8 Things You Must Know Before Visiting The Mach Loop
YouTube / Gary Gough
The Mach Loop, a series of valleys in the United Kingdom, is known as the premiere spot for photographing military aircraft as it serves as their low-level training area. If you’re ever considering visiting this lovely area, then here are 8 things you should know:
1. Even on a busy day, 99.9% of your day will be spent waiting for planes to come around
Think of a fisherman sitting for hours on end before catching a single fish. It can really, really be boring!
No matter what anybody tells you, there’s never a guarantee. Even the most experienced of loopers would turn out, and the day would be drawn blank. That’s a long time just sitting on top of a windy mountain staring at the clouds!
2. Parking can be a real nightmare
If you decide to turn up at 10 or 11 in the morning and find a parking space, then chances are, it’s not going to happen unless you’re very, very lucky. So if you come from different parts of the country and you know each other, then definitely car share.
Experienced loopers know that they have to be there early to secure a parking space!
3. You have to hike to go to amazing vantage points
You’ll be walking up a mountain. So this isn’t recommended if you’re very unfit or you’re medically unsound. Alternatively, you can stay in the CAD West Scout Park to get a fairly decent view of low aircraft, but at that point, they’ll be flying over your head.
4. Mosquitoes and ticks – PLUS the elements!
Up the mountain, there’s no shelter from various elements of nature such as the wind, rain, sun, or cold. Temperatures and weather conditions can easily change so always be prepared! Make sure to wear appropriate clothing, and bring suntan lotion, food, snacks, and plenty of fluid.
5. Very limited phone signal
There’s a limited phone signal up at the Mach loop. Most people struggle with getting a signal, so consider this as well.
6. There’s no such thing as a timetable for the Mach loop
Although there’s a timetable that you can download from a government website that contains the times of jets flying, it has nothing to do with the aircraft flying around the Mach loop.
Professional landscape photographer Gary Gough suggests that you be there from 9 am to 5 pm, Monday to Friday as generally, that’s the schedule aircraft usually flies there. He says to avoid going on UK and American bank holidays.
7. When an aircraft finally flies through the Mach loop, there’s no better feeling
It’s definitely an incredible place to be to witness that!
8. Photographing aircraft is really easy
It’s really easy to photograph or film aircraft. A lot of people go there and just film the aircraft flying through the loop on their phones. That’s literally point-and-click!