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Tampa Spotting  
User currently offlineNASCARAirforce From United States of America, joined Feb 2005, 3184 posts, RR: 4
Posted (7 years 2 months 3 weeks 6 days 11 hours ago) and read 5804 times:

I was doing some searches for Tampa aircraft spotting on here, but I am not familiar with where some of these locations are such as "the beach", "fishing hole" etc.

What are some of the best places for spotting where no one will give you any problems for having a camera at TPA?

I am aware of the bowling alley, and have gotten pictures there. However I am planning on going Thursday and it looks like they will be using the 36s that day due to north winds. Where is a good mid to late afternoon area for spotting, or even late morning 11am -5pm?

25 replies: All unread, showing first 25:
 
User currently offlineSluger020889 From United States of America, joined Mar 2005, 456 posts, RR: 1
Reply 1, posted (7 years 2 months 3 weeks 6 days 7 hours ago) and read 5782 times:

"The beach" is your best option here from about 3pm onward. Its probably the best spot in Tampa as far as security goes. Its at the very end of West Cypress street (if you don't know where it is go to google maps, find TPA and its just south of the airport, you can get directions there) on the left is an entrance to a business park, turn in there and you well come to the entrance of Cypress Point Park. Go in there and park. You can then walk around the park and find you a good spot to watch the action. I personally walk down to the beach and go as far north (towards the airport) as possible, if the tide is in it won't look there is much but there is, you just half to walk through the mangroves, don't worry theres a little path, you'll see it. Have fun.

joey



I would love to fly a cargo plane full of rubber dog shit out of Hong Kong!
User currently offlineNASCARAirforce From United States of America, joined Feb 2005, 3184 posts, RR: 4
Reply 2, posted (7 years 2 months 3 weeks 5 days 17 hours ago) and read 5756 times:

Quoting Sluger020889 (Reply 1):
The beach" is your best option here from about 3pm onward. Its probably the best spot in Tampa as far as security goes. Its at the very end of West Cypress street (if you don't know where it is go to google maps, find TPA and its just south of the airport, you can get directions there) on the left is an entrance to a business park, turn in there and you well come to the entrance of Cypress Point Park. Go in there and park. You can then walk around the park and find you a good spot to watch the action. I personally walk down to the beach and go as far north (towards the airport) as possible, if the tide is in it won't look there is much but there is, you just half to walk through the mangroves, don't worry theres a little path, you'll see it. Have fun.

And its a safe place to go to without anyone bothering you? You can also park your car and not worry about it getting towed? Any suggestions on where to park?


User currently offline727LOVER From United States of America, joined Oct 2001, 6609 posts, RR: 20
Reply 3, posted (7 years 2 months 3 weeks 5 days 16 hours ago) and read 5750 times:

Its a public park. People are out there walking their dogs or playing frisbee, or they stroll down to the beach.

Late mornings, you can shoot from Raytheon or over by the icehouse/ex DL hanger, but call the airport police or PR office and ask for Maria Cook. Unfortunately, I have misplaced all my contact numbers. Oh and for afternoon, there's also the economy lot. You're from MCO, remember this analogy.

MCO = North Korea

TPA = South Korea


OK, an exaggeration, but you get the drift.



Listen Betty, don't start up with your 'White Zone' s*** again.
User currently offlineSluger020889 From United States of America, joined Mar 2005, 456 posts, RR: 1
Reply 4, posted (7 years 2 months 3 weeks 5 days 11 hours ago) and read 5731 times:

Quoting 727LOVER (Reply 3):
MCO = North Korea

TPA = South Korea


OK, an exaggeration, but you get the drift.

No that's pretty much dead on.

Quoting 727LOVER (Reply 3):

Late mornings, you can shoot from Raytheon or over by the icehouse/ex DL hanger, but call the airport police or PR office and ask for Maria Cook. Unfortunately, I have misplaced all my contact numbers.

I gotcha.

