31 May 2011

Golden Bay Seneca Almost Ready for Service

Getting ready to head to Golden Bay is Golden Bay Air's new Seneca, ZK-ZAG taken at Ardmore on 31 May 2011. Photo : S Lowe
Due later this week to head south to its new home in Takaka is Golden Bay Air's Piper Pa34-220T Seneca III ZK-ZAG (c/n 34-8333002).

Bob Kerr has sent me the following information on its previous ownership...

As N8239Q
00/11/1982 Piper Aircraft Corp, Vero Beach, Florida

00/01/1983 Piedmont Aviation Inc, Winston Salem, North Carolina
00/03/1984 Carp Co Ltd, Fort Washington, Pennsylvania
12/05/1989 Registration cancelled

Reregistered C-GOKS
12/06/1989 816537 Ontario Inc, Burlington, Ontario
13/07/2010 Registration cancelled

Reregistered C-GOKO
13/07/2010 816537 Ontario Inc, Burlington, Ontario…re-registered
29/11/2010 Registration cancelled

Reregistered ZK-ZAG
17/02/2011 Golden Bay Air Ltd, Takaka

Golden Bay Air have ramped up the number of flights they are offering between Takaka and Wellington in the winter months with daily flights Sunday through Friday with an additional flight on both Wednesdays and Fridays. The airline also operates a daily on demand service between Takaka and Karamea.

In addition to the Seneca the company also operates Piper Pa32R-301 Saratoga ZK-ZIG and Piper Pa28-181 Archer.

Congratulations to Richard and the Golden Bay Air team on the new arrival! 

Chatham Islands Express

While sorting through some photos I came across this shot of Air Charter (Chch) Ltd's Piper Aztec ZK-DHB with small Chatham Island Express titles under the rear window... I vaguely remember hearing about them Would anyone have any info on Chatham Islands Express? If so please email me at westland831@gmail.com  - Cheers, Steve

Piper Pa23-250 Aztec D at Hokitika on 14 December 1991. Photo : S Lowe

30 May 2011

Seneca getting ready to ZAG?

Golden Bay Air's Piper PA34 Seneca ZK-ZAG seems to be nearing completion and was caught in its start of semi undress at Ardmore 30 May.

29 May 2011

Toll's TLE on the Move

Wayne Grant captured Toll  Priority's Boeing 737-300 Freighter departing for Brisbane today, the 29th of May 2011. Photos : W Grant

Ticket to Adventure and Tranquility - A Photo Essay on Stewart Island Flights

Bruce Gavin has written this photo essay on Stewart Island Flights after his recent travel on New Zealand's southern most airline.

South East Air Ltd was formed in 1993 when Raymond Hector began an air service based at Invercargill flying Cessna 185E ZK-JEM into the remote beaches and airstrips of Foveaux Strait islands such as Codfish Island and Stewart Island. Flights often had to be timed according to favourable tide conditions. In May 2000 South East Air Ltd took over Southern Air (1997) Ltd the previous operator on the Invercargill/Stewart Island route. This included rights to be the sole commercial operator to Ryans Creek Airstrip, Stewart Island, two Britten Norman BN2A-26 aircraft (ZK-FWZ and ZK-FXE), airport terminal space at Invercargill Airport, the airline depot (and Kiwi Post agency) at Oban, Stewart Island, and associated passenger shuttle vans and equipment. The thrice-daily return flights from Invercargill to Ryans Creek form the basis from which this very flexible and adaptable small airline fulfils the needs of all types of traveller to this beautiful area of New Zealand.


South East Air Ltd/Stewart Island Flights Chief Executive Officer Raymond Hector and Cessna 185E ZK-JEM in the hangar at Invercargill Airport on 13 April 2011. Raymond and ZK-JEM left shortly after the photo was taken for Codfish Island. (Photo: F.B.Gavin)
A through the wire view of ZK-JEM. (Photo: F.B.Gavin)
Approaching Rakiura/Stewart Island aboard Britten Norman BN2A-26 Islander ZK-FWZ. A smooth flight of about 12 minutes just reaching 1000ft above sea level. (Photo: F.B.Gavin)
The landing approach at Ryans Creek, Stewart Island as viewed from the front right hand seat of ZK-FWZ. In the centre foreground is the roadway from Oban. Parked in the aircraft turning area at the near end of the actual airstrip are Islander ZK-FXE (left) and Piper PA-32-260 ZK-DIV (right). (Photo: F.B.Gavin)
ZK-FXE at Ryans Creek. The aircraft had flown over part of a tour group earlier on 13 April. It was then tethered until its next flight (to take the group back) to Invercargill the following evening. (Photo: F.B.Gavin)
Piper PA-32-260 ZK-DIV about to depart Ryans Creek to assist Cessna 185E ZK-JEM to carry passengers off Codfish Island while the tide was out. (Photo: F.B.Gavin)

