. .
West Auckland Airport, 76 Green Rd, Parakai, West Auckland. Road Map..  Airport Ph 09 420.8010



Aircraft Portraits:

Portraits, Next Page.

All photos taken at West Auckland Airport (Parakai). Click on small photos to enlarge.

Tecnam Echo, ZK-CDL: An Italian factory built 'Tecnam P92 Echo Super'.

ZK-CDL was imported in December 2003 for Harvey Lockie. It is currently owned by Kevin Taylor and operated by FlyWest Flying School for flight training, and available 'on-line' for hire by suitably licenced pilots.

Built with Aluminium airframe and skins and able to be flown on a Microlight licence or PPL.

Engine is a Rotax 912S engine. Fuel consumption is 17 L / hour at 110kts (approx 8L / 100km) and like all planes with a Rotax 912 engine, it prefers to burn normal unleaded petrol (Mogas) but can use Avgas if nothing else is available at a remote airfield.

ZK-CDL won the NSAC's Great Northern Air Race, cruising division, in 2004.

Tecnam Echo, ZK-CDL


DynAero 'Club', ZK-WIK

DynAero 'Club', ZK-WIK: Factory built near Dijon, France, this 'DynAero MCR01 Club' was imported in May 2007 by Bryn Lockie of Leading Edge Aviation Ltd. ZK-WIK is built of carbon fibre with oleo suspension, carbon prop with hydraulic CSU, and long range tanks holding 182L giving Auckland to Sydney direct range with several hours fuel to spare.

Engine is a Rotax 912S engine with tuned exhaust and ram air feed. West Auckland to Paraparaumu in 1hr 55mts, West Auckland to Rangiora (Chch) in 3h 29mts.

At the 'NZ Air Games' at Wanaka in Dec 2007 with Bert Gregory at the controls, ZK-WIK was the outright winner of the race for aircraft under 544kg, with a measured speed of 146kts (approx 270 km/h) across the line. ZK-WIK is believed to be the fastest aircraft registered in the Microlight category in NZ... challengers are welcome to try their luck!

Mooney, ZK-CFV

Mooney, ZK-CFV

This Mooney, owned by Leading Edge Aviation and currently stuck to the back wall of their engineering hangar at West Auckland, is the 'Hangar Queen'... the aircraft that sits in the back of the hangar to be worked on when there is a quiet moment between other jobs.

Mooneys are top-of-the-line four seat American aircraft with 360 c.i. engine, high performance and a luxury fitout. ZK-CFV will be a nice aircraft when restored to its former glory, and will be available for hire by suitably licensed RPLs, PPLs, CPLs who are rated for the type and approved by Leading Edge.

Tecnam Echo, ZK-PAB:

ZK-PAB is the long wing variant of Tecnam Echos.

Initially imported for David Horton, this Tecnam Echo was sold to Kevin Taylor in Feb 09 and used for personal flying and ML training at West Auckland.

After being damaged in an runway over-run in 2011, it was sold to a Christchurch owner and has gone there to be restored.

Tecnam Echo, ZK-PAB

Cessna 152, ZK-ZGR:

One of Judith Grant's Cessna 152s, ZK-ZGR is 'on line' with West Auckland Flying School for PPL and CPL flight training, and available for hire by suitably licenced pilots.

Cessna 152, ZK-ZGR

Harman Rocket, ZK-RMD

Harman Rocket, ZK-RMD:

Dave Simpson, who is the Chief Flying Instructor at Parakai Aviation Club, built this Harman 'Rocket'... a derivative of the Rans RV4, which has a 540 ci 6 cylinder engine in place of the usual RV4 360 ci 4 cylinder engine.

The aircraft is beautifully constructed and has very high performance with an excellent power to weight ratio and aerobatic capability.

De Havilland 'Fox Moth', ZK-APT:

A 1930s DH 83C Fox 'Moth', beautifully restored by vintage aircraft expert, Stan Smith who is based at North Shore airfield.

Seen here flown by Stan, attending the Parakai Aviation Club's 2009 'Vintage Day'.