TPA Info
813-870-8700

Call that number and ask for the lady mentioned above.

TPA Police (would hurt to give them a buzz as well)
813-870-8760

Ozell, who's Maria Cook?



I would love to fly a cargo plane full of rubber dog shit out of Hong Kong!
User currently offline727LOVER From United States of America, joined Oct 2001, 6609 posts, RR: 20
Reply 5, posted (7 years 2 months 3 weeks 5 days 10 hours ago) and read 5728 times:

Maria is my contact in the Public Relations office. I always call her for big weekend spotting. She sends an e-mail to the police. I only call the police if it's spur of the moment.

Quoting Sluger020889 (Reply 4):
TPA Info
813-870-8700

That # sounds right. I also have a # from an officer (the police #) when a bunch of us were tagged up in the North Cargo Lot. I also have another officer's e-mail, if I can find it.



Listen Betty, don't start up with your 'White Zone' s*** again.
User currently offlineNASCARAirforce From United States of America, joined Feb 2005, 3184 posts, RR: 4
Reply 6, posted (7 years 2 months 3 weeks 5 days 4 hours ago) and read 5717 times:

How about the top floor of the parking garage? I have heard a lot of people saying how they don't get bothered at the garage.

I actually work for GOAA now, so I probably wouldn't have a hard time spotting on GOAA property now since the operations staff knows me at least on Landside.

I will have my GOAA badge with me at TPA, so seeing that I work for an airport maybe will benefit me.

Thanks for the contact info though.


User currently offline727LOVER From United States of America, joined Oct 2001, 6609 posts, RR: 20
Reply 7, posted (7 years 2 months 3 weeks 4 days 15 hours ago) and read 5706 times:

Quoting NASCARAirforce (Reply 6):
I actually work for GOAA now

hmmmmmmmm.......I could use you on my next trip to MCO/SFB  wink 



Listen Betty, don't start up with your 'White Zone' s*** again.
User currently offlineSluger020889 From United States of America, joined Mar 2005, 456 posts, RR: 1
Reply 8, posted (7 years 2 months 3 weeks 4 days 13 hours ago) and read 5698 times:

Quoting NASCARAirforce (Reply 6):
How about the top floor of the parking garage? I have heard a lot of people saying how they don't get bothered at the garage.

Good in the mornings (18R/36L Opps) from sun up untill noon and then its good again on the other side (18L/36R) from about 3 untill dusk.

The garage is hit and miss with security. The only time I've been stopped up there was on 4th of July, but that was expected.



I would love to fly a cargo plane full of rubber dog shit out of Hong Kong!
User currently offlineNASCARAirforce From United States of America, joined Feb 2005, 3184 posts, RR: 4
Reply 9, posted (7 years 2 months 3 weeks 4 days 10 hours ago) and read 5686 times:

Quoting 727LOVER (Reply 7):
hmmmmmmmm.......I could use you on my next trip to MCO/SFB

Can't help you with SFB. When I last spotted at SFB I took pictures on 17/92 in a shopping center parking lot. I think if they were to ever use the north/south runway you might be ok at the little park next to the runway with the Navy Jet at it.

I haven't tried taking any photos at MCO since I started working there - still do my photography off property on my days off. I am going to ask around where I can take pictures.

Quoting Sluger020889 (Reply 8):
The garage is hit and miss with security. The only time I've been stopped up there was on 4th of July, but that was expected.

Stopped or just questioned? I am heading there tomorrow afternoon. It is slow season at Florida airports right now so I assume there shouldn't be any problems.


User currently offlineSluger020889 From United States of America, joined Mar 2005, 456 posts, RR: 1
Reply 10, posted (7 years 2 months 3 weeks 4 days 7 hours ago) and read 5681 times:

The officer just made me call and get permission, though she seemed a little disappointed when I got it. Chances are though, no one will say anything to you.


