11 October 2021

Research at Alexandra - Goldfields Air


While in Alexandra I was able to score a couple of hours at the museum to do some research on the local air services. An airline that has always had particular interest to me was Goldfields Air I have updated my post with more information and photographs.

See : http://3rdlevelnz.blogspot.com/2010/09/goldfields-air-alexandras-airline.html

10 October 2021

Pegasus Aviation - Your Own Private Airliner


The Pegasus School of Aviation was formed by Wally Christopherson in late 1966  and was licensed to operate flight training from Tauranga. Previously Wally had been the chief flying Instructor for the Tauranga Aero Club. 

Bay of Plenty Times, date unknown

A Pegasus School of Aviation Victa Airtourer ZK-CLF at Tauranga

On the 5th of September 1968 the Pegasus School of Aviation was given a licence for air charter services from Tauranga.

In late 1971 Piper PA32 Cherokee 6 ZK-DEF was subsequently added to its fleet and in mid-1972 the Pegasus School of Aviation was authorised to vary the terms of Air Service Licence 635 and operate an air taxi services from Tauranga with one five-passenger Piper PA32 Cherokee 6 and one one-passenger Airtourer 150. .

An undated photo of the Pegasus School of Aviation's Piper PA32 Cherokee 6 ZK-DEF at Blenheim's Omaka Aerodrome

In 1972 Pegasus applied for an air taxi service. Statistics given to the Ministry of Transport give a glimpse of the operations in the years ended 31 March and for 1972, 31 January;

Training Hours -  (1968) 646; (1969) 1766; (1970) 1708; (1971) 1204; (1972) 1368

Charter Hours - (1969) 59; (1970) 130; (1971) 105; (1972) 98

Scenic Flight Hours - (1969) 12; (1970) 46; (1971) 53; (1972) 78  

Piper Aztec ZK-DJG joined Pegasus' fleet in 1979. 

The Tauranga Aero Club, who had always been Pegasus School of Aviation's big competitor, bought out the company in September 1980. The training business and fleet was subsumed into the Aero Club. At this time the Tauranga Aero Club's commercial arm was known as Tauranga Aerial Charter but the Pegasus charter fleet, which included at that time Piper Cherokee 6 ZK-DEF and Piper Aztec ZK-DJG, remained separate, initially being operating as Pegasus Air Charter and later being renamed as Pegasus Aviation.

Piper Aztec ZK-DJG wearing Pegasus Air Charter titles at Tauranga

In 1984 Eagle Air doubled in size adding three Piper Navajo Chieftains and a second Embraer Bandeirante to its fleet. This enabled the company to establish a "hub and spoke" operation with Hamilton and Palmerston North being major hubs and flights timed to connect to similar timed arrivals and departure to other central North Island destinations. This timetable started on the 2nd of April 1984 and it enabled Tauranga passengers to connect at Hamilton to connecting flights to Gisborne, Napier, Wanganui, New Plymouth or Wellington. 

From mid-1984 Eagle Air chartered Pegasus Aviation to operate the Tauranga-Hamilton flights offering a much better timetable for passengers travelling to and from Tauranga. Pegasus Aviation normally used the Piper Aztec, ZK-DJG. for these flights which operated twice daily on weekdays. Pegasus Aviation continued to operate these services until the 25th of October 1985. 

Pegasus Aviation's Piper Aztec ZK-DJG at Auckland on 6 August 1984

Pegasus Aviation's Piper PA32-260 Cherokee 6 ZK-DEF at Greymouth on 20 October 1985

With the loss of the Eagle Air service Pegasus Aviation started to wind down. The Aztec was sold in February 1986 and the Piper Cherokee 6 was sold in November 1988.

Aircraft Operated Included:

AESL Airtourer Super 150
ZK-DBE (c/n A554)

Grumman American AA-5 Traveler
ZK-DIA (c/n AA5-0204)
ZK-DLH (c/n AA5-0750)

Grumman American AA-5B Tiger 
ZK-DLK (c/n AA5B-0401)

Grumman American AA-5A Cheetah
ZK-DLL (c/n AA5A-0409)

Morane Saulnier MS880B Rallye Club
ZK-CCS (c/n 5230)

Piper PA-23-250 Aztec C
ZK-DJG (c/n 27-2638)

Piper PA-28-140 Cherokee
ZK-CNK (c/n 28-21097)

Piper PA-32-260E Cherokee Six
ZK-DEF (c/n 32-7200007)

Victa Airtourer 100
ZK-CLF (c/n 121)

09 October 2021

Research at Alexandra - Air Express


While in Alexandra I was able to score a couple of hours at the museum to do some research on the local air services. An operation I didn't have much on was Air Express and I have been able to update my post with a little more info to give a little more flavour to this short lived air service.

