Aero Crew News 2024 Photo Contest Winners

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Grand Prize Winner

Enduring the Storm: C-118 Stands Strong – Todd K.

McGuire Air Force Base boasts numerous iconic static exhibits, among them the C-118, a military iteration of the DC-6 renowned for its pressurized cabin, enabling increased passenger capacity and enhanced efficiency in flight. As a formidable thunderstorm loomed overhead one evening, I parked along the roadside, awaiting a safe moment to venture out for a long exposure, eager to capture the backdrop of electrifying lightning. The resultant image encapsulates this endeavor.”


2nd

The C-118 Weathers the Storm – Todd K.

McGuire Air Force Base proudly houses various notable static displays, including the C-118, a military variant of the DC-6 famed for its pressurized cabin, facilitating greater passenger capacity and improved flight efficiency. Amidst a vast thunderstorm engulfing the night sky, I waited by the roadside, biding my time until I deemed it safe to venture out for a long exposure, hopeful of capturing the mesmerizing backdrop of lightning. The resulting photograph encapsulates this endeavor.


3rd

Paradise Found – Dustin B.

Flying the Cessna 172 has been my absolute favorite, even when compared to flying the CH-47 and the 737. It’s what initially sparked my passion for aviation and got me into flying. There’s just something about the Cessna 172 that holds a special place in my heart. The feeling of being in control and soaring through the sky in that aircraft is truly unparalleled. It’s where my aviation journey began, and it will always have a special significance to me.


4th

“Betty,” a 1943 Stearman waiting on the fog to clear – Jeremy B.

Taken at the Rockport Aransas County Airport, where she taught military aviators to fly 80 years ago.

Vintage Air Tours flies this airplane and others to offer unique flying experiences and share this history behind these vintage machines, as well as to share the stories of those who operated them in their glory days. We are based in Rockport, Tex.


Rural Alaskan Lifeline – Patrick S.

1/9/19 Everts Air Fuel, Noatak AK. Taken on my first shift of my first flying job as a FO with Hageland Aviation and this was the first time I had experienced -40 degrees (C/F). You can see #1 is still running keeping the aircraft warm as they pump essential stove oil for the village of Noatak.


Vintage 767 Departure – Jacob E.

I was jumpseating out of CVG behind one of the oldest 767s still in service (operated by ABX) with a fresh coat of paint. Thought it’d make for an interesting photo.


Nearby wildfires created an apocalyptic looking morning as the Dash-7 is being loaded for departure. – Courtney R.

The mighty de Havilland Dash 7, on an early morning, loading up to deliver an essential load of supplies to a remote northern communtiy. Deadly and destructive wildfires occurred all over Canada this year and were especially bad in the Northwest Territories. Shot in Yellowknife, NWT Canada. Air Tindi operates mainly in the far north of Canada serving many isolated and remote communities. Most of these places do not have roads and rely on air transport for everything (groceries, construction supplies, medical needs, etc). Tindi operates the largest remaining fleet of Dash-7s, an aircraft well known for its fantastic STOL performance.


B-29 ‘DOC’ lifting out of Tucson International Airport – Ricky M.

I was at Tucson International Airport where other fellow plane spotters have spotted, so I decided to try taking photos there myself and got this shot!


Ascot A400 Thunders into Portsmouth! – Lucas R.

This is a shot that makes me count my lucky stars that I live so close to an Air National Guard base with a heavy RAF presence. This is my favorite shot from since I’ve started plane spotting, and for good reason. 2023 brought a lot of military action into KPSM – being so close to the East Coast shoreline, it’s an ideal stopover for refueling before or after a transatlantic journey. We saw a lot of RAF traffic over the summer, just like the one pictured. I got the call a couple of hours before this A400 arrived, and I made my way out. Something inside me just said “you have a sidelong shot, why not try something different?” So that’s what I did. I positioned myself under the localizer bars, and just waited. I heard the familiar buzz of a turboprop and thought, “I need a shorter lens.” I ran to my car to get my short lens, and saw the plane in the distance. I ran back to my spot and got myself situated again. Then, out of nowhere, it appeared, blowing leaves and everyone’s hair. Time slowed down for a moment as I lined up my shot – all I heard for the next 10 seconds were shutters clicking. And then it was over. I checked my camera; did I get any good shots? You bet I did.


The most perfect 120 – Sada W.

This is a photo of a 120 that my dad and I restored. I decided to sell it and this photo was taken New Year’s Day 2023 in Faribault, Minn.


A PSA Bombardier CRJ-900LR posing in front of the US Capitol building while flaring for runway 33 at KDCA. – Casper W.

I was at Daingerfield Island when I photographed N549NN posing in front of the U.S Capitol. I practically waited 8 hours for this shot. I did nothing all day but stand on the boardwalk in the burning sun and photograph every single arrival I could landing at DCA on this very day.


Lucky Liz – Scott P.

I flew one of the only private BAE-146 in the U.S. She was named Lucky Liz and flying so slow was never more fun. This picture was taken on the ramp in Gunnison, Colorado.


Good Morning Montana – Rob G.

Great Falls Mont. Had been there overnight and thought the light was right for a good picture the next morning. No setup required.


Master of the Sea and Air: PBY Catalina – Brandon M.

This was taken during Sun ’n Fun 2022. This was my first-ever airshow and was one my greatest experiences in aviation. I also was able to see many of my favorite military aircraft, especially the one in the photo, the Catalina.


Goose Landing – Carl M.

Airplane spotting on Lake Hood late summer of 2023, caught this beautiful bird in my lens.





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