I would love to fly a cargo plane full of rubber dog shit out of Hong Kong!
User currently offlineNASCARAirforce From United States of America, joined Feb 2005, 3184 posts, RR: 4
Reply 11, posted (7 years 2 months 3 weeks 4 days ago) and read 5667 times:

Quoting Sluger020889 (Reply 10):
The officer just made me call and get permission, though she seemed a little disappointed when I got it. Chances are though, no one will say anything to you.

I'll find out tomorrow.

I assume they would use the 36s tomorrow, so for afternoon I will probably be at the "beach"

I know that the bowling alley is a good place in morning if they are using the 18s - as that is the only place I have spotted at though briefly. What is there in the afternoon if they are using the 18s to spot at?


User currently offlineDazed767 From United States of America, joined May 1999, 5498 posts, RR: 51
Reply 12, posted (7 years 2 months 3 weeks 3 days 14 hours ago) and read 5657 times:

Quoting NASCARAirforce (Reply 6):
GOAA

What shift do you normally work?
Email me through my profile sometime.

Justin


User currently offlineSluger020889 From United States of America, joined Mar 2005, 456 posts, RR: 1
Reply 13, posted (7 years 2 months 3 weeks 3 days 3 hours ago) and read 5641 times:

Quoting NASCARAirforce (Reply 11):
What is there in the afternoon if they are using the 18s to spot at?

North West Commerce Park which is also off Hillsborough Ave, when you leave the bowling alley just go west and you'll see the sign on the right. This spot can be risky on weekday afternoons as the traffic backs up and all the people in traffic have plenty of time to sit there and look at you, and call the cops.



I would love to fly a cargo plane full of rubber dog shit out of Hong Kong!
User currently offlineNASCARAirforce From United States of America, joined Feb 2005, 3184 posts, RR: 4
Reply 14, posted (7 years 2 months 3 weeks 3 days 2 hours ago) and read 5636 times:

Quoting Dazed767 (Reply 12):
What shift do you normally work?
Email me through my profile sometime.

I work late afternoons - 5pm - 1am

Quoting Sluger020889 (Reply 13):
North West Commerce Park which is also off Hillsborough Ave, when you leave the bowling alley just go west and you'll see the sign on the right. This spot can be risky on weekday afternoons as the traffic backs up and all the people in traffic have plenty of time to sit there and look at you, and call the cops.

I went to TPA today. Went to Short Term garage roof for about an hour - no problems there. Although when I was on the southeast corner of the short term garage, I saw a cop on a bike on the top floor of the Long term garage. I grabbed one more departure then left - unfortunately missed free parking by 5 minutes as I was there an hour and five minutes.

I then went to Cypress Point Park - that was great. I was there from about 2pm till sundown with a run to Subway around 5pm. No one looked at me weird and in fact some people asked me about planes and what kind or airline they were etc that were at the park. Most of the time I sat in the shade at a bench under a tree or in one of the covered picnic areas until the planes got close since it was so hot today. The only issue I had there was the sunburn.


User currently offlineSluger020889 From United States of America, joined Mar 2005, 456 posts, RR: 1
Reply 15, posted (7 years 2 months 3 weeks 2 days 15 hours ago) and read 5629 times:

Quoting NASCARAirforce (Reply 14):
The only issue I had there was the sunburn.

Glad to hear that was your only problem. The cop on the bike would've been cool. I ran into once, and he was pretty fascinated by my camera and what not and let me keep on going, it's the one's with the patrol cars you got to worry about.

Joey



I would love to fly a cargo plane full of rubber dog shit out of Hong Kong!
User currently offlineNASCARAirforce From United States of America, joined Feb 2005, 3184 posts, RR: 4
Reply 16, posted (7 years 2 months 3 weeks 2 days 9 hours ago) and read 5620 times:

Quoting Sluger020889 (Reply 15):
Glad to hear that was your only problem. The cop on the bike would've been cool. I ran into once, and he was pretty fascinated by my camera and what not and let me keep on going, it's the one's with the patrol cars you got to worry about.