Departure from Stewart Island on 15 April, 2011. The photo shows the Stewart Island Flights’ Depot at Oban. This is the check-in point for all travellers on the airline’s services from Stewart Island as well as serving as the Island’s Post Shop. Passengers, baggage and freight are then transported by van up to Ryans Creek airstrip.  (Photo: F.B.Gavin)
The quick and efficient transfer of passengers from/to Islander ZK-FWZ at Ryans Creek. Another full load with the overload of three passengers having flown out a few minutes earlier on Piper PA-32 ZK-DIV (Photo: F.B.Gavin)
Airborne over Oban and Halfmoon Bay on a very murky morning. It was very soon into the cloud for another very smooth flight with only a very occasional glimpse of the white caps on Foveaux Strait. Very pleased we weren’t on the ferry somewhere down below. (Photo: F.B.Gavin)

The snug cabin of ZK-FWZ from the rear row of seats. (Photo: F.B.Gavin)

South East Air’s fifth aircraft is Piper PA-32-300 ZK-RTS. It is here seen outside the maintenance hangar at Invercargill Airport on 13 April 2011. (Photo: F.B.Gavin)
A profile of Stewart Island Flights can be found at http://3rdlevelnz.blogspot.com/2010/05/nzs-southern-most-airline-part-4.html

28 May 2011

NAC Check In Now Open

A new display at Tauranga aviation museum, Classic Flyers, officially opened on Wednesday with the exhibit featuring the history of former domestic New Zealand airline NAC. About 100 former NAC employees are gathering at the museum for a luncheon and unveiling of the permanent exhibit.

27 May 2011

Aircraft Odd Spots

One aircraft going to the bottom of the sea...


One plane being dug out of the ground...


Pulling an airport from the sea... and planez hitting the ground


The modern planes of 1964...


Putting together your own plane...


26 May 2011

Fly My Ardmore Sky

Mike Condon captured Fly My Sky's BN Islander going for a test flight at Ardmore after maintainance on the 25th of May 2011

Record Number of Commercial Flight to Wellington

Following Mike Condon's post last week on record numbers for NAC through Christchurch
http://3rdlevelnz.blogspot.com/2011/05/record-numbers.html here is another record setting day for Wellington for Christmas Eve 1938!

A record for the number of commercial aircraft using a New Zealand aerodrome in one day will probably be established at Rongotai, Wellington, next Saturday. The Christmas bookings are so heavy this year that many extra trips between Wellington and other centres will be necessary to cope with the passenger traffic offering. So far, 21 Cook Strait Airways machines are scheduled to arrive at Rongotai on Saturday and 21 are scheduled to depart. In addition, Union Airways will have five Lockheed Electras arriving and five departing. This will mean a total of 52 airliners arriving at and departing from Rongatai. Between them the aircraft will carry more than 352 passengers.

Source : NZ Herald, 21 December 1938

25 May 2011

Sunair-Tauranga Aero Club Partnership

Western Bay of Plenty aviation enthusiasts will be able to soar among the clouds thanks to a partnership between Tauranga Aero Club and local flight training organisation Sunair Aviation. Tauranga Aero Club's previous partner, Air Discovery, relocated to Auckland last month. To operate, the club needs an air transport certificate but they do not have one. Tauranga Aero Club president David Campbell approached a number of local operators but said Tauranga-based Sunair Aviation were best suited for the job. The partnership between the two organisations was finalised at the beginning of this month. "[This partnership] means we can continue to provide ongoing services, carry on with everything we do, such as coastguard search and rescue exercises, but it also offers the path for aspiring pilots to become directly involved with an airline. "We can also offer flight training, private pilot's and commercial pilot's licences, multi-engine and instrument ratings," Mr Campbell said. Tauranga-based Sunair Aviation operates a fleet of nine twin-engine aeroplanes between 10 provincial cities in New Zealand. The company, privately owned by Tauranga couple Daniel and Bev Power, began operating 23 years ago. Mrs Power said the staff at Sunair Aviation were excited about the opportunity to work with Tauranga Aero Club in a mutually beneficial relationship. "The advantages are quite significant for their staff and the flight training cadets and this will give pilots at the Aero Club the opportunity to get involved with Sunair Aviation for airline jobs. "Tauranga Aero Club will provide the training to pilots and once they've reached their required flying hours, they can potentially proceed with our aircraft, as they will already have experience within the company," Mrs Power said. "It's a win-win situation for both of us. "It's really good to have the Aero Club on board... it is early days but we don't foresee any problems and we're looking forward to what this partnership will bring."

24 May 2011

Diverted to Ardmore Due Fog

Tuesday is my day off and my intention to spend some time at Auckland International was thwarted so instead I went to Ardmore and spent a couple of hours enjoying the sunshine and activity. The following is the more interesting stuff I photographed...

