Our days living in Chicago included a lot of bridge raising experiences. The bascule bridges along the Chicago River were a constant source of interest to me and, despite seeing them raise regularly during the spring and fall boat runs, I never got bored of it. There are a bunch of bascule bridges in the Seattle area too. One of the older ones is the bridge across the Montlake Cut near the University of Washington.
I took a bike ride that cross Lake Washington on the 520 bridge and that then turned up to the university and across the Cut. Just as I started across the bridge, the warning tones started. I was already heading across so didn’t stop but, once on the other side, I did pause to watch the bridge open. It took me right back to my Chicago days. I didn’t wait for it to lower again because I wanted to keep going on my ride but a fun thing to see again. I imagine the traffic backups make the bridge openings a little less popular with motorists and I suspect I would have been a bit miffed if I had been a few seconds later! I hope they turn the power off for the wires!
Shortly before the shelter in place restrictions came into effect, we took a stroll along Lake Washington Boulevard in Seattle. It is a popular place for people to walk but also for people out on their bikes and also to drive along. As we wander up the shore, a couple of Minis came the other way. These aren’t modern Minis as built by BMW. These were the originals like the one I learned to drive in. One was a regular mini and the other was configured with a flatbed. I only got a quick shot as they went by. I loved driving the Mini when I was young. It was such a fun car. Of course, if anything went badly wrong, you weren’t exactly well protected so I’m not sure I would be so keen now I am an old git!
No great story with this one. I was at SeaTac for a different arrival on the outer runway. A FedEx MD-11F was making an approach to the inner runway while I was waiting. It provides a good alignment with Mt Rainier in the background so I figured it was a shot worth taking and I was pleased with how it turned out. Given how little I have photographed recently, a shot like this from before everything got locked down suddenly seemed like something to share!
The Airbus A220 is now getting more widely established in service. Indeed, the slightly smaller and highly efficient nature of the jet means that it is likely to be pretty popular as service gets reestablished for a lot of airlines. Sadly, I haven’t seen any other than those with Delta. I have seen a decent number of those, though. As a continuation of my lockdown trawl of the archives, here is a variety of shots of Delta’s A220 flight. If you prefer to call this a C Series from its Bombardier days, feel free but that ship has sailed!
With long haul travel having almost vanished (other than a lot of use of passenger jets for freight movements), some of the regular visitors to Seattle and now a distant memory. Virgin Atlantic was a regular visitor and they had migrated from other types to the 787-9 recently. Here was one heading to SeaTac while I was at Boeing Field. With the reduced size of the airline post COVID (and assuming it survives), will they be coming to Seattle again any time soon? I hope so.
I haven’t shot at BFI for quite a while now. I do look forward to getting back there before too long. Since BFI is closer to downtown, it gets a lot of biz jet traffic. There are some high net worth individuals and big businesses in the area so some of these jets are at the higher end of the range. Here is a selection of the more recent corporate jets I shot prior to the curtailment of my excursions!
These shots aren’t particularly nice but, at the time I took them, I didn’t realize that they would be a bit more significant for a friend of mine. He was a skipper for Virgin Atlantic and making his first run to Seattle. I went out to get his arrival despite it being a bit gloomy. We met up afterwards for a beer and some food. He flew back the following day.
Since that time, the airline business (along with many businesses) has taken a bad turn and Virgin Atlantic has been getting rid of staff. My friend was eligible for retirement and decided to take it. Consequently, this flight turned out to be the last landing he made in his commercial flying career. The return leg landing was made by another member of his crew. It would have been nice if the conditions were better but I am glad I was there to see it. Happy retirement Chris and see you soon I hope!
I have been noticeably unsuccessful when shooting JetSuite X aircraft. When we lived in the Bay Area, they were running flights out of Concord. I did see some aircraft on the ramp but they were not convenient to shoot and I never saw them move. I have seen them a few times at Boeing Field but the conditions have always been less them impressive. Finally, I got to see one landing on a nice day!
Their schedules are easy to track so I knew it was going to be coming in. It wasn’t why I was there but you will take any opportunity! The white with red stripe livery is a slightly odd one but, on a sunny day, it looks pretty nice. I have often pondered what they are re like to use but have not found out to date. I don’t know whether they will survive the current crisis so maybe the opportunity is gone?
Omni provides a lot of charter work in the Seattle area, presumably military work for JBLM. The planes usually operate from SeaTac but then will reposition to Boeing Field. There is often an Omni 767 parked up at the south end of the field but I have not ever seemed to have been there when they are moving. More recently, I happened across one coming in to land after a short trip from SeaTac (I could probably have driven it faster given the routing that they had to take). It was nice to see one up and about so it prompted this post with a few Omni 767s.
The heat haze was a bit of a problem on this day so I was hoping that they would roll out a bit long to get into usable range. They couldn’t have been more obliging. It turned out to be a US Marine Corps KC-130J. They didn’t exit early for the taxiway even though they could have done so with ease but instead rolled all the way to near me before exiting and taxiing back to the ramp in the other direction. This was very kind of them. I got them close enough in to have little in the way of heat haze and to get a decent look at them.