For our veteran pilots and those on duty, you would know the high (pun intended) you get when you fly. And with Axalp Fliegerschiessen, one would be extremely inspired and motivated to fly through the alps.
The Axalp Fliegerschiessen is undeniably one of the most aspiring airshows in the world. They round up world-class aircraft manufacturers to showcase the best of the best. The Swiss Air Force will also conduct their target practice skills by firing live ammunition with their board cannons on ground targets. Aside from exhibit of the latest, most innovative aircraft, the air show is also packed with events and activities.
This year’s Axalp Fliegerschiessen will happen from Oct. 18-20. The first day is for training since the location would require attendees to hike at a certain altitude. There are also a lot of safety rules to abide by, but we promise, it is all worth it. Then, on Day 2, the official event starts. Because of the increase in the number of attendees these past few years, the organization decided to close down all the roads to Axalp during the event, and visitors can only go up using a shuttle service.
I. Target Shooting with Board Cannons – Featuring the Boeing F/A-18 Hornet
Points for getting fire out of the gun nozzles. Double points for doing that while catching one of the bullets in your photo.
Do not miss the “sneak pass” and the flare drops at the start and the end of live shooting.
II. Firefighting demo featuring 2 Aerospatiale As532 Cougar
Two Cougars will drop water from Lake Brienz to put out a simulated fire. Camera’s in portrait mode!
III. Helicopter Flying Demo featuring Aerospatiale As532 Cougar
A most classic part of this display is the flare drop with 128 flares. Contrary to what you would normally do with a helo, take a slightly faster shutter speed than normal: the firework of the flares will come out better. Your rotor blur will suffer though! Rest of the display is very photogenic as well, especially when the Cougar is flying around with the gear retracted. All against that beautiful backdrop.
IV. Air Policing Featuring the Pilatus PC-24 & F/A 18
Simulation of an air policing mission, Photographically speaking less interesting as most of it takes place from a far distance. Nice formation shots of two F/A-18 Hornets and PC-24 are possible though.
V. Special Forces Operations (our favorite!) featuring the PC-7
In 2021 we saw a new program item where a group of six special forces are dropped to secure an area. When they start shooting, be sure to catch the mortar firing and the pick up of the soldiers at the end! Very spectacular!
VI. Paratroopers featuring the PC-7
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Try to nail the moment that the paras jump out of the plane. The para carrying the big Swiss flag is also photogenic. Further it is wise to keep your eyes open after the drop has taken place. This year as a novelty, the PC-7’s flew straight at the audience from the mountain ridge in the south.
VII. Swiss Hornet Display Team featuring the Boeing F/A-18 Hornet
The best place in the world to watch the F/A-18 do a display. The program has evolved over the years to suit the Axalp arena even better.
VIII. PC-21 Demo featuring the Pilatus PC-21
Don’t underestimate this little red turboprop trainer against the mountain backdrop. One of the highlights always. Especially if it comes flying straight at the KP tower at Ebenflüh or the Tschingel hill.
IX. Patrouille Suisse featuring the Northrop F-5E Tiger
Traditionally the closing of the show. The flying is adapted to the terrain, making this display one of a kind. Best at the start of the show when they fly with all six ships.
Watch the amazing videos of the past Axalp events.
To get information on tickets and reservations, check out the link here.
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