After enduring what has been the worst winter I have ever seen as far as snow and lack of ‘positive’ temperature is concerned, I am really excited about the next few weeks and months.

For those of you who are familiar with my site  you’ll know that Plane Spotting is a passion of mine and in most cases my travels and vacations have their foundations based on the desire to photograph as many aircraft as possible.     To this end, I typically have a normal rotation of my regular airports that I visit during the year and I try to add a few new ones along the way.

So with the last of the snow finally gone, along with serious weather related cancellations  and other ‘irrops’ thanks to winter, I finally can be on my way out the door with cameras, lenses and memory cards in hand…..

Starting next week, I’m off to Anchorage where I’ll spend a couple of days standing along side runway 32 and watch a varied collection of long haul cargo arrivals and departures from EVA, UPS, Panalpina, Atlas, Fedex, Korean and others along with Alaskan specialists Everts and Era.   Last year I made the trip to ‘ANC’ in January and had to contend with a day with blizzard conditions as well as a day that was absolutely perfect.  This year I thought better of it, and decided on a spring visit and looks like the weather will be perfect.

Some examples of what is possible in Anchorage:




Then things really start to pick for my travel calendar as I head to Europe in the first part of May.   It starts in earnest when I connect to my LH flight to Frankfurt from  Washington DC  where I’ll have a chance to spot from Lufthansa’s Senator Lounge.  The lounge overlooks the tarmac between terminals and provides a good opportunity to see a few international ‘heavies’.

Once in FRA, I’ll spend a day visiting friends at Lufthansa as well as spending some quality time on FRA’s excellent observation deck before finding  a duck or pork knuckle for dinner.

From there, it’s on to Hamburg for the Port Festival and HAM-DO.

While in Hamburg I’ll finally have my first ride on Lufthansa’s Junkers Ju52 when it flies over the opening parade of the Festival.   In addition, HAM-DO will take participants behind the scenes at Airbus as well as Lufthansa Technik.   No doubt, some outstanding photo opps are waiting.


Lufthansa’s Junkers Ju52 flies over the Hamburg Port Festival

After 2 days in HAM, it’s a quick run to Istanbul for a day in order to pick up a gift for a certain someone.  I’ve built in a long layover in Munich in between flights from HAM to IST, which gives me plenty of time to take a photo or 2.   Istanbul also presents spotting opportunities albeit through green-hued windows.  In this case, the subject of the photos are more important than the quality.   IST is full of unique carriers that I normally do not get to see, so several hours have been built in for spotting in IST.

From Istanbul it’s to Zurich via Vienna where I will spend 2 days dedicated to nothing but plane spotting in and around ‘ZRH’.   The airport is perhaps the most spotter friendly airport in the world with 2 dedicated observation areas within the Airport perimeter as well as several spotter friendly areas around the airport.  I hope 2 days will be enough!  A big thanks to Twitter’s @easyspotting along with Tis, whose website,, provides a fantastic resource and  great advice for spotting in Zurich.

I had a few hours on a recent trip to Zurich which convinced me to go back.   Here was some of my motivation:



I caught her through a window last time (notice the reflection around the engines?)...This time, I'll be outside waiting for her.

I caught her through a window last time…This time, I’ll be outside waiting for her…

From ZRH, I head for home via Frankfurt where again, I’ve built in time specifically for spotting before boarding my LH flight back to the states.  In all, 8 days, 6 cities and plenty of plane spotting opportunities.  I can’t think of a better way to see Europe! 🙂

The calendar only gets busier….a couple weeks after this trip, it’s off to Seattle to see what new toys are coming out of Boeing’s Everett facility.

Winter is slowly becoming a distant nightmare of a memory!