South America May 2008
This first visit to South America was on an Ian Allan 'Propliner Tour', visiting Colombia, Ecuador, Peru and Bolivia. Flying from Miami to Bogota on Monday 19th May by American Airlines A300B4-605R N40064, the following day started with a visit to the FAC Museum at Bogota, before on to La Cita in North Bogota for DC-3C N75T, in use as a classroom at the Colegio de la Salle. Returning to BOG, the ATC tower was then visited for a while to photograph from, before a look around some of the ramps to shoot a few of the old classics here. A day trip to Villavicencio on Wednesday 21st was next, flying from BOG on Aires Dash 8-200 HK-4473X. Spending the full day at this famous propliner haven, with total freedom of the airfield, some of the group took a pleasure flight in Air Colombia C-47A HK-3293, before we returned to BOG on Aires Dash 8-300 HK-4030.
Leaving Colombia on Thursday 22nd for Ecuador, our flight from Bogota to Quito was by AeroGal B737-200 HC-CFR, with the rest of the day spent shooting from the perimeter fence. A visit to the FAE Museum at Quito on Friday 23rd was followed by time spent at a great photospot overlooking the runway and very close taxyway nearby, as some of the group took a pleasure flight in Ecuador AF HS748-2A FAE-742. Access to the FAE ramp and hangars was then followed by a visit to a storage ramp, to conclude a great couple of days here. Leaving for Peru that night, our flight to Lima was on TACA A320 N487TA (which was later sold to TAME as HC-CGW four months later).
On Saturday 24th, the FAP Museum was visited, at Las Palmas AFB to the South of Lima. Unfortunately, the planned ramp tour at Lima was then cancelled, though a few shots were possible from the airport hotel, before later leaving for Bolivia. Flying to Santa Cruz on seven months old TACA A319 N521TA, we arrived in the dark and parked next to a Cubana IL-62! First visit on Sunday 25th, was to Connie N2520B, on display in the city centre in AeroSur colours, before back to the airport for a ramp tour. We were then hosted by the Bolivian Air Force at nearby El Trompillo, with access to their ramp and the FAB Museum. While here, some of the group took a pleasure flight in LET-410 CP-2328, before we later flew on to Cochabamba on AeroSur B727-200 CP-2424. Monday 26th saw some of the group take a return scheduled flight to Trinidad in AeroSur/LAC C-117D CP-2421, with others staying to shoot from the good viewing deck here. On their return, the we then visited the Canedo and LAB facilities, with access to their ramps and hangars. The planned pleasure flight in Canedo C-46 CP-973 was unfortunately not possible, with the aircraft grounded, so the option to fly in AC680C CP-744 was offered. The following morning, another flight on AeroSur/LAC C-117D CP-2421 was taken by some of the group, to Uyuni and back, with others spending more time on the viewing deck. A flight to La Paz then followed, again on AeroSur B727-200 CP-2424. The final full day, on Wednesday 28th was then spent at La Paz, visiting the civil and military ramps, with some of the group taking a pleasure flight in TAM F-27-400M FAB-92. The following morning, our flight to Miami via Santa Cruz, was operated by American Airlines B757-200(WL) N185AN, at the end of a fantastic tour of four South American countries.