delivery to the US Army in 1955. It joined the Whitsunday Air Services / Hamilton Island Air fleet at Hamilton Island Airport in late 2010 after previously wearing the registration of N317DH in the USA.
For this post I referred to the fantastic website devoted to the classic de Havilland Canada DHC-2 Beaver - http://www.dhc-2.com/ - which incidentally features a great photo of VH-OHU as its cover photo!
|Chris Roughan / http://www.dhc-2.com/|
The website is chock-full of fascinating information and photographs of pretty much every DHC-2 Beaver ever built. Well worth checking out!
Additional photos taken by 'AC' ©