De Havilland Fox Moth, ZK-APT

Cessna 210, ZK- KMF: One of the jump ships that 'Blue Skies Skydiving' previously used to lift tourist skydivers from West Auckland, it then moved to Whangarei lifting skydivers for 'Ballistic Blondes'.

ZK-KMF is a C210-5A with a 540 ci engine. It is fitted with a lift up door for easy exit from the aircraft.

Seen here lifting off runway 25 at West Auckland with another load of jumpers.

The aircraft started its life doing Aerial Surveys in Australia for 'Adastra Airways' working out of Essendon, Melbourne.


Cessna 210, ZK-KMF


Cessna, ZK-KAL

Cessna, ZK-KAL:

Currently 'Blue Skies Skydiving' main skydive lifter at West Auckland, ZK-KAL is specifically modified for skydiving with a powerful motor, and lift up door to allow easy exit.

The aircraft was previously based at Christchurch and purchased by 'Blue Skies' in May 09.

Cessna 182, ZK-DXJ

Cessna 182, ZK-DXJ is another one of the jump ships used by 'Blue Skies Skydiving' for lifting sports and tandem tourist skydivers from West Auckland.

With jumpers typically taking the big first step at 7500 ft or 10,000 ft, the view is magical... looking down over Muriwai and the Tasman to the West, the Kaipara Harbour and up past Dargaville to the North, down to Ruapehu and Mt Taranaki to the South, and over the whole Hauraki Gulf and Coromandel Peninsular and out to the Pacific to the East.

Cessna 182, ZK-DXJ

Falco, ZK-SMR


Falco, ZK-SMR

George Richard built his 'Falco' over nine years from 1994 to 2003, and the result is in the photo... a wooden moulded ply airframe (like the WW2 'Mosquito'), making for a beautiful aircraft with retractable under carriage and a great turn of speed.

ZK-SMR is registered under the 'experimental' class and lives in George's own hangar at West Auckland.



Sea Sprite, Navy Helicopter

The Navy and Air Force helicopters drop in at West Auckland from time to time to carry out operational exercises from small airfields for military and rescue purposes.

West Auckland's close proximity to Whenuapai (where the Navy's Sea Sprites are based) makes it a convenient training field for both Military, and Search and Rescue people to exercise.

Navy Sea Sprite practicing winch drops and retrievals on West Auckland Airport (Parakai).

Cessna 172, ZK-MDV


Cessna 172, ZK-MDV

Paul McSherry's Cessna 172, ZK-MDV has a wide range of instruments and is equipped for IFR (Instrument Flight Rules) flight. It has a high quality internal fitout with grey leather upholstery and everything in 'as new' condition.

ZK-MDV was imported from the USA in May 2008 sharing a container with ZK-MDS, with the aircraft being assembled and set up to NZ specs by Leading Edge Aviation at West Auckland.

Like the smaller two seat C152s, the four seat C172s are known for their reliability and ease of flying, there are many flying around NZ and they are widely used for flight training.


Cessna 182, ZK-SAR ('Search And Rescue'):

ZK-SAR is busy most weekends patrolling the Auckland coast to provide the Coastguard with a good view of the action on the water, and the ability to patrol and search large areas of sea very quickly. In addition to the usual aircraft radios, this Coastguard Search and Rescue aircraft is fitted with marine radios for the observers to communicate directly with surface vessels and the coastguard base.

With West Auckland (Parakai) being in close proximity to the stormy West Coast, ZK-SAR is quite often seen around West Auckland.

The C182 model is similar to the C172 but with more power and space.

Cessna 182, ZK-SAR

Cessna Caravan, ZK-VAN


Cessna Caravan, ZK-VAN

One of the GA operations that have taken place over many years, Parakai Aviation ran a scheduled passenger service between West Auckland and Gt Barrier Island in the 1990s using this Cessna Caravan.

It also lifted tourist tandem skydivers to 13,000 ft and sports skydivers to 20,000 ft making use of the Caravan's Turbine (jet prop) engine with its ability to climb strongly with a heavy load.


