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Airbus Beluga #1

Airbus Beluga freighter aircraft flying at dusk

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The story behind this image

A common site in the skies over northeast Wales, this is the huge Beluga transport aircraft, used for ferrying wings from the Airbus factory at Broughton down to Bristol and then on to Toulouse, France where the final Airbus aircraft assembly takes place.

I've watched this improbable aircraft fly overhead many times, but never, until this image, have I been in a position to photograph it.

On this occasion in early December 2019 I was walking out to my car after work with dusk falling when I spotted the Beluga on the horizon, coming my way.

I had just enough time to dig my camera out of the boot of my car, fix on my longest lens and adjust the setting to give me a fast enough shutter speed to capture the scene with a handheld shot without too much camera wobble befor the plane arrived overhead.

Just two or three exposures later and the Beluga disappeared over the roof of my factory.

This is the best of the frames I took in that frantic minute, and maybe I'll be able to get some more pictures of this amazing aircraft next time.

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Image data

Filename - airbus beluga 01

Camera - Canon EOS 6D

Lens - 100-400mm zoom @ 400mm

Exposure - 1/320 sec @ f6.3, ISO12800

Filters - None.

Location - Deeside, North Wales

Image enhancements - Adobe Lightroom

Comments - High ISO used to allow handheld exposure with image stabilisation.