Exercise Bold Quest 2017 Recap

Savannah – Bold Quest 2017 in Savannah seemed to wrap up on Wednesday, 1 November 2017. The final sorties were on Wednesday and some of the aircraft, including the Canadian Convair and one of the German Lears left Savannah Hilton Head IAP on Thursday, 2 November 2017. The C-135 supporting the French AF Mirage 2000s also arrived back at Savannah Hilton Head IAP on Wednesday.

 

Mirage 2000D, 674, French AF, ECE01.030 at Savannah-Hilton Head IAP for exercise Bold Quest (photo courtesy anonymous contributor)

 

Mirage 2000D, 604, French AF, ECE01.030 at Savannah-Hilton Head IAP for exercise Bold Quest (photo courtesy anonymous contributor)

 

E/A-18G Growler 169132 from VX-31 at Savannah-Hilton Head IAP for exercise Bold Quest (photo courtesy anonymous contributor)

 

F/A-18F 165668 of VX-31 at Savannah-Hilton Head IAP for exercise Bold Quest (photo courtesy anonymous contributor)

 

The Canadian Convar, using the callsign RESEARCH 09 and the two German Lears, using the callsigns KITE ##, mostly flew patterns over in Fort Stewart’s airspace, switching frequencies to work with various ground stations throughout their sorties. The French AF Mirage 2000s, VX-31 F/A-18s, and 75th FS A-10s worked throughout the Coastal MOAs and Fort Stewart airspace switching frequencies to work with the same ground stations. For the most part, the air-to-ground communications from the Canadians and Germans were encrypted; most of the air-to-ground communications from the fighters were in the clear. The MLAT plots from the Convair and the Lears below give you an idea of what they were doing during a sortie.

 

MLAT plot of C-FNRC, a Convair with the Canadian National Research Council Flight Research Laboratory during a Bold Quest flight as RESEARCH 09

 

MLAT plot of D-CFGA, a Lear 35 belonging to Gesellschaft fuer Flugzieldarstellung, a German company that does military training, flying a Bold Quest flight as KITE 13 (even if it was showing KITE 45)

 

MLAT plot of D-CFGC, a Lear 35 belonging to Gesellschaft fuer Flugzieldarstellung, a German company that does military training, flying a Bold Quest flight as KITE 14

 

Many of the same frequencies used in Bold Quest 2016 were used for Bold Quest 2017, so if future Bold Quests are held in Savannah, there may be a repeat of frequencies used like there are with the Sentry Savannah exercises.

Frequencies
119.100/257.800 – Savannah IAP Tower
124.975/279.575 – Hunter AAF Tower
120.400/353.775 – Savannah App/Dep
125.300/371.875 – Savannah App/Dep
118.400/307.225 – Savannah App/Dep

237.000 – Air Dominance Center Ops
138.625 – Air Dominance Center Ops
293.300 – Air Dominance Center; ECE01.030 Air-to-Air
256.275 – VX-31 Air-to-Air
236.850 – 75th FS “SHARK Ops”
271.100 – 75th FS Air-to-Air

269.025/127.575 – Jax Center Waycross Low
277.400/126.750 – Jax Center Brunswick Low
282.200/124.675 – Jax Center Jekyll Low
285.650/126.125 – Jax Center Statesboro High
363.200/132.925 – Jax Center Allendale/Savannah Low

127.350/279.625/41.300 – Fort Stewart Marne Radio
119.225/228.400 – Townsend Range Control
252.900 – Townsend Range Control
120.950/284.500 – Sealord North Primary

344.375 – Bold Quest Check-In
252.300 – Bold Quest, back up to 344.375?
239.550 – Bold Quest Air-to-Ground
243.475 – Bold Quest Air-to-Ground
256.100 – Bold Quest Air-to-Ground
257.450 – Bold Quest Air-to-Ground
262.850 – Bold Quest Air-to-Ground
265.950 – Bold Quest Air-to-Ground
277.350 – Bold Quest Air-to-Ground
279.175 – Bold Quest Air-to-Ground
283.050 – Bold Quest Air-to-Ground
311.875 – Bold Quest Aerial Refueling
235.950 – Bold Quest
245.050 – Bold Quest
345.625 – Bold Quest
349.650 – Bold Quest