Eurocopter AS355 Twin Squirel, 'Police2':

'Police2' is a Eurocopter AS355 'Twin Squirel' with two Alison 400hp engines, which can produce 450hp for single engine operations if necessary.

The police helicopters are one of the emergency services that make use of West Auckland Airport (Parakai) when necessary, seen here on a visit.

Airfields are an important part of the civil defence infrastructure to keep services going in event of earthquakes or other disruption affecting roads and bridges.

Eurocopter 'Twin Squirel', 'Police2'

Rotoway Exec Helicopter, ZK-IOH

Rotoway Exec 162, ZK-IOH:

A two seat kitset helicopter with an 'Exec' 4 cylinder engine with fuel injection giving good performance and relatively low operating costs.

This Rotoway is easily recognised by its 'Jaws' paint job.

Seen here in a hangar at West Auckland, ZK-IOH is normally based on its owner's property and visits West Auckland when it needs an official airfield.



Previously owned by engineer Steve White and based at his farm airstrip at South head. Steve was able to fly or drive to West Auckland when he was working at Leading Edge aviation.

This Jodel is a two seat plane with good short strip characteristics, and often arrived back loaded with venision from Steve's hunting trips down south.

Jodel, ZK-PAS

Rans Coyote, ZK-JLE

Rans Coyote, ZK-JLE:

Sandy Eglinton's 'taildragger' configuration Rans 'Coyote' is an example of a type of aircraft with excellent short strip capability for rough farm airstrips.

The Coyote is a side-by-side two seater with 'rag and tube' construction, and a popular kitset built aircraft type with many flying worldwide in both nosewheel and tailwheel configurations.


Cessna 172, ZK-FGV:

Brewin Aviation's very tidy C172 has the 'Salt Air' livery, 'Northland Best Seen from Above', having been used in the past for scenic flights from Kerikeri, and as a jump ship by 'Blue Skies Skydiving' at West Auckland.

C172s have four seats, fixed undercarriage and either a Lycoming or Continental engine, usually 160 to 180 hp.

The Cessna 172s and 152s are aluminium aircraft built in the USA.

Cessna 172, ZK-FGV



Iain Blyth's Bantam has the optional the rear fuselage with fabric and clear covering.

There are several 'Bantam' aircraft flying out of West Auckland Airport (Parakai). Built with 'rag and tube' construction and a fibreglass pod with windscreen.

Most Bantams use two stroke engines, which are designed for aviation use with two spark plugs per cylinder and separate magnetos. Bantams are built at Te Kowhai Airfield near Hamilton, and are popular with aviators who enjoy back to basics and 'wind in the face' aviation.

Robinson R44, ZK-IMH:

Chris Batton's R44 operates out of his own farm, visiting West Auckland when it needs an official airfield.

The R44 has four seats, a 6 cylinder 540 ci Lycoming engine giving a 100kt to 120kt speed, comparable to most 4 seat fixed wing planes.

Robinson R44 helicopters are not only the biggest selling helicopter worldwide, but are at present also the biggest selling single model of any aircraft including fixed wing types.

Robinson R44, ZK-IMH

Piper Tomohawk, ZK-EVG


Piper Tomohawk, ZK-EVG:

The 'Piper PA 38 Tomohawk' is an aluminium aircraft made in the USA.

ZK-EVG is one of a model that has been widely used by flying schools in the past for initial pilot training. Many of today's commerical pilots did their initial training in a Tomohawk.

Terrier, ZK-EZY:

Paul Hopper's 'Terrier' is a carbon fibre aircraft powered by a Rotax 912 engine.

Most Terriers are under 544kg take off weight and so are registered in the Microlight Class, but ZK-EZY was built with carbon fibre rather than the usual fibreglass, which makes it immensely strong but also heavier so it is registered in the 'experimental' class.

As the photo shows, ZK-EZY is easily recognisable with its yellow and blue colour scheme.

