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Fuerteventura Puerto de la Cruz Airstrip

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Fuerteventura Puerto de la Cruz Airstrip

Old 13th Nov 2019, 09:03
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Fuerteventura Puerto de la Cruz Airstrip

Hi

I'm looking for any info pertaining to the airstrip built at the south of the Fuerteventura island in Puerto de la Cruz.

Although it is now abandoned (apparently some ultralights have landed there not so long ago) does anyone have any info about its actual use? I know they are some rumours of night (!) germans flights there during WWII but I find it hard to believe.

In any case, any input most appreciated.
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Old 13th Nov 2019, 13:45
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I too had heard of the Island(s) being used by the Germans to transport personnel and equipment to South America back in the day. I wonder if (after WW2) the winds were too unfavourable for regular commercial flights ? It's position on the island is extremely discrete and would serve the purpose of such endeavours needing discretion very well.
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Old 13th Nov 2019, 19:36
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When holidaying in Fuerteventura a few years ago I went to Puerta de la Cruz but didn't see any obvious airstrip. We drove to the Atlantic side of the island through a little hamlet called Cofete and in the distance saw a large remote building which reputedly was used a a Nazi Operations centre during WW2. . Not sure if it is true but a Google search suggests this buildingit was used by the Nazi's so it's possible the airstrip may have been connected with this..
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Old 13th Nov 2019, 20:34
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A north/south runway of approx 1000m length seems to be marked in the sand to the NE of the village.
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Old 13th Nov 2019, 21:40
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Originally Posted by DH106 View Post
A north/south runway of approx 1000m length seems to be marked in the sand to the NE of the village.
Indeed. Was there a few weeks ago and you can still see it. I guess that with some cleanup effort it could still be usable.
​​​​​​My question is more about any historical record of actual use, be it during WWII or after.
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Old 13th Nov 2019, 21:51
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Some info on Herr Winter, his villa and the airstrip on
BBC

However desribed locations don’t not seem to fit with the actual location of the strip.


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Old 13th Nov 2019, 23:02
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Originally Posted by SpringHeeledJack View Post
I too had heard of the Island(s) being used by the Germans to transport personnel and equipment to South America back in the day. I wonder if (after WW2) the winds were too unfavourable for regular commercial flights ? It's position on the island is extremely discrete and would serve the purpose of such endeavours needing discretion very well.
I went to the island on holiday in the '90s and my recollection was there was a constant north easterly wind of about 20 knots which would have made operations from this strip highly tricky.
Having said that, I wouldn't put it past Franco to turn a blind eye to the Germans using such a remote part of the island; I've heard they used strips in Spanish Morocco too..
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Old 14th Nov 2019, 08:40
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Originally Posted by Self loading bear View Post
However desribed locations don’t not seem to fit with the actual location of the strip.
Try 28.08824278,-14.49090529 in Google Earth (not sure how to create a direct link). The strip is still pretty visible.

I have no idea it if was used during WWII - It is worth noting that the whole southern part of the island was pretty much gifted by Franco to the Germans and was cordoned down. What they actually did there (except for the completely surreal villa Winter which is an interesting subject by itself) is pretty much unknown and open to lots of speculation. My personal interest is in the aviation aspect of it - if any.

Anyone have an idea of what kind of strip was needed for say a Ju-52 ?

Last edited by atakacs; 14th Nov 2019 at 08:51.
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Old 14th Nov 2019, 10:08
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Anyone have an idea of what kind of strip was needed for say a Ju-52 ?
That airstrip would suffice for Tante Ju.
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Old 14th Nov 2019, 10:09
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Originally Posted by atakacs View Post
Try 28.08824278,-14.49090529 in Google Earth (not sure how to create a direct link). The strip is still pretty visible.

I have no idea it if was used during WWII - It is worth noting that the whole southern part of the island was pretty much gifted by Franco to the Germans nad was closed down. What they actually did there (except for the completely surreal villa Winter which is an interesting subject too) is pretty much unknown and open to lots of speculation. My personal interest is in the aviation aspect of it - if any.

