Gila River Memorial, Chandler, AZ, USA (34AZ) - 25 February 2007

I had a frustrating night of finding all the hotels in the area closest to Chandler Memorial Airport being fully booked due to a motor race, I finally found one that allowed me to use an out of service room - apparently the door was hard to lock, but I didn't have any issues.

I decided on a really early start, so early that by the time I was on the airfield it wasn't light enough to shoot, and it was still really cold. I sat in the car for a little while waiting for the sun to rise and shot the DC-4's before the sun come up over the horizon - the so called golden light. This doesn't really work on white aircraft and the sky looked kind of flat, so I waited for the sun to rise over the horizon and shot the whole lot again. This time they came out more orange, but I kind of like it.

I had already gained permission from International Air Response (formally T&G Aviation) to wander their ex-airfield. They moved from here to Coolidge after some issue with the Indian land owners, and just leaving their un-flyable aircraft behind for now. Coolidge would be my next stop.

The ex Biegert Aviation DC-4s (C-54s)are parked at the far side of the airfield and look like they are awaiting their scrapman fate, one already having had its tail and rear fuselage cut off. (N44904, N44906, N44908 and N44910)

There was also a DC-4 (C-54) nose section and cockpit lying on its side. (N44915)

Next up were the PV-2 Harpoons and a lonely Howard 500 scattered around the fuel pumps and hard stand. One of the PV-2's had been pained with a bold "not scrap", as had a couple of other pieces around the field - I hope that this doesn't mean that everything else is due to be scrapped! (PV-2s - N7086C, N7251C, N7257C / Howard 500 N130P)

At the edge of the field over 50 H-19 Chickasaw's were locked inside a compound - these are apparently stored for Vertol Aviation Technologies.

Elsewhere there was the front half of a DC-7 on a trailer (N5902) and another DC-7 out to grass but complete bar a little vandalism (N4889C) - certainly less DC-7's than used to be here!

There were also a couple of C-130's in another compound. (N131FF and N138FF)

Also present was the rear half of a PB4Y-2 (N6816D) on a trailer that had been involved in an accident.

While I was scouting around a microlight was flying around the field and I stopped and talked to the guy on the way out - we were the only two people on the field, and I found out that he was only from Fulham in London - about 7 miles from where I grew up!

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