A few weeks ago during one of my many trips out of Midway, we were taxiing to the departure runway when we passed one of the FBOs on the field. Parked up ready to board was a Lockheed Jetstar. Not endangered perhaps but certainly a rarity. A mental note of the registration and I checked up on it when I got back on the ground.
Turns out this aircraft makes a regular appearance at Midway. Now to find a chance when we can both be in the same place. It doesn’t fly a huge amount so finding the chance would be the tricky thing. Not only must it be flying in to Midway, it must do it when I am in town, not tied up with other work and preferably when the weather is good.
An email alert told me that she was coming in today so all things were aligned. I headed down to Midway and looked to find a spot to shoot from. Midway allows you to get very close to the approaching aircraft but it is well developed and has an abundance of power lines so getting a clear shot is not that easy.
I arrived just in time to miss a very attractive Global Express that was landing. Had I not originally gone to a bad spot, that would probably have been added to my shot list but never mind. It did seem to be a busy time for corporate aircraft though. In about 10 minutes, a Hawker 800 and a Cessna Soverign arrived, bracketing the arrival of my target. Not too bad when you think about it. Considering Midway is usually wall to wall Southwest 737s, this should be counted as a bit of a result.
The Hawker gave me an opportunity to check whether my lens choice was right. The 70-200 was okay but perhaps a little short so, keeping an eye out for the imminent arrival, I swapped to the 100-400. No drama this time and I was ready when the Jetstar came across the roof tops.
She is an interesting looking aircraft. Certainly dated in her appearance, big fuel tanks on the wings and four engines mounted at the rear. Not, perhaps, as graveful as some more modern aircraft but more interesting for being such a classic.
It is a brief moment as an aircraft passes by on approach so a rapid series of shots and then she was gone. Originally, she had a flight plan filed for a departure half an hour later so I was ready to run to the other end to catch her again but this was cancelled. Even so, a worthwhile expedition to catch a great looking aircraft.