Anyone have an idea of what kind of strip was needed for say a Ju-52 ?
About 500m would be OK but not too much crosswind.
But if the Lutwaffe used it as a staging post for S America, more likely they used FW Condors.
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Old 14th Nov 2019, 18:40
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The strip is just 1000m
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Old 14th Nov 2019, 20:26
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Originally Posted by Self loading bear View Post
The strip is just 1000m
Indeed - still I understand that aircraft at that time had less demanding needs (happy to be disproved)
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Old 14th Nov 2019, 20:51
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two runways?

were there two runways?

Can see the abandoned north/south runway on the satellite image on google maps, but the coordinates posted by atakacs are about 1km south and east of there.

I looked on OpenStreetMap and that shows a second runway running sw/ne, which can just about be seen on the satellite image south of the road

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Old 14th Nov 2019, 21:41
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That could be true.
This German article mentions 2 strips.
Der Spiegel
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Old 15th Nov 2019, 06:54
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Originally Posted by atakacs View Post
Hi

I'm looking for any info pertaining to the airstrip built at the south of the Fuerteventura island in Puerto de la Cruz.

Although it is now abandoned (apparently some ultralights have landed there not so long ago) does anyone have any info about its actual use? I know they are some rumours of night (!) germans flights there during WWII but I find it hard to believe.

In any case, any input most appreciated.
I know the airstrips were used by Spanish AF as training area in the late 80s early 90s, using the old C-212 Aviocar by CASA. A fellow friend use to flight onboard as technical crew. But the C-212 were retired and I cannot recall flight ops with the CN-235 nor the CN-295. Also, but I am not 100% sure, I think SAR/MedVac helos use the landing area when needed if a mission near by is activated. Ultralights might use them every once in a while.
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Old 15th Nov 2019, 20:33
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Maybe it was a U-boat from Casa Winters subterranean U-Boat base that sunk the American Star 20 miles up the coast in 1994! Obviously being such an isolated outpost, the Fuerte Wolf pack didn't get the news.... Unless they bailed with the last planes to Brazil along with the Adolf & the cloning equipment.

On a serious note though, the winds in that area are often pretty abysmal - hold the car door when opening, so it doesn't get wrapped around the door pillar bad & a great place if you're a Dust devil spotter. Although worst in the summer months, the wind Is pretty unpredictable, which makes me wonder what a sensible place it is / would have been for a strip.

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Old 15th Nov 2019, 21:41
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In this film a low pass of the s/n strip.
plus information that the Sw/ne strip was built by Winter and the S/N later by spanish army.
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Old 16th Nov 2019, 08:06
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Originally Posted by Thrust Augmentation View Post
On a serious note though, the winds in that area are often pretty abysmal - hold the car door when opening, so it doesn't get wrapped around the door pillar bad & a great place if you're a Dust devil spotter. Although worst in the summer months, the wind Is pretty unpredictable, which makes me wonder what a sensible place it is / would have been for a strip.
Indeed wind is often significant over there. I wouldn't want to attempt a night landing with a WWII aircraft with zero navaid.

That being said given the extraordinary effort that was put into setting up the "villa Winter" I am fairly convinced that the airstrip was not purely symbolic. I'm sure there muss be some historical record of flight operation there...
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Old 16th Nov 2019, 11:02
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With that cliff to the west and a sea breeze any landing would probably “challenging” on the N/S strip.
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Old 16th Nov 2019, 14:57
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I think that the remoteness and purpose of the strip would outweigh the trickier than normal operating conditions. There's nothing there, near nothing with ease for replenishing normal operations, but for someone who has meticulously planned and desired privacy, close to the Atlantic Ocean it is near perfect. I would imagine that anyone flying into that strip back in the day would have been at the leading edge of competency. Also by operating early/late in the day and/or at night the winds wouldn't have been generally fuerte.
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