Malta International Airshow

The Silver Chicken. (Click on the photo for added detail.)

I thought I’d start this week with a few initial photos from the Malta International Airshow, which took place a month ago, mostly on the waters above St Paul’s Bay. For this event I headed up to Xemxija, and the cliffs of Rdum Irxaw, on the opposite side of the bay. I figured the point of view would be as good as I could hope for, and with some luck it would be a lot less crowded. I know those cliffs well enough, having hiked and climbed there before, so I was confident I’d find an out-of-the-way enough place. It turned out well, as my nearest neighbours were at least 10m away, which in these times is still preferred.

Needless to say, I took my longest lens with me, the trusty Sigma 150-600mm, together with its matched 1.4x extender and the APS-C sized sensor EOS M5, for a further 1.6x magnification due to its crop factor. A reach, all told, of 1344mm in full-frame equivalent terms. Of course, this kind of magnification is a pain to handle, especially with fast-moving subjects, but what can you do. At least in an airshow one gets more than enough practice time. I’m starting this collection of photos with the first plane I witnessed – the Italian CAP-21DS “The Silver Chicken”, doing its aerobatic display, above.

I also took some photos of other spectators, in the distance. The first of these, below, shows the battery at the tip of Mistra bay, which was initially where I was planning to go. Judging by the cars there, it’s a good thing I stopped at Xemxija. Mistra is further out, but Xemxija is higher up, and I think in the end that was in fact the better choice.

Mistra Battery. (Click on the photo for added detail.)

The official location of the airshow was the National Aquarium near Qawra Point, Buġibba. I was certain there would be a multitude of people there, which was enough reason to avoid it. I took a photo of the crowd there, below. Even the rocky shoreline below the aquarium was busier than I have ever seen it – I have often been swimming there, usually with barely anyone nearby, even in the height of summer, as it’s rather rough walking territory. The promenade above must have been utter insanity.

Buġibba Aquarium. (Click on the photo for added detail.)

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