See : http://3rdlevelnz.blogspot.com/2010/09/air-express-calling-at-alexandra-on.html

08 October 2021

Alexandra Action

A classic Piper PA28 Cherokee 140, ZK-CUQ, at Alexandra on 3 October 2021 

Mainland Air's Cessna 172 ZK-ETT at Alexandra on 3 October 2021

Built for SPANZ, Alexandra Airport terminal on 3 October 2021


07 October 2021

Taieri Action - Way Back


Sister blog NZ Civil Aircraft had a great post of NAC operations at Taieri in 1954 earlier this year, see http://nzcivair.blogspot.com/2021/05/remembering-when-1954-taieri.html. All that remains now is the old NAC hangar that began life as Union Airways hangar... 

NAC hangar, Taieri, 2 October 2021. Isn't it great that it is still standing!

And it was here, on the eastern side of the field, that NAC had its first terminal before the move to the western side.

Dakota aircraft Popotea, ZK-APB, New Zealand National Airways Corporation, Taieri Aerodrome, 4 November 1947. Whites Aviation Ltd: Photographs. Ref: WA-10591-F. Alexander Turnbull Library, Wellington, New Zealand. /records/23216956

New Zealand National Airways Corporation Lodestar AKX, Kereru, at Taieri Aerodrome with Dunedin Taxi bus, 12 November 1947. Whites Aviation Ltd: Photographs. Ref: WA-10714-F. Alexander Turnbull Library, Wellington, New Zealand. /records/22818590

06 October 2021

Taieri Action - Helicopters

HeliOtago's Eurocopter AS 350 B3 Ecureuil ZK-IOJ..

and Airbus Helicopters MBB-BK117 D-2 ZK-IDH were both out on missions from Tairei on 1 October 2021


05 October 2021

Something for Hawkes Bay Spotters to look out for

Heading to Napier this Saturday, the 9th of October are three Originair BAe Jetstreams filled with Tasman Mako fans for the Ranfurly Shield challenge against Hawkes Bay. 

The Tasman Mako will makes its third challenge (2008, 2012) for “the log o’wood” on Saturday 9 October, 4.35pm kick-off in Napier.

The TRU has negotiated a same day return package including charter flight, match marquee hospitality and transfers for $600 inclusive.

The day’s schedule is ~

1.00pm - depart Nelson, arrive Napier 2pm, bus transfer to McLean Park

3.30pm – Entry to marquee hospitality with food (2 x buns filled with hot pulled pork, salads and condiments), alcoholic and non-alcoholic beverages 

6.30pm – an hour after full-time we depart marquee, and transfer to Napier Airport

8.30pm – depart Napier, arrive Nelson 9.30pm.

Taieri Action - Sport Aviation

A couple more new ones for me, Vans RV-4 ZK-RVI on departure from Taieri on 1 October 2021

Foxcon Aviation Terrier 200 ZK-SOD's engine was having some work done it at Taieri on 1 October 2021


04 October 2021

Taieri Action - Cessnas

The Otago Aero Club's Cessna 152 was in the circuit at Taieri on 1 October 2021

My first photo of Cessna 182 Skylane ZK-OAD at Taieri on 1 October 2021

Even though its been on the register since 1973 this was my first photo of Cessna 177 Cardinal ZK-DDK, taken at Taieri on 2 October 2021


03 October 2021

Taieri Action - Maules

 I also love Maules...

On 1 October 2021 Maule MX-7-180A ZK-MXM was doing some local flying...

On 2 October 2021 I caught Maule M-6-235 ZK-MTP on departure

02 October 2021

Taieri Action - Cessna 185s

A couple of Cessna 185s were out and about at Taieri on 1 October 2021... 
I think the 185 would have to be my favourite Cessna type




01 October 2021

70 year air service to Stewart Island


Today marks the 70th anniversary of air services to Stewart Island.

On the 1st of October 1951, Amphibian Airways began a regular air service to Stewart Island from Invercargill. Over the years the service has passed down from one operator to another and from an amphibian air service to a land-based air service. 

The first air service is recorded here... 


Link to the various operators that have flown to Stewart Island can be found here...


29 September 2021

A quick zip around the airport...


A quick zip around the airport scored a new one for me today, Cessna 185 ZK-NRC taken at Hamilton on 29 September 2021

28 September 2021

Air Services Resume

Sounds Air announced yesterday on their Facebook page that as of Tuesday 27 September 2021 Picton and Paraparaumu services have resumed after being paused due to the last lockdown.


26 September 2021

What Islander is this?

Someone sent me a photo yesterday of a Britten Norman Islander airframe that had arrived at Classic Flyers in Tauranga with, on one side, some Great Barrier Airlines markings. The question was, which Islander was it?

The answer is it is Britten-Norman BN2A-21 Islander c/n 759, which carried the markings ZK-KTR, but was never registered and was used for spares as far as I can tell. 

I'm told it will I understand will be in an RAF scheme. This is the first Islander to be preserved in New Zealand.

Note to Bring Home Our Birds - You need to ensure you get an Islander at some point... They have been (and still are) in continuous NZ service for over 50 years!

Unregistered BN Islander ZK-KTR at North Shore on 26 January 2009

The NZ Civil Aircraft blog has more details... http://nzcivair.blogspot.com/2011/06/new-colour-scheme-for-islander-zk-ktr.html