This airbase of the Si³y Powietrzne or Polish Air Force is located south of the city of Poznan, close to Krzesiny. History started here when Nazi Germany built a factory here for construction of Focke-Wulf fighters. After the war, it was taken over by the Russian Air Force which handed it over to the Polish Air Force in 1954. In 2001, the structure was changed here into 31.BLot and 3.elt. At first, it flew with MiG-21MF fighters until they were retired in late 2002 and re-equipped with the MiG-21bis in August 2002. The last MiG-21's of the unit were retired in January 2004 after the squadron flew its last mission on 16 December 2003. The unit became the first unit to receive the F-16 in late 2006. In this period, the airfield was extensively rebuild to house the newly acquired F-16C/D fighters including a large apron and a new shelter area in the north-western part. In the meantime, many efforts were made to comply with NATO procedures as quickly as possible, to assure a proper operational level before transitioning into the F-16. The first acquaintance with this new fighter was during the exercise Sentry White Falcon 2005. Six F-16 aircraft of 183rd FW/Illinois ANG made the crossing of the Atlantic Ocean to fly escort, intercept, and some air-to-ground missions with locally based MiG-29, TS-11 and Su-22 fighters. Only one week later, this base was home for some F/A-18 Hornets of VMFA-134/USMC during exercise Clean Hunter 2005. In 2008, 6.elt moved in to convert to the F-16 as well. At the same time, the command structure was changed to improve compliance with NATO standards and the 31. Skrzydùo Lotnicza Taktycznego (31.SLT) was formed.
The airport of Poznan-Krzesiny is not that big but views are an bit restricted. In the northwest of the runway, a large shelter area for the F-16s has been built and is still quite open. The shelter area in the northeast is out of use. South of the runway, there is a large flightline. Aircraft on it can be spotted from the mentioned spots.
The airbase Poznan-Krzesiny is located about 9 km to the southeast of the Poznan city center on the south side of the A2/E30 highway. It is surrounded by the villages of Krzeziny, Piotrowo and Gluszyna. Driving on the A2/E30 highway, take the exit onto the S11 to the south, towards Gadki and Kornik. Take the first exit before Gadki onto road 433 and take a right here. Follow the road and keep right at the Y-junction. Continue on the road, after a crossing, after a railroad until you arrive in Koninko. Take a right towards the Y-junction and take another right, Drive along the road, surrounded by trees until you see the airport fence at your right. Park your car here, you are now at the airport fence of Poznan-Krzesiny and continue for spot 1. By the way, on the other side of the crossing of S11 and 433, there is the airport of Biernat or Zarniki Gadki, where a preserved DC-3 is used as a landmark for a restaurant.
Around the Airport
1Landing spot with westerly winds
After parking your car as described in the Getting There section, walk some time along the fence in between the shrubberies towards the extended runway. Here, from the fence you will have a view onto the field, including the preserved MiG-21. Also, standing between the shrubberies and the fields, you will be able to photograph all landing aircraft although they are a bit high considering the distance to the landing runway.
2View onto the field
From spot 1, walk back along the shrubberies towards your car. Now continue along the fence towards Krzesiny. At the first T-junction, take a right. park you car at the bend to the left and walk to the gate. From here, you will have a view onto the flightline. However, due to some new fencing both the road and the spot seems to be unavailable.
3Landing spot with easterly winds
From exit S11, after a while, take the left towards Koninko. Before Koninko, take a right towards Dzienniekarska. Take a right here towards Sypniewo to stay south of the airport. After the airport and some forest, take a right onto Ozarowska. Follow this road. After crossing the extended runway, park your car and position yourself.
After walking through the bushes to spot 1, pictures like these will be your reward. Photo Piet Luijken
|9111||MiG-21MF, preserved in office area southeast corner.|
|31.BLT homepage||Homepage of resident 31.BLT, mainly in polish.|