A B-52H from Barksdale AFB near the eastern coast of Canada on 2 April 2015. (Image © Airman Ashlyn J. Correia / New Hampshire ANG)

Dutch, British, Canadian fighters intercept B-52 bombers

In a show of force that gave fighter jocks of allied nations some fun the US Air Force sent four of its B-52H Stratofortress bombers on a long mission over the Arctic and North Sea this week. The mission appears very similar to what the Russian Air Force is doing with its long-range strategic bombers and gave the Royal Canadian Air Force’s CF-18 Hornets, the Royal Air Force’s Typhoons and the Royal Netherlands Air Force F-16 Fighting Falcons an excellent opportunity to intercept planes of a more friendly nature.

UPDATE 7 April | See here and here for great shots of Dutch F-16s intercepting the Stratofortress.

All over Europe Bears, Backfires and other Russian winged hardware has been causing hundreds of intercepts over the last 12 months, like by RAF Typhoons in January, with the Russian planes sometimes even disturbing civilian air traffic, according to NATO and Scandinavian aviation authorities.

Air intercept
With the pairs of “Buffs” from Barksdale and Minot air force bases, the RCAF, RAF and RNLAF got some good training opportunity. “The bomber crews flying the North Sea route participated in dissimilar air intercept manoeuvers with fighter aircraft flown by the Royal Canadian Air Force, the U.K.’s Royal Air Force and the Royal Netherlands Air Force.”

“In addition to conducting dissimilar air intercept maneuvers with Royal Canadian Air Force fighters, bomber crews on the Arctic leg of the mission transited around the North Pole, providing the crews invaluable training in polar navigation,” Senior Airman Benjamin Raughton of the 2nd Bomb Wing Public Affairs writes.

© 2015 Airheadsfly.com editor Marcel Burger
Featured image (top): A B-52H from Barksdale AFB near the eastern coast of Canada on 2 April 2015. (Image © Airman Ashlyn J. Correia / New Hampshire ANG)

RAF Typhoon ZJ803 during an earlier training (Image © Marcel Burger)
RAF Typhoon ZJ803 during an earlier training (Image © Marcel Burger)
Take-off for a Royal Netherlands Air Force F-16AM Fighting Falcon (Image © Dennis Spronk)
Take-off for a Royal Netherlands Air Force F-16AM Fighting Falcon. Archive photo. (Image © Dennis Spronk)
A RCAF CF-188 Hornet escorting a CC-150 Polaris (Image © Sgt Alain Martineau / DND-MDN Canada)
A RCAF CF-188 Hornet. Archive photo. (Image © Sgt Alain Martineau / DND-MDN Canada)
A B-52H Stratofortress from Barksdale AFB receives fuel from a New Hampshire Air National Guard KC-135R near the eastern coast of Canada on 2 April 2015, as part of the long-range mission dubbed Polar Growl (Image © Airman Ashlyn J. Correia / New Hampshire ANG)
A B-52H Stratofortress from Barksdale AFB receives fuel from a New Hampshire Air National Guard KC-135R near the eastern coast of Canada on 2 April 2015, as part of the long-range mission dubbed Polar Growl (Image © Airman Ashlyn J. Correia / New Hampshire ANG)