Download the report (Dutch) and serials as published in Scramble magazine.
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Every aircraft enthusiast has a wish list of (exotic) locations to visit. China will be high on everyone’s list. With communism fading and China opening up to the west, this isn’t a dangerous trip anymore. Off course caution must be taken when spotting at military objects. Civil spotting is no problem anymore, the Chinese are even picking up the hobby themselves.
On march 18th 2005, 26 spotters left with the PH-VFO, a KLM Boeing 747, bound for Beijing. After a 9 hour flight, which took us over Russia, Siberia and Mongolia we landed at 9.00 in the morning (19th) at the Beijing Capital Airport. After going through customs we met with our guide Leo. A guide is no luxury because most don’t speaks a word English, and English road signs outsight Beijing can’t be found.
19 March – Beijing Capital Airport
The day just started so we directly went to a spot (spot 1) on the west side of runway 18R/36L and stayed here for the rest of the day. This is an excellent spot to photograph and spot the cargo apron. We were also confronted with a common problem in Beijing this time of the year, sandstorms. There was a sandy haze over the airport, but this was compensated with some exciting visitors like the ANA Pokemon 747 and a North Korean Air Koryo Il-62.
Lot’s of local carriers were seen like: Air China, China Eastern, China Northern, China Southern, Hainan Airlines, Xiamen Airlines, Sichuan Airlines and Shenzhen Airlines. Check the download of this article for the serials.
20 March – Military and Aviation Museum of Beijing
After a restless night and a good Chinese breakfast it’s time for our first cultural visit. Off course when visiting Beijing the Tiananmen square (right in the center of the city) can’t be missed. Although early in the morning, hundreds of Chinese where lining up to visit the mausoleum of the 1st chairman of the communist party (CPC) Mao Zedong. After visiting Tiananmen we drove to the Beijing Military Museum. The museum is located south of the Yuyauntan Park, Fuxing Lu street (Haidian district) and gives an overview of the Chinese military history. Off course we concentrated on the flying material.
Highlight in this museum is the in 1965 shot down U-2 (56-6691). After being hit by a SA-2 missile the U-2 crashed near Beijing with the RoCAF (Taiwan) pilot surviving. He was not released until 1983! Besides the U-2 a Shenyang J-8 is on display, a Chinese developed Mig-21 with two engines. There are also some defected Taiwanese aircraft on display.