Watching F-22s at Hickam Air Force Base

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sachiel

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Unread post31 Jan 2013, 01:09

Hey guys. I'm a long time reader here at F-16.net and just started a fresh account here a few hours ago. I'll be visiting Honolulu, Hawaii later in April. While there I of course plan to visit the Arizona Memorial along with the USS Missouri nearby at Pearl Harbour. I've always envied the F-22 Raptor as it is one cool looking flying machine. As a aviation/military aircraft enthusiast, I'm looking for potentially good spots for watching these planes take off or fly in the area.

I would be very grateful if any members here at F-16.net have any recommendations on good spots around Honolulu or Hickam where I can watch these babies sit on the tarmac, take-off or fly.

Cheers.
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awsome

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Unread post31 Jan 2013, 23:55

The best spot to see the F-22s is from the parking lot at the end of lagoon drive that comes south of Nimitz highway. There is no parking anywhere along that road because it runs under the approach path for several runways but there is a parking lot at the end that is accessible to the public. This puts you about two thirds of the way down the southern most runways. The jets are wheels up by the time they are level with you but also right at fence top level. The viewing there is great but the chain link fences make photography more challenging. Flight times are totally random but your best bet is between 8 and 11 am. An alternate spot is the boat launch at sand island but it is much farther away. Google earth it. Good luck and I would love to see any pictures you get. :D
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sachiel

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Unread post01 Feb 2013, 02:37

Thanks for the reply Awesome. I managed to find the parking lot you were talking about. Do you think taxis would be able to drop you off there?

Image

I'm not sure how I'd get back though as the road seems rather deserted. I suppose it would be best to rent a vehicle or something to get there. As for the spot to stakeout the Raptors seems rather far away from their hangar area. I suppose these runways closest to the parking lot south of Honolulu International are shared by both commercial airlines and military jets?
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awsome

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Unread post01 Feb 2013, 03:19

Yes your right, you can't see the hanger area from that parking lot and I would forget about trying to spot them on the ground. My understanding of spotting etiquette is that it is not ok to look or photograph into an af base. The runways the Raptors use at Honolulu are part of the public airport so watching them take off is ok. From what I have seen both civilian and military aircraft use the runway south of that parking lot. It would be way easier for you if you did have a rental car and I found that even standing on the open door sill of my rental car allowed me to photograph over the fences. Feel free to PM me if you have more questions and have a great time in Hawaii!
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awsome

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Unread post01 Feb 2013, 03:47

View from parking lot
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sachiel

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Unread post01 Feb 2013, 11:02

Those pics you took look great Awesome. I have a few more questions I'd like to ask about the parking lot location and the type of camera equipment used to take those photos. Expect a PM from me shortly. Thanks again.
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Unread post01 Feb 2013, 12:39

The parking lot in question is not anywhere near the Air Force Base, nor can photo's of the Air Force property be easily taken from there. The only problem I see is that the parking area in question is NOT on public property, but rather airport property. The airport police could prevent you from photography.
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awsome

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Unread post01 Feb 2013, 12:53

I was there during RIMPAC last year and the parking lot was patrolled frequently by airport security. There were usually three or four other spotters there and everybody seemed to stay close to their parked cars and were very respectfull of the fences. Security never talked to us and I had the feeling we were ok as long as we behaved. That being said if you were asked to leave you can always spot from the boat launch at Sand island. It is much farther away but you can easily see them.
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awsome

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Unread post02 Feb 2013, 01:27

The view from Sand Island
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dutchphantom

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Unread post02 Feb 2013, 09:42

The best spot to see F-22's is at the parking lot at the end of Lagoon drive. If you only want to watch this is no problem. However if you want to take photos it is better to get a hobby photographer’s permit from the airport manager. Without this permit the police or airport security can send you away if they see you taking photos.
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sachiel

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Unread post02 Feb 2013, 12:57

I see. Thanks for the tip. Would you happen to know how much a hobby photographer's permit is? I would assume it doesn't come cheap?
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dutchphantom

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Unread post03 Feb 2013, 03:31

As far as I know they are free.
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checksixx

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Unread post04 Feb 2013, 05:42

Available info online: "If you plan an extended stay in Honolulu, you may want to contact the airport manager’s office to apply for a hobby photographers permit. It’s free, and it will allow you to take photos around HNL, as long it is for personal use and non-commercial purposes."
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sachiel

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Unread post30 Mar 2013, 04:01

Okay.....I just contacted Honolulu International Airport about obtaining a Hobby Photographer's Permit. It turns out that there might indeed be a fee associated with the permit. Apparently I might have to pay $100 a day to photograph subject matter on airport property. Is this a recent change or did I miss something? I thought the permit was free?
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checksixx

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Unread post30 Mar 2013, 04:28

Guess they've removed that from the website...oh well.
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