Terrier, ZK-EZY


Gyrocopter (Auto gyro)

Gyrocopter: This type of aircraft was popular in the 1930s but interest moved to helicopters once those became practical.

Despite the superficial similarity to helicopters, 'Auto Gyros' (as they are also known) are a quite separate type of aircraft, where the engine drives a forward motion propeller, and the rotor is free to rotate in the airflow which provides its only drive.

Gyrocopters typically have a short takeoff run and can land in only a few meters. The aircraft type is making a comeback with the benefits of modern materials and aerodynamic design.

Photo taken during the Feb 2007 fly-in.

Alpi, ZK-PKT:

This aircraft was previously owned by Rex Swensson and operated from his own airstrip at Makarau, before he changed to the retractible Alpi 300, ZK-LPX.

Seen here with Rex on late final for runway 07 at West Auckland.

Alpis are Italian aircraft with a wooden airframe and fabric/aluminium cladding. ZK-PKT is an 'Alpi 200' with fixed undercarriage.

Alpi, ZK-PKT

Cessna 152, ZK-MDO

Cessna 152, ZK-MDO:

Paul McSherry's ZK-MDO is a C152 that has been converted from the standard nose wheel configuration to tail wheel. This conversion reduces air resistance (the tail wheel is smaller than a nose wheel and further from the slipstream) which is important for aerobatic aircraft where any inefficiency of the energy conversions between height and speed limit the length of an aerobatic sequence. It also has a larger motor so can do a wider range of aerobatic manouvers than a standard aircraft while retaining safety margins.

Imported from the USA in early 2008, ZK-MDO was set up for NZ conditions by Leading Edge Aviation at West Auckland.


Bantam, ZK-FVM:

Brett Flavell's Bantam is easily visible with its bright yellow pod. Bantams are a 'rag and tube' microlight with fibreglass pod and windscreen, providing simple flying with a reasonable degree of comfort for those who want to have the freedom of the air at low cost.

ZK-FVM has a two stroke two cylinder engines specifically designed for small aircraft with two spark plugs per cylinder driven by separate magnetos. The type is built at Te Kowhai Airfield near Hamilton.

Bantam ZK-FVM

Hughes 500D, ZK-HRF

Hughes 500D Helicopter, ZK-HRF:

Owned by Hawkes Bay Helicopters and based at Napier, this aircraft flew a large number of sorties from West Auckland with a spreading system hanging from the lift hook, during the operations on behalf of MAF to eliminate the Salt Marsh mosquito from the Kaipara harbour from 2003 to 2008.

Although a small aircraft, the USA built Hughes 500 has a turbine engine able to deliver a continuous 360 bhp and is able to lift heavy loads while still having reserve power to operate safely when 'up close and personal', as in this photo taken while dealing to the mosquitos near West Auckland Airport (Parakai).

Titan Tornado 2, ZK-RSR:

Vern Booth's Titan Tornado has an easily recognisable shape, and is a tandem two seater. It has an aluminium airframe and a Rotax 912 (horizontally opposed four cylinder four stroke engine), in 'pusher' configuration.

ZK-RSR shares a hangar with the Sea Rey amphibian ZK-REY and the Rans Coyote ZK-RNS at West Auckland Airport (Parakai).

Titan Tornado - ZK-RSR


Searay Amphibian, ZK-REY

Searey Amphibian, ZK-REY:

Phot here when owned by Gordon Swann and kept at West Auckland. The 'Sea Ray' has a fibreglass hull built much like a fast boat when the wheels are rotated back up under the wing struts, to clear the water. With wheels down it operates like a normal land plane, giving these aircraft a wide range of possible landing places on airfields as well as lakes and rivers.

The Searay is a side-by-side two seater with a Rotax 912 engine in 'pusher' configuration, and shared a hangar with ZK-RSR and ZK-RNS at West Auckland Airport (Parakai).

Rans Coyote, ZK-RNS:

Owned by Jeff Carrol and based at West Auckland Airport (Parakai), the 'Coyote' is a strong kitset aircraft constructed of fabric over tube, and designed for short take-off and landings on rough farm strips... note the big wheels and wide tyres.