254.475 – AWACS Discrete; Bold Quest or Truman CSG
325.500 – Bold Quest and/or Truman CSG
337.500 – Bold Quest and/or Truman CSG
371.750 – Bold Quest and/or Truman CSG

293.525 – 116th/461st ACW “PEACHTREE OPS”

Callsigns
BISON 81 (KC-135R, 62-3543, 914th AW)
BLUE STAR (JTAC?)
BLUE WATER (JTAC?)
COSO ## (F/A-18F & E/A-18G, VX-31)
DAGGER (JTAC)
GUNSHOT (JTAC)
GUNSTAR 33/34 (F/A-18E, VFA-136) (From USS Truman CSG)
HANGOVER (Controlling Agency)
HARD CHARGER (unknown ship w Truman CSG)
JUICE (Joint Interface Control Officer)
KITE ## (LJ35, Gesellschaft fuer Flugzieldarstellung)
MANTIS (unknown)
NICKEL 21/22 (F/A-18F, VFA-211) (from USS Truman CSG)
NICKEL 31/32 (F/A-18F, VFA-211) (from USS Truman CSG)
PHOENIX 92 (G1, N192PA, Phoenix Air Group)
PIRAT 63 (KC-135R, 61-0315, 6th/927th ARW)
RAIDER (JTAC)
RAGE ## (Mirage 2000, French AF, ECE01.030)
RESEARCH 09 (CVLT, C-FNRC, NRC Flight Research Laboratory)
ROADRUNNER (JTAC?)
ROOSTER (JTAC)
SCORE 26 (P-3?, VX-20)
SENTRY 41/BANDSAW (E-3B, 78-0577, 964th ACCS)*
SENTRY 42/BANDSAW (E-3C, 82-0006, 964th ACCS)
SENTRY 42/BANDSAW (E-3B, 78-0577, 964th ACCS)
SENTRY 60/DRAGNET (E-3B, 80-0137, 966th ACCS)
SHARK 2# (A-10C, 75th FS)
SLAYER (unknown)
STEELJAW 25 (E-2, VX-1)
SUNLINER/LINER 26 (F/A-18E, VFA-81) (from USS Truman CSG)
VALKYRIE 03 (MQ-1?, E/3 AVN?)
VALKYRIE 28 (MQ-1?, E/3 AVN?)
VIKING (JTAC)
VORTEX (JTAC)
VULTURE (JSTARS)
N127AR (C208, 1055 LLC); related to Bold Quest?

*Note: SENTRY 41/BANDSAW (E-3B, 78-0577, 964th ACCS) operating out of Robins AFB

Related Mode-S/ADS-B Codes
249249 – Mirage 2000, 674, French AF, ECE01.030
3B7608 – Mirage 2000, 604, French AF, ECE01.030
3CD01A – LJ35, D-CFGA?, Gesellschaft fuer Flugzieldarstellung
3CD05A – LJ35, D-CGFA, Gesellschaft fuer Flugzieldarstellung
3CD05C – LJ35, D-CFGC, Gesellschaft fuer Flugzieldarstellung
AE0237 – KC-135R, 61-0315, 6th/927th ARW
AE038B – KC-135R, 62-3543, 914th AW
AE11E5 – E-3B, 78-0577, 964th ACCS
AE11EA – E-3B, 80-0137, 966th ACCS
AE11EF – E-3C, 82-0006, 963rd ACCS
C02411 – CVLT, C-FNRC, NRC Flight Research Laboratory

 

It was good to have the French Air Force Mirages 2000s in town for a couple of weeks. We don’t get non-US fighters in the Savannah are very often, so they were definitely something a little out of the ordinary to see and listen to. If they come back next year, maybe I’ll more than just a couple of days off to be able to listen to them.

2 thoughts on “Exercise Bold Quest 2017 Recap

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