EAA Breakfast Fly-In and Formation Flying Course

Airspan Executive Airport

Jaco Pitout


As I drove to Airspan Executive Airport, I could not help but marvel at how the rising sun in the east, etched the rugged Magaliesburg mountains against the pale blue autumn sky. Fly-In season is upon us! It is promising to be another action-packed year of general aviation! PilotsPost will be looking to attend many of these fly-in events and to bring you all the news.

I have never visited Airspan Executive Airport, though I have heard a lot about this facility, I was not prepared for what I was to see on Saturday. Situated just to the East of Rustenburg, this beautiful facility has it all! A 900m long tarred, lit runway with orientation of 03/21. The indoor facilities include a fully equipped kitchen, a bar and plenty of parking for visitors. The aerodrome is kept in sublime condition and all the facilities are sparkling clean. This airfield is within easy reach of Grand Central, Wonderboom, Rand, Tedderfield and it is only a short hop from Lanseria. Approaches and departures from either direction is not challenging, making it the perfect breakfast fly away venue for novice and experienced aviators. Fanie and the team at Airspan welcomed all visiting crews with open arms to a fantastic breakfast spread. They would also go on to serve delicious burgers and toasted sandwiches for lunch. Certainly, worth the flight or drive out.

Being extremely distracted by the breakfast and the accompanying aroma of barista coffee in the air, I had to tear myself away to capture some of the arriving aircraft.

With most arrivals on the ground and breakfast, and a fantastic flat white, taken on board, it was time to head to the adjacent office park for the presentation of a formation flying course by the ever-popular Lt Col (ret) Jeff Earle. I have had the privilege to fly with Jeff on more than one occasion in a variety of aircraft, from introductions to aerobatics in a Tiger Moth to formation flying in a Harvard. Jeff's love of aviation started at an early age and continues to this day. He has an open rating and have flown everything from a Piper Cub to an Impala. Jeff shared many an anecdote of his flying career, which demanded the attention of all present. During the presentation, it was mentioned on more than one occasion that it is important that all participants in a formation flight “to sing from the same hymn sheet,” placing emphasis on the importance of briefings prior to any such flight taking place. All attendees were also presented with detailed course notes, courtesy of the EAA, to study in their own time. I am not going to spoil the plot by giving you all the information here, if you are interested in formation flying and you have not attended Jeff's course, it comes highly recommended, please try and attend!

Many a hungry pilot emerged from Jeff's course and Fanie and his team was in close attendance to provide sustenance to all attendees.

One then of the big surprises for me for the day was when I positioned next to the runway to capture departures. The ancient quartzite of the Magaliesberg provided the most spectacular backdrop to photograph aircraft against. It was truly a magnificent sight!

If you are an aviator or aviation enthusiast looking for a new fly-out destination, Airspan is the place! I thoroughly enjoyed spending time at this airfield and meeting with old and new friends on a perfect autumn day! Flying season is here!

EAA Chapter 322 Airspan Fly in Nov 2023

Events 2024

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