ZK-RNS shares a hangar at West Auckland with the Titan Tornado ZK-RSR and a Sea Rey amphibian aircraft ZK-REY.

Rans 'Coyote', ZK-RNS


Robinson R44, ZK-HRR


Robinson R44, ZK-HRR:

Robinson R44s are the most popular 4 seat helicopter in the world, USA manufactured with an aluminium airframe.

ZK-HRR is seen here doing a 'touch and go' approach and pass along runway 07 at West Auckland Airport (Parakai).

Grob, ZK-GMP (glider):

The Grob G102 glider ZK-GMP being towed off runway 25 at West Auckland on 15th March 07 by its Cessna 172 tug plane, ZK-DML.

Murray Wardell of the Auckland Gliding Club flew the Grob to sucessfully establish a new World Gliding Record for a PW5 distance of up to three turn points = 597.1 km, Flight Time 6 hours 45 minutes.

Both aircraft are normally based at Whenuapai, and were pre-positioned to West Auckland for the record attempt because of the close proximity to the West Coast beaches, and its sandhills for lift.

Grob ZK-GMP glider being towed

Cessna 172, ZK-DML

Cessna 172, ZK-DML:

ZK-DML is the tug that pulls gliders into the air at Whenuapai Airbase for the gliding club based there. Most of the gliders were previously based at Hobsonville before that airfield was closed and they moved to Whenuapai.

ZK-DML is seen here being serviced by Leading Edge Aviation at West Auckland.


Corby Starlet, ZK-TOY:

A well named little single seat Corby Starlet powered by a VW 2100cc engine specifically modified for aviation use with two spark plugs per cylinder powered by separate magnetos, and other mods required for automotive engines to be used for aviation.

Built by the current owner's father 30 years ago, this aircraft is aerobatic and has clocked up many flying hours.


Corby Starlet, ZK-TOY


Thunder Mustang, ZK-TMG

Thunder Mustang, ZK-TMG:

Seen here doing a fast pass down runway 07, Simon Gault's Thunder Mustang was a very much appreciated visitor to the 2006 and 2010 fly-ins at West Auckland Airport (Parakai).

The aircraft is a scale replica of a WW2 Mustang figher plane, beautifully built and equipped with a 600 bhp V12 engine giving the sound and fury of the original aircraft in a modern airframe. Note the size of the propeller required to absorb all that horsepower.

A real show stopper, the Thunder Mustang was greatly admired by all the aviation enthusiasts at the fly-ins as it went through its paces.

Helicopter, ZK-HJU:

Seen here in the hover and about to land during the 2006 fly-in.

The very nicely finished helicopter ZK-HJU is noticeable for its unusual sound... despite it's small size it has a gas turbine (jet) engine driving the rotors, which is unusual for a single seat helicopter.

Helicopter, ZK-HJU

Tiger Moth DH82 model


Tiger Moth: First flown in 1931, the De Havilland Tiger Moths were widely used as an initial trainer for pilots in WW2.

Build of wood and fabric covered and braced with wires, these 'stick and string' biplanes with open cockpits are the architype classic aircraft. The passenger sits in the forward cockpit under the wing with the command pilot flying from the rear cockpit, so that weight distribution is less affected between solo and dual.

Engine is a Gypsy Major 4 cylinder in-line engine. These are different from most in-line engines in having the cylinders 'upside down' below the crankshaft so as to allow a clear view forward.

In this photo the Tiger Moth is taking up veteran pilots for a reminscence flight during the 2006 fly-in.


Fletcher FU24, ZK-CRY:

One of the 'Super Air' company's FU24 aircraft, ZK-CRY's was based at Paparoa at the time of this visit. Seen here working out of West Auckland loading cricket baits for dropping on a local farm.

Fletchers are specifically designed for topdressing with a powerful engine, long and thick section wings to generate plenty of lift, and forgiving slow speed flight characteristics .

