02 August 2015

Palmerston North to Hamilton on Eagle Air

Eagle Air's first service was flown from Hamilton to Palmerston North on the 3rd of October 1975. The Manawatu Evening Standard of that day reported... The first flight in a new air service landed at Palmerston North Airport this morning in the form this twin engine Beechcraft flown by pilot Paul Wright. The $ 160,000 machine will offer direct morning and evening flights between Hamilton, Wanganui and Palmerston North. It is a first venture into daily air service for Eagle Airways of Hamilton and should provide a service for businessmen wanting to commute out of town for a day’s work and back in the same day.

The Beech Baron that flew that service, ZK-ECA, is the header of this blog for the month of  August. 

Almost 40 years on I got to fly the Palmerston North to Hamilton sector on Friday night flying on Eagle 106 in not Beech Baron ZK-ECA but Beech 1900 ZK-EAC. The Hamilton-Palmerston North route will apparently be the last Eagle service to go next year.

For the 4 part history of Eagle Air see : http://3rdlevelnz.blogspot.co.nz/2013/01/eagle-airways-part-1-fledgling-eagle.html

01 August 2015

DUD-WLG Jetstar Flights

Jetstar today announced it will start flying between Dunedin and Wellington three times a week from October, and will boost trans-Tasman flights to Queenstown and Chirstchurch this summer. The airline said it would start operating the flights on its sixth domestic route from October 28. The new jet services will depart Wellington on Wednesday, Friday and Sunday at 11.10am with the return service departing Dunedin at 12.55pm. Jetstar New Zealand head Grant Kerr said customers had regularly requested the airline add a Wellington-Dunedin service. "We're looking forward to linking the two cities and offering students, leisure and business travellers a low fares option for airline travel." To mark the launch special one-way fares will be on sale from noon to 4pm today for $29 (for travel from February 3 to March 16 next year) and $49 (October 28 to December 9 this year). Regular one-way lead-in fares will be $79 one-way, Jetstar also announced it will be adding its wide body Boeing 787 aircraft to its trans-Tasman schedule over the upcoming Christmas holiday season, along with extra summer flying to Queenstown and Christchurch from Australia. Additional Airbus A320 capacity from Australia to Queenstown has been added for the busy holiday season with more than 10,000 extra seats between December and January compared with last year.  "Queenstown is truly a year-round holiday destination and we're recognising that by adding a significant number of extra seats this summer," Mr Kerr said. "This complements the additional flying we added during the ski season this year." More than 5000 extra seats will also be added over summer between Christchurch and Melbourne. 

31 July 2015

Third Levellers at Ardmore

A brief visit to Ardmore 30 July netted Barrier Air's recently delivered Cessna 208B Grand Caravan ZK-SDB parked on the taxiway while Dunedin based Mainland Air had Piper PA31-350 Cheiftain ZK-VIP on location, presumably in the area working for Barrier Air as noted in a hangar having some maintenance carried out was their Islander ZK-FVD. 

Interesting to note CAA registration transactions show Islander ZK-LYP moved briefly from Air Chathams to Great Barrier Airlines from 23 June until 20 July....

Originair Jetstream 31 ZK-JSH

Originair's Jetstream 31 ZK-JSH has now completed its transition into the new operator's livery with titles added in recent days. It is seen here departing Wellington 30 July on a training detail which ultimately saw it arrive at Nelson.

29 July 2015

A brief stop at HLZ

Driving back to Hamilton on 24 July 2015 I saw something interesting in the circuit

Ryan ST-M S2 ZK-ABC - what a magnificent aircraft!

CTC Aviation's Diamond DA20 ZK-CSG was going out on a mission...
...while the Waikato Aero Club's ZK-WCD was returning

28 July 2015

Comfortable Airline Getting Ready for Take Off

Originair owner Robert Inglis, left, Brent Hill, National Aircraft Interiors and Matt Ashton, RepairCraft with new leather seats that will be fitted in to the Originair, Jetstream 32 aircraft at Nelson Airport.

