Went to the mounds this afternoon when JFK switched from 31R/L to 22R/L for landings. I got there and it was quiet with only about 5 kids playing in the field. I took a spot to the left of the sand track up to the mound and was alone for about a half hour when two cars showed up and 3 fellow spotters came out. They took up position to my right on the opposite side... did not say hello or even wave yet seemed friendly enough.
Car 1 had one gentleman, older with a scanner, the other car had three young man and an older gentleman remained in the car.
Within 5 minutes, an NYPD cruiser stopped beside the rear car and got out and began to question the gentleman in the driver's seat. I was in plain sight of the officers and continued shooting as if nothing was going on. They would look at me but never requested my attention.
The other spotters returned to their friend and by now everyone was next to the wooden fence talking it up. One of the officers asked to inspect the scanner the one gentleman was carrying. I kept on shooting as if nothing happening.
Finally the officers left and everyone returned to the mound. The gentleman with the scanner left the scene. I made my way over to the other spotters remaining and introduced myself as any friendly NYC spotter should and would :-)
They are church members visiting from Philly. They said the officers were friendly enough but said that scanners were illegal. I kindly told them that was not correct that scanners are not illegal to own or operate but are illegal to operate in a vehicle in New York City.
I think the officers knew this because they never arrested the gentleman with the scanner nor did they summon him.
Anyway, the whole situation seemed to be calm, professional and without incident. We remained up until the sun went down about an hour later and left happy with some nice shots.
Although while I was putting away my camera, quite dark, the special jet blue with the bubbles paint scheme landed :-( I would have killed to get it while the light was still good!
Glad to here you finally made it out to the mounds! Looking forward to seeing some of your shots. What lens did you end up using there? I think the 200-400mm might have too much reach for that location.
Hey mark... yeah. At first it took me a while to figure out the spot LOL. I mean, it isn;t the best spot for the 22L with all those trees... too bad. The 200-400mm was overkill for the side shots, although it is great for nose closeups. The 70-200 or 80-400 would be more ideal yes. So I will likely have to take both next time. I only carried the one camera this time. It was already late so light was low and not enough of it as usual LOL.
I am trying to escape for a few hours again today, we'll see if I can make it. Any special visitors coming today that you know of?
I stepped earlier this monring, and then in the afternoon I hit the mounds. There were a bunch of spotters from England that showed up in two vans, a gentleman from Singapore, and a few locals. I'll try to post some shots later this evening if I can. Action at the mounds seemed to be very slow at times.
It's funny you say that because before I met these guys, I never saw any myself. Then again, all I ever did was go to Costco and I am a bit of a lone wolf when I'm trying to focus on shooting plane pictures.
William, that's soooo funny. I have three styles of spotting: Social Spotting, my favorite... hanging with the boys and chatting about planes etc. Target mode: smaller crew, maybe just me and Mark, or Eric or Kaz... but mostly Mark and I as we have a history of it, going after one particular catch... and Strealth mode where I need to concentrate fully on radio chatter and I don;t want to be distracted from the shot I want LOL.
srita95, the first thing you have to do is step out of your car and show yourself snapping. If you're stealth it is harder to see you. However, you typically find it easier to spot spotters during Saturdays and Sundays with temperatures above 65 degrees and full bright sunshine at Panera and The Mounds... HoBe maybe... the other spots, you will usually only find the locals, and even then we love spotting from or near our cars whenever possible.
Srita95.....check out the spotting guide on the forum for locations. Additionally, you'll see more spotters now that the weather is getting better, the days are getting longer, etc. I concur with Manny on the various spotting modes he mentions. Depending on the runways being used, the time of day (you want to have favorable light as opposed to having your shots back lite), will more or less dictate where one may spot from.
Jamaica, New York, United States, 111046035586548, Jamaica, New York
Srita95, When the weather is nice is usually when you will see a lot of spotters. I went to the Costco parking lot for about an hour last week and it was a lot of fun for the 31R arrivals. 31L arrivals are a bit further away, but with a good pair of binoculars, you could have a nice view. I am not much into the photography aspect seeing as I only have a Canon P&S which can't compete with a DSLR and the zoom lenses that our fellow spotters are at. The spotting maps show good info of where to go based on the RY in use. The mounds are just N. of RYS 22L/R just behind a PS in southeastern queens.
I'm a bit of a lone wolf too, but I'd like to see some of you guys one day! The only person I have ever seen was Mark, and that's it. Ah I did see someone else at Costco when AF1 came in on March 29 but never knew who it was... Anyway, maybe I'll get more time to spot on the weekends after school is over.