Ellington Field 1-10-201

Article and pictures by Bill Havel.

I made the trip down to Ellington after work for my first spotting of 2014.  As I got closer, it started to drizzle as I noticed the sky was quite dark with a low ceiling.  At first, I went to the south end of where most of the transient aircraft park on the ramp and was greeted by a WC-130 which is assigned to the 53 WRS (Weather Reconnaissance Squadron), Keesler AFB, MS.  This particular unit is known as the Hurricane Hunters.  After taking a few pics I drove over to the north side and saw a E-2.  Unfortunately, I could not get any static pics as it was parked behind several fuel trucks.  Darn, I hate when that happens, LOL.  As I began to take a closer look I soon realized it was the same E-2D from VX-1 I had seen last month stop by for some fuel.  I knew it would  be departing shortly as the air start cart was hooked up to it and running.  Within a couple of minutes I saw something in the corner of my eye which turned out to be a KC-135 landing on 17R.  She made her way to the end of the runway before taxing back up to the north side where the guard unit is.  About the time she made it up there the E-2D started to taxi out to depart on 17R and was soon airborne.  Just like the last time I saw her she retracted the gear at low level and hugged the deck.  I thought to my self….SWEET!!!  Soon after she passed where I was standing she made a nice left turn to to the southwest to climb out.  A few minutes later a guy I was talking to pointed and said “look”.  About the time I did I saw the KC-135 just starting to lift off.  I wasn’t on my ladder so I shot what I could through the chain link fence.  Hey, I’ll take what I can get.  About the time I saw it disappear into the the low level dark clouds…….storms rolling through….I saw the WC-130 crew come out making their way to their aircraft.  I would have liked to have caught them departing but I was getting way too dark.  Perhaps next time……

This particular spot was a first for me in that the last military aircraft I shot in the air in 2013 is the first one I shot in the air in 2014.  I’m secretly hoping this is a good omen of sorts.


EF 1-10-2014