Joey

Oh really?

I didn't stay up there too long though since I was going to start getting charged for parking up there and it was 1pm when I left and most of the action was taking place on 36L so I would be looking into the sun.

The other problem is my telephoto is acting up lately (I am going to start a new thread for this) so I can't zoom all the way in to my 300mm without the camera acting funny.

I really enjoyed the park and I was there from 1:30 to 5:00 when it clouded up. I ran to get a Subway and came back stayed and got photos of sun setting. Too bad that Cypress Point Park Deli is closed. I am going to go to Cypress Point Park sometime to get morning shots too as I found that the park extends pretty far east too and there are benches and shade trees.


User currently offlineSluger020889 From United States of America, joined Mar 2005, 456 posts, RR: 1
Reply 17, posted (7 years 2 months 3 weeks 2 days 4 hours ago) and read 5609 times:

Quoting NASCARAirforce (Reply 16):
I didn't stay up there too long though since I was going to start getting charged for parking up there and it was 1pm when I left and most of the action was taking place on 36L so I would be looking into the sun.

We used to drive around and get a new ticket every 55 minutes or so, we'd go 3 or 4 hours without paying lol.

Glad you enjoyed your time.



I would love to fly a cargo plane full of rubber dog shit out of Hong Kong!
User currently offlineNASCARAirforce From United States of America, joined Feb 2005, 3184 posts, RR: 4
Reply 18, posted (7 years 2 months 3 weeks 1 day 13 hours ago) and read 5597 times:

Quoting Sluger020889 (Reply 17):
We used to drive around and get a new ticket every 55 minutes or so, we'd go 3 or 4 hours without paying lol.

Glad you enjoyed your time.

With the strange problem I am having with my camera where full zoom doesn't work, the garage wasn't working for me. Plus it was 90+ degrees Friday with no shade, no bathrooms and no where to get a drink other than some of the bottled water I brought plus the terrible heat haze I was getting in my pictures for aircraft on the ground. I might try again once I get my telephoto issues resolved and we get lower temperatures because I would love some evening shots with Raymond James Stadium and Downtown skyline in the background.

Again I really love the park. I wish they had a park like that at MCO


User currently offlineSluger020889 From United States of America, joined Mar 2005, 456 posts, RR: 1
Reply 19, posted (7 years 2 months 3 weeks 1 day 8 hours ago) and read 5590 times:

Quoting NASCARAirforce (Reply 18):
With the strange problem I am having with my camera where full zoom doesn't work, the garage wasn't working for me. Plus it was 90+ degrees Friday with no shade, no bathrooms and no where to get a drink other than some of the bottled water I brought plus the terrible heat haze I was getting in my pictures for aircraft on the ground. I might try again once I get my telephoto issues resolved and we get lower temperatures because I would love some evening shots with Raymond James Stadium and Downtown skyline in the background.

Yeah normally that place is rough in the summer, so hot that we some times just go down to the 8th floor to seek some shade. But just remember, next time just take the elevator down to the gates and shops level and you can find bathrooms and some places to eat.



I would love to fly a cargo plane full of rubber dog shit out of Hong Kong!
User currently offlineDazed767 From United States of America, joined May 1999, 5498 posts, RR: 51
Reply 20, posted (7 years 2 months 3 weeks 1 day 7 hours ago) and read 5584 times:

Quoting NASCARAirforce (Reply 14):
5pm - 1am

Ah, I'm usually around 10p-6a. Did you manage to see that L1011 a few weeks back (I made a post, but the lovely admins moved it to the military forum....where nobody would look  boggled  )

View Large View Medium
Click here for bigger photo!

