Cazaux (BA120)

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ICAO Code LFBC/
Last Validated Mar 2012
City Cazaux
Position 44°32'06"N 001°07'53"W
Runway(s) 06/24
Elevation 84 ft

General

The airfield of Cazaux, located at the West coast, is of special interest to the spotters as two very special units, the CEV of the Armée de l'Air and the 150 squadron of the Republic of Singapore Air Force are stationed here. Furthermore, two French squadrons with French and Belgian Alpha jets are also based here.

Layout

The spotting facilities are very poor at Cazaux. On the south side a large lake blocks any attempts and the southeast and north sides contain a large exercise area. Only the east side approach can be watched, but as the planes are still very high, the photographic possibilities are not that great. During Open Days things improve considerably. After entrance, with a direct left turn, you will pass the hangars of the CEV. If you continue, you will pass the RSAF hangar. Next to the beginning of runway 24, there is a dump area, which during Open Days could be the place where you park your car.

Getting There

Cazaux is located close to Bordeaux. From the north, when passing Bordeaux on the highway E50, take the exit towards Arcachon onto the A660. You can take the exit towards Saguinet, BA120 is sign posted as well. You will now be on the D652 road. Just after passing the small airfield of Villemarie, you can either go right to reach spot 3 or continue straight for spot 1.

Around the Airport

1East side approach runway 24, short finals

The D652 from Arcachon/A660 to Saguinet runs along the east side of the base. First, you pass the road that forks off to Cazaux, D256 'BA120' is sign posted at that cross road. Continue on D652. Next you will pass the secondary gate that is being upgraded. Just after that, there is a fenced off farmland track on your left along the outskirts of a wooded patch. If you park there and will be near the final approach although many aircraft still turn in shorter.

2East side approach runway 24, long finals

South of spot 1, on the other side of the same woodland, the main road crosses a small canal; there is a barely noticeable bridge. Just before this, you used to be able to make a left along the forest. This was basically the only road that led into the forest. Recently this entrance have been barred just like all the other paths. The forest is fenced off as well.

3West side ET008 ramp view

This is the place to be for quick number logging. When driving counter clockwise around the base you will enter Cazaux on D112. Head straight into the village and keep going straight. After a crossroad you will be on the Allée J. Lavigne. You can follow this road all the way to the end. There is a crash gate, park your car out of sight and off road and walk to the gate. To the south of the gate there is a path towards a local resident's garden and the north side is a barren piece of land with some trees. You need to walk up and down a bit to get all Alpha Jets. You can also stay and watch the activity on the flight line. Beware of the locals though, they do not like you being there. Last but not least, the Alpha Jets on the flight line remain there overnight and usually even during weekends.

Because the Rue M. Dufaure runs along the back of the operational area, some peeks can be had of buildings. You have to gain height to accomplish this and be lucky that something is parked in such manner that it can just be seen. Most of the view is blocked by either trees or walls though, both inside and outside the base.

Sometimes the Skyhawks used to turn just over spot 1. (Jos Hoogland)

Frequencies

257.800 / 122.100Tower & Ground
264.725Tower
339.775Departure
142.450 / 275.300Approach
119.600Approach
265.900 / 336.100SPAR
277.950 / 369.225SPAR, SRE

Based Operators

Armée de l'Air
ETO01.008Alpha Jet E
ETO02.008Alpha Jet B+
Alpha Jet E
EH01.067SA330
EC725
DGA-EVvarious
Others
Gendarmerie / SAGEC145
RSiAF / 150 sqM346
BAC / Alpha Jet training SchoolAlpha Jet 1B+

Preserved

120/8-ME/8-NEMystere 4A, on pole
100/NGMS760, with DGA-EV
4Mirage F1, with DGA-EV
23/AVMirage 4P, near main gate along Allée du Commandant Marzac
2240/EH-67SA319B, with EH01.067
SA154/68-DIH-34A, with EH01.067

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