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Thread: First spotting trip to LHR...appreciate some guidance

  1. #1
    Junior Member
    Join Date
    Aug 2007
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    2

    First spotting trip to LHR...appreciate some guidance

    Hello everyone,
    I am heading to London this weekend, and am looking to spend a much of Friday and Saturday spotting at LHR. I am hoping someone in this forum may have experience spotting at LHR and be able to provide some guidance.
    Based on my research, on both Friday and Saturday morning Ė mid-afternoon 27R will be used for landings and 27L for departures, and from mid-afternoon to end of day 27R for departures and 27L for landings. My current plan is to spend Friday spotting departures, and Saturday spotting arrivals. Iím all set with Saturday as several spotting guides detail the areas west side of the airport around Hatton Cross station and Myrtle Ave as some of the premier locations in the world for spotting.
    My question is focused on Friday. Iím hoping this group might be able to provide some guidance on the best locations to photograph 27R/L departures. Iíve read that the landside departure level of Terminal 5 is a good location, but is a parking garage or simply walking outside the terminal, crossing the street and spotting from the sidewalk preferred? Does anyone know if spotting at Terminal 5 has been restricted given heightened warnings for travel in the past weeks? Has anyone had any experience with the Esso station on the South Perimeter Rd to catch 27L departures? Is it walkable from Terminal 4 or 5? Also, the same for the questions for 27R departures. Has anyone had any experience with spotting at the Thistle Hotel? Is it walkable from Terminal 5?
    Iíve heard it can be difficult to park at some of these locationsÖso I was going to walk where possible, but hoping this group can help me decide if itís necessary/suggested to rent a car (which I have no issue doing).
    Anyone have any experience or guidance they can share? Appreciate and time/insight you can provide.

  2. #2
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Apr 2005
    Posts
    152
    Hi, I have done some spotting at LHR before. The runway use is first dependent on the wind direction. They might use RWY 9 for take off and landing (complete opposite to 27 all day). If that's the case, then it's very hard to get good take off shots for 9. You have to drive or take the bus to some location off RWY 9 to get the landing shots.

    Your plan works if 27 is used for take off and landing. I understand you can get good take off shots from outside T5, but can't say anything about current security measures.

    If 27 is used for landing, one week they will use 27R from dawn to 3pm, while use 27L for take off. At 3pm, they switch to 27L for landing and 27R for takeoff. The next week, the opposite is true.

    Finally, there is a website that show real time webcam view of the 27s of LHR. It's www.heathrowcam.net. Looks like today they have used 27R for landing in the morning and 27L in the afternoon. So there is a very good chance your plan will work.

    Enjoy and show your photos here when you return.

  3. #3
    Moderator mirrodie's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2005
    Location
    Me like the Robert Downey Jr of cooooooookies!
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    5,746
    Find the Greenman Pub, a 2 minute walk from Hatton Cross.

    Enjoy a few beers while taking photos of the jets coming in. You can't beat it.
    And I, I took the path less traveled by
    and that has made all the difference......yet...
    I have a feeling a handle of people are going to be very interested in what I post in the near future.

    http://www.jetphotos.net/showphotos.php?userid=187

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