Photo © Justin Cederholm



Sorry, didn't mean to hijack this thread  Smile


User currently offlineNASCARAirforce From United States of America, joined Feb 2005, 3184 posts, RR: 4
Reply 21, posted (7 years 2 months 3 weeks 11 hours ago) and read 5567 times:

Quoting Sluger020889 (Reply 19):
Yeah normally that place is rough in the summer, so hot that we some times just go down to the 8th floor to seek some shade. But just remember, next time just take the elevator down to the gates and shops level and you can find bathrooms and some places to eat.

Oh they are that close to the elevators? Still I am going to wait until the temp drops considerably. There was heat haze issues when the planes were on the runway.

Plus I have this problem with my camera - Camera is a Digital Rebel, but I am using a Quantaray 70-300 lens. It works fine at other zoom levels, but at full zoom auto focus stops working and when I go to take a picture it won't take and I get an Error 99 message on my camera. The camera works fine with the regular Canon lens at all levels, so it makes me think there is a problem with the Quantaray Lens. I haven't gotten around to taking it to a camera shop. I only paid $160 for the lens so I am not going to worry about paying big money for it - I'll just buy another lens instead. It works probably up to 250, which is more than sufficient for Cypress Point Park and close taxi shots at TPA

Quoting Dazed767 (Reply 20):
Ah, I'm usually around 10p-6a. Did you manage to see that L1011 a few weeks back (I made a post, but the lovely admins moved it to the military forum....where nobody would look )

Yeah the RAF L1011. I saw it from the 11th floor of the airport helipad. I went the next day with my camera but it was gone.

There was also that private 777 that was parked at north Continental hangar. I asked my neighbor who works a/c maintenance at Continental and he said they were doing a modification and it belongs to some guy in Qatar he thought. I went to get a picture of it Friday before I headed out to TPA, but it was gone.

Do you still work for Galaxy? Didn't you get hired by them right after we saw the Antonov 225 come in a few years ago?


User currently offlineSluger020889 From United States of America, joined Mar 2005, 456 posts, RR: 1
Reply 22, posted (7 years 2 months 3 weeks 4 hours ago) and read 5549 times:

Quoting NASCARAirforce (Reply 21):
Oh they are that close to the elevators? Still I am going to wait until the temp drops considerably. There was heat haze issues when the planes were on the runway.

Yeah, those four little buildings on the top floor house the elevators down to the airport. I'm surprised that you had heat haze issues, I've shot there in all seasons and temps and never had a problem with it.

I have the Quantaray lens as well for my Nikons, my girlfriend uses it with my D50 from time to time and I've never had a problem.



I would love to fly a cargo plane full of rubber dog shit out of Hong Kong!
User currently offlineDazed767 From United States of America, joined May 1999, 5498 posts, RR: 51
Reply 23, posted (7 years 2 months 3 weeks 2 hours ago) and read 5543 times:

Funny story about that, drop me a line through my profile  Wink

User currently offlineNASCARAirforce From United States of America, joined Feb 2005, 3184 posts, RR: 4
Reply 24, posted (7 years 2 months 2 weeks 4 days 14 hours ago) and read 5523 times:

Quoting Sluger020889 (Reply 22):
Yeah, those four little buildings on the top floor house the elevators down to the airport. I'm surprised that you had heat haze issues, I've shot there in all seasons and temps and never had a problem with it.

It showed up only when the planes were on 36L, 36R was ok, but then again the planes were well in the air by the time they got to the garage when taking off from 36R.

I have the Quantaray lens as well for my Nikons, my girlfriend uses it with my D50 from time to time and I've never had a problem.

I can't figure out why it is acting up only when I zoom all the way to 300mm. It doesn't want to autofocus at full zoom and then it won't take the picture and I get Error 99 on my camara. But if I reduce the zoom a little bit it is ok.

I have no problems with the Canon lens that came with the camera.


User currently offlineDazed767 From United States of America, joined May 1999, 5498 posts, RR: 51
Reply 25, posted (7 years 2 months 2 weeks 4 days 11 hours ago) and read 5523 times:

Might want to post that question on dpreview.com, I'm sure someone will have an answer about that.

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