USAF 310th FS - Luke AFB, Viper Town USA (air to air)

USAF 310th FS - Luke AFB, Viper Town USA (air to air)

Postby ErikNZ on Sun 12 Jan 2014, 8:28 pm

A while ago, I had the opportunity to fly with the 310th Fighter Squadron, "Tophats", while at Luke AFB. As these images were destined for magazine publications, I could not reveal most of them until that was all sorted - so with some delay I can now finally share some of these!

While having done air to air sorties before, this certainly has been the absolute highlight of my photography 'career'. It took many months of hard work but I was extremely happy that when the day came, everything collaborated. The people at the 310th FS and 56th FW were marvelous and at the last minute we also received permission to fly over the main tourist spots in Arizona at lower altitude (Grand Canyon, Meteor Crater, Red Rocks). Especially GC can be restrictive due to the many civilian fixed wing and helicopter tourism flights in the area.

The 310th FS jet is flown by Lt. Col. Jon "Press" Wheeler, the 310th CO and our F-16D was flown by Lt. Col. Matt "Tooma" Liljenstolpe, the 56th TRS CO.

This flight almost did not happen as the we had a "Redball HUD" (aircraft malfunction) on start-up - leaving us without a HUD an thus a usable plane. As this sortie happened during the midst of the training cycle, we did not have the option to switch to a spare F-16D at short notice. Thanks to the awesome Viper crew chief, our jet was fully up and running in minutes again!

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Thanks for watching - I hope you enjoyed this set of images, it was an absolutely incredible experience. I would like to thank the 310th FS, 56th FW including their awesome Public Affairs Team, SAF/PA and the mysterious high ranked Pentagon officer who signed off on this flight. :) Special thanks to Lt. Col. Wheeler (310th FS CO), Lt.Col. Liljenstolpe (56th TRS CO and my pilot) and the 310th FS Life Support Shop. You all seriously rock :rock:
ErikNZ

Re: USAF 310th FS - Luke AFB, Viper Town USA (air to air)

Postby Hasboman on Sun 12 Jan 2014, 8:40 pm

You lucky, lucky, lucky man! :wink:

6 in a personal favourite, but they're all fantastic! :drool:
Hasboman

Re: USAF 310th FS - Luke AFB, Viper Town USA (air to air)

Postby Agg on Mon 13 Jan 2014, 10:52 am

Fantastic, and I'm sure you already know how lucky you are ;)
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Re: USAF 310th FS - Luke AFB, Viper Town USA (air to air)

Postby toom317 on Mon 13 Jan 2014, 11:56 am

Looks like you had done some prior planning ref the formation shots, and it worked out well. Some nice backdrops as well for the singles. A very good set. :up:
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Re: USAF 310th FS - Luke AFB, Viper Town USA (air to air)

Postby AlexC on Mon 13 Jan 2014, 5:06 pm

Beautiful shots. Love the one over the meteorite crater!
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Re: USAF 310th FS - Luke AFB, Viper Town USA (air to air)

Postby timuss on Mon 13 Jan 2014, 8:31 pm

Stunning you lucky lucky man :cool: :drool: :clap:
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Re: USAF 310th FS - Luke AFB, Viper Town USA (air to air)

Postby Ledhead27 on Mon 13 Jan 2014, 8:33 pm

Great shots, number 4 is my favourite!
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Re: USAF 310th FS - Luke AFB, Viper Town USA (air to air)

Postby Hermann on Tue 14 Jan 2014, 10:29 am

WOW, Erik!! Phantastic!! Like every single shot! Thank you very much for sharing your superb pictures!

Some more flights for you in 2014! :worship:
Hermann
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Re: USAF 310th FS - Luke AFB, Viper Town USA (air to air)

Postby DanBeeden on Tue 14 Jan 2014, 11:50 am

Absolutely superb - lucky you. Beautiful shots each and every one.
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Re: USAF 310th FS - Luke AFB, Viper Town USA (air to air)

Postby boff180 on Tue 14 Jan 2014, 1:11 pm

You lucky so and so, awesome. Love the Crater shot.
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Re: USAF 310th FS - Luke AFB, Viper Town USA (air to air)

Postby yannyfoxx on Tue 14 Jan 2014, 1:40 pm

The crater shot is superb. Having been here at ground level, it's great to see it from this kind of perspective and certainly shows off the scale of the impact. Oh, and the F16 pretty damn impressive too!
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Re: USAF 310th FS - Luke AFB, Viper Town USA (air to air)

Postby ErikNZ on Fri 17 Jan 2014, 10:30 am

Thanks for the kind comments guys! It was an immense thrill looking back at it, but at the time I was mostly rather preoccupied with not getting sick and not wanting to screw this up! :lol:

Here are some more images from that flight.

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ErikNZ

Re: USAF 310th FS - Luke AFB, Viper Town USA (air to air)

Postby Kenny on Fri 17 Jan 2014, 12:21 pm

Absolutely stunning Erik!

Please post the first Crater shot on AFM and I'll share it.

Thanks
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Re: USAF 310th FS - Luke AFB, Viper Town USA (air to air)

Postby sylvancatharsis on Fri 17 Jan 2014, 1:53 pm

Stunning shots and great scenery. I can just hear the Viper pilot over the meteor crater: "Yup, I dropped that." :lol:
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Re: USAF 310th FS - Luke AFB, Viper Town USA (air to air)

Postby Irishaernut on Sat 18 Jan 2014, 8:55 pm

that last one is close and magnificent :clap:
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Re: USAF 310th FS - Luke AFB, Viper Town USA (air to air)

Postby ErikNZ on Sat 18 Jan 2014, 10:40 pm

Irishaernut wrote:that last one is close and magnificent :clap:


Thanks :) We were in the circuit at close formation, I think this was at 24mm or something of that order.
ErikNZ

Re: USAF 310th FS - Luke AFB, Viper Town USA (air to air)

Postby BenLuck on Sun 19 Jan 2014, 6:19 pm

They are all superb but number 2 and 4 are just stunning! :clap: :clap:
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Re: USAF 310th FS - Luke AFB, Viper Town USA (air to air)

Postby ciaranchef on Mon 20 Jan 2014, 12:20 am

Wow, stunning, nothing I can add to the previous comments, amazing set of pictures, Ciaran
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Re: USAF 310th FS - Luke AFB, Viper Town USA (air to air)

Postby SamP on Mon 20 Jan 2014, 4:50 pm

Fantastic selection, images 4 and 9 are stunning!
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Re: USAF 310th FS - Luke AFB, Viper Town USA (air to air)

Postby photojet on Thu 23 Jan 2014, 7:26 pm

wow great set thanks for shareing them. :worship: :worship: :wave:
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