Blog post udpated based on further monitoring and Edwin’s comment below.
Going through everything I’ve got in my notes and making some generalizations based on some of what I’ve seen and heard lately, I’ve begun wondering if perhaps 1-169 AVN, the GA Army National Guard CH-47 unit at Hunter AAF has begun flying the CH-47F along with B/2-3 AVN.
Based on monitoring and other sources, it appears that there are at least 20 CH-47Fs at Hunter. B/2-3 AVN is supposed to have 14 CH-47s, so that leaves 6 unaccounted for. Note that 08781 is based on a partial intercept and 08787 is based on a photo tweeted yesterday by the Georgia Emergency Management Agency. New information indicates that many of the CH-47Fs already heard were probably temporary assignments: 08081 – Alabama ARNG
08082 – 1-52 AVN, Alaska
08083 – 1-52 AVN, Alaska
08087 – Alabama ARNG
08771 – 1-52 AVN, Alaska
08772 – 1-52 AVN, Alaska
08773 – 1-52 AVN, Alaska
08774 – 1-52 AVN, Alaska
08775 – 1-52 AVN, Alaska
08777 – 1-52 AVN, Alaska
08778 – 1-52 AVN, Alaska
08781 ? – See Note 1
08787 – via photo – see Note 2
Note 1: Yesterday I heard HURRICANE 24, which is a known callsign for Georgia ARNG CH-47s. While it was flying, I heard the end of a CH-47 check in with MARNE radio and pass that it was tail number 781 (when HURRICANE ## flights check in with MARNE, it isn’t uncommon for them to pass the end of their tail number). I’m not certain that HURRICANE 24 was 781 but there is a good chance that it was.
Note 2: This week as seen a Hurricane Exercise in the Savannah area which has included air operations. The Georgia ARNG CH-47s at Hunter usually take part in these exercises. Yesterday, GEMA tweeted this photo:
First, it’s a good snag on a tailnumber, showing 09-08787. Second, due to it being used in the exercise, I’m going to guess that it’s a Georgia Guard helicopter instead of an Army helicopter from 2-3 AVN.
Something odd I’ve noticed is that over the last month I’ve not heard any CH-47s flying as GUARD #####. All of the CH-47Fs I’ve heard so far have used ARMY for the callsign but in recent weeks, most helicopters at Hunter have been using callsign based on types, i.e. APACHE for AH-64, BLACKHAWK for UH-60, CHINOOK for CH-47, KIOWA for OH-58 instead of ARMY. After writing this post, 08787 was heard flying as GUARD 08787, which would indicate that GA ARNG is flying at least one of the new CH-47Fs.
As always, any further information is appreciated. I’ll post further as I figure things out.