Maple Flag 45 – Cold Lake – June 2012

Maple Flag 45 – Cold Lake – June 2012

Rapcon Tour to Alberta Canada


Maple Flag 45 held in May & June 2012  at Canadian Air Force Base,  Cold Lake Alberta.

Maple Flag is an international air combat exercise held annually at 4 Wing Cold Lake, Alta., provides Canadian and international aircrews with realistic training in a simulated air combat environment. The first flying day of the exercise was scheduled for May 28 with the final flying day occurring on June 22.

The goal of Maple Flag was to bring together the aircraft of countries by simulating a UN air campaign against a highly-capable enemy. Taking part in this year’s Maple Flag were aircraft ranging from the Mirage 2000-5, Mirage 2000 D & N variants from the French Armée de l’Air, the “Block 52” F-16D Fighting Falcon from the Singapore Air Force Force.

Blue forces where supplemented from based CF-18s and the Alpha Jets from Top Aces provided Red forces with electronic assistance.

The “Load Haulers”, provided various models of C-130 Hercules transport aircraft, including for the first time the Royal Canadian Air Force’s own CC-130J from 436 Transport Squadron out of 8 Wing Trenton working alongside the French with two C160 Transalls and the RAF with 1x C-130C3A & 1 x C-130C5.

Air to air refuelling was provided by the Canadians with a CC-150 Polaris and a “first for me” a CC-130H from 435sqn, that had been retro fitted for air to air refuelling, using a palletised system holding all the extra equipment required.

Ground troops taking part in the exercise came from Canada, Germany, and the Netherlands, who where supported by the CH-146’s Griffon helicopters from 1 Wing Kingston,. Exercise was was overseen each day, by a single RAF E-3 Sentry from RAF Waddington, SAR cover was provided by  CH-146’s Griffons from417Sqn.

I would like to thank all those crews and photographers who I meet, but a special thank you goes out to the PRO office at Cold Lake for looking after me, at very short notice and accommodating all my needs.

Below are just a few “thumbnails” taken during the week. For a more complete album from my Maple Flag experience, then please contact me directly. Thank you Paul


Gate Guard Cold Lake

48 Mirage2000C

48 Mirage2000C

ZH888-C130J RAF

XV214 C-130C3 RAF

94-113 F-16C

631 Mirage2000D

366 Mirage2000N

65 Mirage2000C

62 & 41 Mirage2000C

48 Mirage2000C

41 Mirage 2000C

C-GITA Alpha Jet

C-GFTO Alpha Jet

Alpha Jet - late evening


188797 - CF18

188766 - CF18

188746 - CF18

166954 F-18E VFA-86

166953 F-18E VFA86

155221 CT155 Hawk

155218 & 212 CT-155 Hawks

146478 CH146

146422 CH146

130607& XV214 C-130

130607 CC-130J

130607 C-130J

96034 F-16D

96034 F-16D

96034 F-16D

94113 F-16C

631 Mirage 2000D

631 Mirage2000D

366 Mirage2000N

65 Mirage 2000C

65 Mirage2000C

62 & 41 Mirage2000C

48 Mirage 2000C

188749 - CF18

166950 F-18E VFA86

130340 KC-130H

218 C-160 Transall

ZH103- E3 RAF