Plane spotters

I am not a plane spotter myself, but I can kinda see the attraction because I really enjoy running into aircraft I have flown or worked with in the past. There is a spot with a parking lot here in Vegas at the McCarran airport really close to the touchdown zone of runway 26L where you can pretty cool pictures of airliners touching down, I bet. It is always packed, and they give you a frequency to tune on your car radio, so you can listen to tower as well. I think it’s pretty neat actually. And I don’t know of any other airport where you get this close to the runway, especially the touchdown one, with an unrestricted view. As airport security gets tighter every year, it is getting harder for anyone interested in looking at airplanes to get even close to them.

Now that I’m thinking about it; are there different groups of plane spotters? Is there one for airliners, one for helicopters, etc.? Or do plane spotters like to spot ALL planes?
I bet military plane spotting is on a whole other level as well. Especially if you’re trying to spot black aircraft, LOL.

Should I ever actually see a chicken fly a plane, I’d take THAT photo over taking a photo of a C-130 any day, HAHA! Not sure why these guys got so upset in panel 4 …


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8 comments on “Plane spotters
  1. Dysko says:

    Plane spotter here! I like taking photos of all types of planes (though I have some preference towards warbirds and military planes), while I can confirm that others are very “category specific”.

  2. Klaas says:

    Sxm is famous for almost able touching the planes on arrival and departure

  3. Falcon says:

    Another good plane spotting site is on Sint Maarten at Maho beach. But I dont know what choose at that position of these spotters. Chicken behind yoke or amazing C-130.

  4. Franck Mée says:

    In France at least, there are very specific spotter groups, yeah. Most are about liners or military airplanes, some specialize in helicopters, a few are always looking for old birds and are much more excited by a 172A than a AC-130U. (They wouldn’t even look at an “omni-vision” 172, though. 😀 )

    As for myself, I’ve already gone quite far to shoot water bombers, but I don’t really care about military aircraft unless they’re actually doing something (like this A400M that was refueling Mirage 2000Ds right out of my window two years ago). So yeah, we all have our passions, I guess.

  5. Rwill says:

    When in college for my A&P, our facilities where adjacent to a National Guard base, and I was living just across the road. So the good part was I was always running across the road to get pictures of the air guard planes, the bad part was the column of tanks going past my apartment at 6 in the morning on weekends. But the best was when I got to go onboard and look around a C-130, and watch the flight crew prep for taking off.

  6. Mo Davies says:

    I usd to be Deputy Manager at a grass strip in North Yorkshire (UK). I regularly gave spotters tours of our aircraft as they were not allowed unatended access. Most of them new more about our aircraft than I did.
    I believe the nearest I have ever been to a C130, was whilst flying around the corner of a valley in a microlight over the North York Moors, when I met one coming the other way. Fortunately, he was slightly higher than I was. Oops!

  7. J Segal says:

    Didn’t know anybody still did that, great to hear it. Let kids watch from there, and a few years down the road, maybe they’ll become pilots; it’s great PR for the adults too. Used to be able to do that at Kennedy as well…not so much anymore.

    I DID, however, see a chicken fly an aircraft…sort of. Knew a glider pilot who used to wear a golf visor with a large green foam chicken on it, which was about half the size of his head. Thought he was merely a few eggs short of a dozen until he took the glider up and disappeared with it on a day where people were struggling to stay up for more than 30-40 minutes, and in highly unfavorable terrain. He came back three hours later, on what I later found out was a slightly-better-than-average flight for him. I had a lot of respect for him after that day, though still thought he was a few eggs short. Saw him once or twice more, then never saw him again. That was over 10 years ago. I never knew what became of the chicken.

  8. Harro Nehlsen says:

    Hi there,
    your strips always seem to be on time.
    I was at the Hamburg airport the other day with my instructor, preparing for an IFR flight. An all of a sudden the whole bunch of plane spotters at that little café rushed outside to watch a real rarity, a V-22 Osprey out of Cambridge, UK landing and after an hour or so taxied past the café and took of again. Pretty cool. What amazed me most though, was the whole bunch of plane spotters arrived about five minutes before the osprey arrived and when it did the first turn of his SID they were gone.
    Greetings form Germany

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