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Back in August the Aviation PhotoCrew set for an ‘arctic mission’ to Finland. Not that it was a trip to a cold place. The weather in Finland happened to be even better than in Belgium. 30+ degrees on arrival at Helsinki! There we were picked up by our local guide and photographer, Heimo. He took us to the other side of the airport of Helsinki to take a look at our photoship for the week. A Skyvan used by the University of Aalto for scientific research. We got to meet the crew as well and with that our first day in the north was over.
Before the flying took place we had time for some sightseeing at Helsinki and enjoy some Finnish cuisine. The reindeer was certainly a highlight. In the evening we went to Malmi airport to find a system to put 12 photographers in the Skyvan and make sure they can all take a decent picture from the planes flying behind it. Working with two teams and changing halfway the photoflight happened to be the best option and it worked out very well. The evening ended with a highlight for many of the photographers, the arrival of the Hurricane marked with swastika’s during a stunning sunset.
Thursday saw an early start with a three hour flight from Malmi to Oulu. The same day we did an amazing photoflight with several planes like the Polish Casa, F-16’s, etc. Also the Fouga and the Hurricane came to say hello. The next day we got even more like the Midnight Hawks and F-18 as well as some helicopters like the EC-135 and NH90
Saturday and Sunday were the showdays at Oulu. Unfortunately we had some thunderstorms on Saturday but Sunday saw better weather so after the show we could take off again and fly the plane via Tikkakoski back to Malmi. This time we had the Saab Safir, DC-3 and Hurricane – T6 flying behind us. Our pilot’s daughter and sons joined us to see what their dad had been doing all week.
To end we would like to thank all pilots involved; the entire Skyvan crew for getting the plane ready in time including pilot Erkka Rouhe; the entire ‘Tour de Sky’ team and especially Perttu. And last but not least the other photographers and especially Heimo for helping us wherever he could. The photographs of the Finnish Air Force can be found in the separate report.

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