A Nelson-based aircraft interior design company have come up with a custom seat product especially for Originair. National Aircraft Interiors were given the brief for Originair's Jetstream aircraft which will soon be flying from Nelson to Palmerston North. Designed for passenger comfort, the seats have a modern look and feel with an added soft layer on the seat, said sales and marketing manager for National Aircraft Interiors John Hill. "Originair has chosen a high quality leather created for its durability and passenger comfort." Hill said he the company usually worked with large international airlines. "It's nice to be doing something for a New Zealand company. Passengers are going to be impressed when they see these aircraft. They're really smart." The seats are made of high quality leather. Industry standard aviation leather comes in a variety of quality ranges. The leather is expected to last for up to eight years, depending on maintenance. The leather has a modern matte finish that follows automotive industry trends. Hill said the automotive industry was ahead of the aviation industry in respect of comfort and design due to the sheer size of the industry and its research and development budget, and so is used as a source for design trends in the aircraft industry. The seats also feature yellow stitching on charcoal leather that matches Originair's brand. National Aircraft Interiors is an international company based in Nelson, serving the airline industry in New Zealand, Australia and the United States with an office in Los Angeles. Originair was established by Robert Inglis, who founded Air Nelson and then ran Origin Pacific Airways, which collapsed in 2006. It will fly Nelson- Wellington and Nelson-Palmerston North. Its first flight from Nelson to Palmerston North is scheduled for Wednesday August 12.

27 July 2015

15 minutes at Tauranga

I managed a quick drive by of Tauranga on 23 July 2015 before heading home...

On the taxi was Pitts S2-E Special ZK-ELI
Desperation shot number 1 - Guimbal Cabri G2 ZK-IIH hover taxis to the hangar
Moved down to be parked out Sunair is still engineless Cessna 425 ZK-LHL
A new one for me was Tecnam Astore UL ZK-MSV
Still to be repainted... Bombardier Q300 ZK-NEK off to Christchurch... Auckland was closed at the time so three Q300s and Air Chathams' Convair ZK-CIB were on the ramp
Desperation shot number 2 - Ultravia Pelican PL ZK-PPL on takeoff... I arrived a minute too late before it taxied so full zoom, heavily cropped
Island Air operate Cessna 172 ZK-WGE on its shuttle flights to Motiti Island

26 July 2015

Late afternoon at Gisborne

I had 30 minutes at Gisborne before my flight to Wellington on Monday 20 July 2015 and managed to capture a few bits and pieces...

Sunair 13 Romeo, aka Piper Aztec ZK-DIR, departing for Rotorua
Sunair's Cessna 172 ZK-DPN had just arrived from somewhere.
My ride to Wellington, Air New Zealand Link Beech 1900 ZK-EAR.
Air Napier's Piper Pa32 Cherokee 6 about to do its engine run ups before its courier flight to Wairoa and Napier
Arriving from Auckland Air New Zealand Link Bombardier Q300 ZK-NED

25 July 2015

Jetting into Auckland

I had just over an hour at Auckland International last weekend and caught the following arriving into the City of Sails on 19 July 2015

Singapore Airlines Cargo's Boeing 747-400 Freighter 9V-SFG
Also from the Singapore Airlines' stable, Boeing 777-300 9V-SWE
Air Calin's colourful Airbus 320 F-OZNC
Soon to be disappearing, Air New Zealand Boeing 767-300 ZK-NCL
Repainted and not so colourful Air New Zealand's Airbus 320 ZK-OJR

24 July 2015

Recent Shots of Air Ambulances

After weeks of little or no plane spotting I have managed a bit of time at Auckland, Gisborne, Tauranga and Hamilton airports in recent days...

Last month I got Starship Hospital's Beech Super King Air ZK-SSH at Ardmore on 27 June 2015
The Taranaki Air Ambulance Trust's Cessna 421 Golden Eagle ZK-TAM at Auckland on  19 July 2015