Topdressing is essential to some types of agriculture, and the only economic way to distribute some loads in difficult country.


Nanchang, ZK-FRU


Nanchang CJ-6A, ZK-FRU:

The Nanchang is a radial engined aerobatic plane, related to the Yak 52.

A nimble and popular aerobatic aircraft seen here in a Russian paint scheme.

Flyitalia, ZK-MDT:

The 'Flyitalia MD-3 Rider' has large areas of clear window low in the doors, giving an excellent view of the terrain.

Another example of modern microlight construction, providing fast and economical flying with a good level of comfort.

Flyitalia, ZK-MDT

Beaver, ZK-CKH

Beaver, ZK-CKH:

The De Havilland 'DHC-2 Beaver' is a very robust aircraft type with considerable lifting capacity built for heavy lifing from rough airstrips. It is often said that if something can be fitted through the Beaver's wide cargo doors, then the aircraft can lift it with its large radial engine.

The particular aircraft, ZK-CKH, is in the livery it wore when used on one of the Trans Antarctic Expeditions.

A different Beaver was also in continuous use at West Auckland in the 1990s lifting many thousands of tandem tourist skydivers.

Cricri, ZK-LBW:

Neville Hay's MC-15 'Cri cri' ('Cricket') always attracts a crowd.

The Cricri is a Michel Colomban designed twin engine aircraft with more than 100 flying worldwide. The are so tiny that it's hard to believe they can lift a pilot... but they can easily, and despite the tiny wings they have a good rate of climb and fly well.

As Neville also flies Boeing 747s, his flying spans a wide range of aircraft sizes.

Cricri, ZK-LBW

Robin, ZK-TZA

Robin, ZK-TZA:

Chris Johnstone's Robin, ZK-TZA, is the four seat model.

Robin aircraft are a well proven French aircraft designed in the 1950s by Pierre Robin. Built of aluminium, this aircraft is one of those that was manufactured in NZ when Alpha Aviation owned the design.

The North Shore Aero Club has a fleet of the smaller two-seat Robins that look similar, also with 'TZ' registrations, which are frequent visitors to West Auckland.


Bantam, ZK-FYF:

Rim Malskaitis' Bantam is a common sight at West Auckland Airport (Parakai), both on the ground and in the air.

ZK-FYF lives at Rim's home on its trailer and is bought frequently to West Auckland to be have the wings installed and be flown. Rim and his mates know exactly what they are doing and can set up for flight very efficiently.

Bantam, ZK-FYF

Cessna 182, ZK-DNZ


Cessna 182, ZK-DNZ:

The Cessna 182 is similar to the popular Cessna 172, but a little larger and faster. The high wing with struts allows for simple construction while still making it easy to provide the required strength.

Seen here as part of a line of visiting aircraft, the four seat Cessnas have always been popular in NZ with many flying both privately and with aero clubs. Cessnas are aluminium aircraft manufactured in the USA.

Piper PA18, ZK-TOW

Piper Cub, ZK-TOW:

Owned by Bay Flight Flying School at Tauranga, ZK-TOW is seen here when the Tauranga Aero Club had group fly-away which stopped at West Auckland for lunch.

Piper Cubs are a fabric covered two seater often used in the past as an initial trainer and now popular as glider tow planes.

Cessna 150 Aerobat, ZK-TWT ('Tweety')

'Tweety' was a training aircraft at West Auckland, before being sold and moving down South.

During its earlier life it was Bryn Lockie's daily transportation when he was living at Dairy Flat and working at Ardmore airfield in 2003. During a 12 month period it clocked up 288 flights between AR and NE with 100% availability (no unscheduled down time).


Cessna 150 Aerobat, ZK-TWT

Portraits, Next Page

We'd like to add to this collection of West Auckland aircraft portraits. If your aircraft is not shown and you have a photo taken at West Auckland, or can improve the description, please send to:

[email protected]

Return to Home Page





      | Home | Circuit | Commercial | Environment | Facilities | Fees | History | Contact us |