London-Luton Airport – 12/10/2015

London-Luton Airport – 12/10/2015

Having experienced some issues with my beloved Sigma 120-300mm f2.8 at Stansted, which I seemed to have rectified over the weekend, I was keen to get out and give the lens a proper run out ahead of a hectic winter schedule that should see me back in the Middle East.  London-Luton Airport was the venue that won out on account of having the best weather prospects. 

I arrived just before 1000 and was quite surprised to discover I’d been beaten to the airport by the La Compagnie 757, which had arrived from Newark almost an hour ahead of schedule!  As it happened, the sun was still to put in an appearance at that stage, so I was not as disappointed as I might otherwise have been.

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The wind was from the north east and was biting.  Runway 08 was the active, and I decided I’d head to a location I’d not used for many years, quite a way along the fence from the southside crash gate and opposite the taxiway leading from Signature, Harrods Aviation and the Cul-de-Sac.  No sooner had I arrived, the sun poked through.

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For mid-October it felt busy.  There seemed to be a lot of airliner movements, with Wizzair appearing to have ramped up their operation some more.

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On the flip side, it was much quieter in terms of bizjets than my last few visits have been.  Despite that, there were still a few lovely looking aircraft to be seen, most notably Global Jet’s gorgeous Dassault Falcon 7X LX-AMB.

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I also shot my first South African registered biz, and Bombardier BD700 Global Express 9M-CJG, which I’m assuming belongs personally to Tony Fernandes rather than AirAsia as most sources claim (the nose carries logos of several of Tony’s businesses).

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Perhaps the most surprising movement of the day, though, came with the arrival of Meridiana Boeing 767-300 I-AIGG, apparently arriving from Sochi, Russia.  It later departed to Milan-Malpensa, presumably empty, judging by the way it leapt into the air!

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I had hoped that there might be some sunset shots to be had, given that the sun was due to set almost straight down the runway, but a big bank of cloud rolled in just as things were starting to get interesting and just one thin sliver of a gap appeared thereafter.

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As it transpired, the lens still wasn’t right, so I took it down to the good people at Sigma the following day for repair, and it was returned to me yesterday having had the MR sensor replaced.

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