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Inside an Antonov AN-2 biplane at Hnjótur Museum, Örlygshöfn, Vestfirðir, Iceland

The aircraft in this view is an ex-Aeroflot Antonov An-2, a venerable Russian workhorse which was famed for its rugged build, extremely short take-off and landing capability, and almost zero tendency to stall. This one was supposedly abandoned in Iceland after a dispute between two pilots. The story I was told is that it had been bought by a museum in North America and was being flown west across the Atlantic by two transit pilots. However the main pilot was more used to flying helicopters than fixed wing aircraft; his co-pilot was so freaked out by his flying their journey that by the time they reached Keflavik, he got out and refused to continue. The aircraft remained marooned in Iceland for some time, until it was bought by Egill Olafsson, who transported it to here in the West Fjords.

His son Kristinn Thor Egilsson established the museum at Hnjóturin Örlygshöfn to celebrate the local, maritime and aviation heritage of his family and the region. It houses an eclectic and fascinating range of planes, vehicles and boats, and is situated in a dramatic landscape by the fjords, close to beaches and sea cliffs… a photographer's dream.

Hnjótur's isolation makes it a relatively unvisited gem on Iceland's tourist trail, part-way between Latrabjarg cliffs and Rauðasandur… but the journey there is as rewarding as the destination. 

[This is one of the panoramas from my June 2013 trip to Iceland. You can explore the other views of this incredible country here. ]

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Copyright: Joby Catto
Type: Spherical
Resolution: 9198x4599
Taken: 18/06/2013
Uploaded: 22/01/2014
Updated: 10/04/2015


Tags: biplane; airplane; cockpit; aeroplane; aircraft; soviet; aeroflot; iceland; museum; aviation; hangar
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