An aircraft spotter used to be a very busy person, collecting as many registrations and/or pictures of aircraft as possible. When we were young, we used to spend a lot of our free time waiting outside the fences but close by the runways of Eindhoven Air Base . NL (also) hoping to spot some non/resident aircraft . Sometimes we were lucky, very often not. During holidays we therefore undertook many travels to nearby air force bases such as Volkel and Kleine Brogel (Belgium) or further abroad, where we could satisfy our needs. You can find the results of these activities under the titles “Aircraft-Spotting by lucky chance“ and “Arrival Days Spotting & other certainties“.
IMPORTANT NOTE : until the Seventies of the last century aircraft-spotting near military airfields could be a tricky hobby and even to-day there are countries where the authorities do not appreciate this kind of activities , so let this also be a warning to you !
For the first time Hans visited Leeuwarden AB (NL) as an aircraft-spotter in August 1967. In later years he came back several times. Needless to say it never was easy to picture aircraft in their landing-pattern and at other locations outside the fences !
Also in the case of announced squadron-rotations it was not certain beforehand if there would be any flying-activities on the day he chose to be present .
Frank only incidentally visited Soesterberg AB , but Hans frequented the former Air Base quite often because he moved to the province of Utrecht (where Soesterberg is located) at the end of the Sixties , after having made his living in Eindhoven . So he (also) became a Soesterberg AB “home” spotter and he already has published a lot of his Soesterberg pictures elsewhere on the web. The picture-gallery on our website shows a limited selection of pictures not only of the aircraft of the resident American “Royal” squadron , The Wolfhounds , but also of various other planes that were stationed at Soesterberg AB or only paid a visit over the years. They were all taken from outside the base.
In 1970 the French Navy aircraft carriers Clemenceau and Foch visited the harbour of Rotterdam for a courtesy visit; Frank and Hans went aboard the Clemenceau on June 7th , while Hans (in company) also visited the Foch on May 17th , to take a number of pictures of the aircraft that were parked on the flight-decks.
During the Sixties Volkel (NL) was an airbase where photography was not easy; nevertheless the authors (Hans and Frank) managed to take some pictures during that period . Later on facilities to do so grew easier. This gallery contains a selection of the images we took at Volkel – mainly standing near the landing-lights waiting for the aircraft to come in.
Some pictures , made by Frank on Thursday , June 12th , 2013, are added to this gallery
This was the day prior to the Open Days of the KLu; Frank and Hans went to Volkel in an attempt to catch some of the arrivals for the airshow. The Open Day of 13 June is reported in a separate gallery.
Hans visited Twenthe AB (NL) as an aircraft-spotter for the first time in 1968. During more recent years he came back there several times .
This gallery contains a selection of the pictures , taken by him outside the fences of Twenthe Air Base (NL) in their landing patterns and on occasions when there were exercises going on not knowing beforehand for certain if he would be successful.
AMARC, the Aerospace Maintenance And Regeneration Center is a huge storage and maintenance facility; it is located on an edge of Davis Monthan AFB in Tucson, Arizona. Frank visited the “boneyard” in May 2009.
On June 25th , 2003 Hans was invited to join in for a one-hour flight in Fokker 60 Utility U-01 of nr.334 sq., K.Lu. from and to Eindhoven AB ; in later years these Fokkers have been transferred to the Peruvian Navy. (special thanks to Kon.Ver.Onze Luchtmacht /KNVOL for organizing this flight)
Whilst on a business trip to Poland in September 1994 Frank was invited to visit the (now closed) Pila Air Base of the Polish Air Force; the air force officials were so kind as to show him one of their Pila based Suchoi SU-22 fighters. Presented here are a few photos of this memorable visit.
In the afternoon of October 19th , 1983 an aircraft-spotters meeting took place at Volkel AB . Hans was one of about two hundred enthusiasts who were present and took the opportunity to make pictures of some of the last operational Dutch (T)F-104 Starfighters of 306 squadron, 312 squadron & the All-Weather Flight (CAV) as well as some of the first General Dynamics F-16’s issued to nr. 311 squadron. An NF-5B from Eindhoven , a Dutch Navy Orion from Valkenburg and a Bölkow-105 helicopter made this well-spent afternoon complete.
November 16 ,1979. Extreme cold weather and dark clouds prevented the 25th anniversary of the American presence in Holland to be an enjoyable outdoor event. A small static display and an air display marked this historic milestone. A selective audience had been invited to attend this event at Camp New Amsterdam. Highlight of the static display was an ex-Portuguese AF Sabre. Applied with green stripes over the tail the aircraft had quickly been repainted in colours of 32nd FDS. The paint was still wet and USAF roundels were made of paper and sticked to the fuselage.