The award for the most classic colour scheme has to go to Piper Pa24-250 Commanche ZK-BAZ that was busy in the circuit. Photo : Taken by S Lowe at Ardmore on 24 May 2011

Once an "airliner"... Cessna 172N Skyhawk ZK-EOX used to run the Motueka-Takaka newspaper service with passengers flown as room was available... the service appeared in the Air New Zealand timetable... http://3rdlevelnz.blogspot.com/2010/06/air-nz-announce-departure-of-flight.html. Photo : Taken by S Lowe at Ardmore on 24 May 2011

The only Warbird in action today was Nanchang CJ-6 ZK-FRU. Photo : Taken by S Lowe at Ardmore on 24 May 2011
Registered to Wellington's Volare Aviation Ltd is Robinson R44 Clipper II. Photo : Taken by S Lowe at Ardmore on 24 May 2011

The award for the most exotic aircraft photographed today is Agusta A119 ZK-ITP. Photo : Taken by S Lowe at Ardmore on 24 May 2011

Vans RV7 ZK-LVA rolls on runway 03. Photo : Taken by S Lowe at Ardmore on 24 May 2010

Heading home to Whitianga was MBB Bölkow BO 209 Monsun. Photo : Taken by S Lowe at Ardmore on 24 May 2011

Added to the NZ register on April Fools Day this year was Cessna T182T Skylane ZK-RGZ. Photo : Taken by S Lowe at Ardmore on 24 May 2011

The award for the most grunty machine of the day goes to Cessna 421C Golden Eagle ZK-STV. Photo : Taken by S Lowe at Ardmore on 24 May 2011

While the award for the most unfortunate registration has to go to Ardmore Flying School's Cessna 172R ZK-TAX. Photo : Taken by S Lowe at Ardmore on 24 May 2011

And the one I was looking for... A desperation shot of Golden Bay Air's new Piper Pa34 Seneca ZK-ZAG as it gets ever closer to being ready for service... I can see I am going to need to get a ladder to get photos of it with the titles visible. Photo : Taken by S Lowe at Ardmore on 24 May 2011

23 May 2011

Another King Air for the New Zealand Register

Wayne Grant captured the arrival of New Zealand's newest Beech C90 King Air, N90NZ, at Auckland this afternoon. This adds to a growing number of this type in use in New Zealand.

Beech N90NZ at Auckland on 23 May 2011. Photo : W Grant
Beech N90NZ at Auckland on 23 May 2011. Photo : W Grant
Beech N90NZ at Auckland on 23 May 2011. Photo : W Grant
Beech N90NZ at Auckland on 23 May 2011. Photo : W Grant
 Despite there being so many Beech C90 Kings Air's in the country, only ZK-UPA has ever been used (to date) for airline service, that being used by United Pacific Airlines not only only charter work but also, at times, on the Auckland-Kaitaia run in the early 1980s. 

United Pacific Airlines Beech C90 King at Ardmore in September 1981. Photo : S Lowe
Other operators include Air Wanganui who use two King Airs for charter and air ambulance work...

Beech King Air ZK-MKG in its previous colour scheme at Wellington on 13 September 2006. Photo : S Lowe
Air Wanganui's ZK-SNM rolling at Wanganui on 7 December 2010. Photo : S Lowe
Based out of Ardmore is Beech King Air N890LG

N890LG at Ardmore on 16 January 2011. Photo : S Lowe

Recent Outings for the Camera

The Courier Post Boeing 737-200QC ZK-NQC was sitting by Skycare at Auckland on the 16th of May 2011. Photo : S Lowe
A few days later it had moved to the Air Freight apron losing its titles on the way... Wayne Grant captured it at Auckland on the 21st of June 2011. Photo : W Grant
Dark and dingy... my ride to Christchurch, ZK-SJB... a reminder to make sure I get nice photos of SJB and SJE (my ride home) without the Pacific Wave. Taken at Auckland on 20 May 2011. Photo : S Lowe
Royal Brunei's Boeing 777 V8-BLD taxiing for departure to Brunei on the 20th of May 2011. Photo : S Lowe
"The competition" Jetstar's Airbus 320 VH-VQR heading off to Christchurch moments before my flight to Christchurch was called. Taken at Auckland on 20 May 2011. Photo : S Lowe
Cessna 172A ZK-BWZ was scooting around the circuit and local flying at North Shore on a dull 22nd of May 2011. Photo : S Lowe
Helipro's Kawasaki BK-117 popped into North Shore on the 22nd of May 2011. Photo : S Lowe
No, it's not a Bell 47... Canadian Home Rotors Safari ZK-IJE was hovering around the helicopter training area at North Shore on 22 May 2011. Photo : S Lowe
Vans RV-7 ZK-NVS was doing some local flying. North Shore on the 22nd of May 2011. Photo : S Lowe
A desparation shot of Pitts Model 12 ZK-PTS before it was pulled back into the hangar... taken at North Shore on 22 May 2011. Photo : S Lowe
Ex Sounds Air Cessna 172P Skyhawk ZK-VCT is now based at North Shore. Photo taken 22nd of May 2011. Photo : S Lowe