Nellis AFB

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gary7890
Posts: 135
Joined: Tue 02 Sep 2008, 6:22 pm

Nellis AFB

Post by gary7890 »

I will be traveling to Vegas and I am hoping to stop off at Nellis for a few hours on the way in. Any info or tips of best places for photos would be greatly appreciated. I will miss the red flag that ends 12th june by a few days but still hoping to see some activity.

Thanks

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Fumbles
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Location: Vancouver Canada Again

Re: Nellis AFB

Post by Fumbles »

Brave person to be going to Vegas in June/July! :sweat: As far as places to try and get photos, there really is only two spots. The Speedway on Las Vegas Blvd between Gates 3 on 7. For take-offs gate 6 and 7 give the best topsides for the Aggressors which usually bank in over the racetrack. For landings if they aircraft are landing on rwys 21L and 21R you should place yourself between gates 3 and 5. Now if they are launching on Rwys 3L and 3R your real only choice is Cheyenne Ave between Betty Ln and Dervy Lane. But I have also tried out a new spot for some topside recoveries on 3L and that is on a little hill at Nellis Meadows Park just down the road on Cheyenne Ave.

As a side note... If you have not been there before, Please stay on the Speedway side of Las Vegas Blvd. Nellis base police will visit you if you stop on the Nellis side of the road. Nellis police have also started removing people from the fence side of Cheyenne as well.

As far as flying goes.. Since you'll just miss Green Flag and the next Red Flag will not be until July 13th, it could be pretty quiet although the base Aggressors usually launch at least once a day during none exercise weeks. Although you may be there during JFEX work up so you may get a lot of transport and support aircraft.

Enjoy the trip and for that time of year.... Bring lots of water! :cool:

gary7890
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Joined: Tue 02 Sep 2008, 6:22 pm

Re: Nellis AFB

Post by gary7890 »

Thanks for the info, I have checked the area out on google earth, so is it ok to just park at the side of the road near the speedway ? on speedway side, and is it a safe area around the industrial estate the other side of the base?

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Fumbles
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Location: Vancouver Canada Again

Re: Nellis AFB

Post by Fumbles »

gary7890 wrote:Thanks for the info, I have checked the area out on google earth, so is it ok to just park at the side of the road near the speedway ? on speedway side, and is it a safe area around the industrial estate the other side of the base?


Sorry for the delay in response.. Yeap you can park along the road near the speedway. If aircraft are flying, you will probably see a few cars parked there. The Industrial area is safe.... I wouldn't stray in there in the middle of the night though. :ghost:

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747woody
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Joined: Mon 01 Sep 2008, 9:53 am

Re: Nellis AFB

Post by 747woody »

Have a look here:

http://www.fencecheck.com/content/index ... Nellis_AFB

and here:

http://www.nellis.af.mil/library/flyingoperations.asp

If you keep an eye on this you'll get a feel for what's there:

https://www.flickr.com/photos/eor1/

Guessing that you'll be there mid June? There's a Green Flag that finishes on June 12th, GF is a close air support exercise and usually involves just one unit, and could be anything taking part - A-10s, B-1s, F-15Es, F-16s, one just finished and had UAE Mirage 2000s that are/were still there from the last Red Flag.

However the Weapons School Advanced Integration phase (used to be called Mission Employment - ME - it's the end of course graduation exercise) starts on the 18th, and that usually sees a lot of aircraft, mostly but not exclusively from the other Weapons Squadrons, deploying to Nellis, so you may be in luck!

As Fumbles says, don't park on the base side of the road, and take plenty of water, it'll be hot! (there is a Wallmart opposite the gate for supplies!)

gary7890
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Joined: Tue 02 Sep 2008, 6:22 pm

Re: Nellis AFB

Post by gary7890 »

Thank you both for all the info :)

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747woody
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Joined: Mon 01 Sep 2008, 9:53 am

Re: Nellis AFB

Post by 747woody »

The tricky bit is deciding where to go!

It depends what you're after. If there's a northerly wind, landings on the 3s are likely so if you want landing shots Cheyenne is the place to be, morning and afternoon.

Image

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If you go for departure shots from the 3s (ie up at the Speedway) they'll be back lit until mid afternoon, although anything doing the Flex departure could give you better opportunities.

Image

Generally the locals turn earlier than the visitors, so Gate 6 or 7 for locals Flexing and maybe 8 or 9 for visitors. A scanner helps, as they only get cleared for the Flex as they get their take off clearance. Generally it's aircraft going to the western side of the ranges (Aggressors for Red Flags) and R2508 (Green Flag, and the F-35s seem to be going there) that Flex. It's not unknown for B-1s to Flex!

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If it's a southerly wind and they're departing off the 21s, go to Cheyenne for departure shots. They may be back lit until mid afternoon but they can be quite dramatic as they have to turn right shortly after take off.

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However some turn inside the fence, so it doesn't always work! For landings the Speedway is the place to be but the big gamble is where do you stand. Where ever you go you may be lucky, or not. You may get a flight of four where you look at the belly of the first one, the second is perfect and the next two seem to go to Utah before they turn in. Or you look at four bellys, or four are perfect or all four go to Utah! Gates 3 to 4 are generally the best bet, but no guarantees.

Image

The preferred runways seem to be the 3s for departures and the 21s for recoveries. If it's quiet they may do that for everything, despite having a 'runway in use'. It's also not unkown for aircraft to launch in one direction whilst others are landing in the other direction!

It can be challenging and very frustrating (outside and inside!!), but when it works it can be very good, and the best light is late in the day in mid summer.

Look forward to seeing how you get on! Oh, and if there's not a Red Flag on don't expect to see many other people there! I was there last week and I was alone all day!
Last edited by 747woody on Thu 09 Apr 2015, 4:15 pm, edited 5 times in total.

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747woody
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Re: Nellis AFB

Post by 747woody »

Worth having a look at McCarran as well:

http://www.fencecheck.com/forums/viewto ... 0&start=20

gary7890
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Joined: Tue 02 Sep 2008, 6:22 pm

Re: Nellis AFB

Post by gary7890 »

Thank you Woody that's given me a lot of helpful info :)

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