Highway Hornets: How does Finland train its F/A-18 pilots for dispersed ops?

Perttu Karivalo hit the road to join the Finnish Air Force as it practised its long tradition of flying its F/A-18C/D Hornets from the country’s main dual carriageways.

The Finnish Air Force has been using several ‘highway strips’ – or dual carriageways – across Finland for dispersed operations for many years. This practice enables it to base fighters at each strip, making it very difficult to destroy the Air Force on the ground. All the main bases are close to a carriageway, to which fighters can taxi. Because of this, the main bases are used only in peace time; during crises, they are mostly empty as they are likely to be targeted quite early in any possible war.

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