Swiss Air Force Axalp 2023 (4K): the best F/A-18 Hornet demo video you’ve ever seen

Swiss Air Force Axalp 2023 (4K): the best F/A-18 Hornet demo video you’ve ever seen

By Dario Leone
Oct 20 2023
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Swiss Air Force Boeing F/A-18 Hornet strike fighters’ incredible display at Axalp 2023.

Filmed by our friend Dafydd Phillips on Oct. 17, 2023 the cool video in this post features the highlights of this year Axalp Air Power Demonstration.

As the footage shows, the Swiss Air Force Boeing F/A-18 Hornet strike fighters put on an incredible display for the 2023 edition of this unique exercise.

Best Swiss Air Force F/A-18 Hornet passes and photos

Phillips explains;

“Practice day for AXALP Fliegerschieassen 2023 on the Ebenfluh shooting range in Switzerland saw an incredible performance from the Swiss Air Force in their F/A-18 Hornets. In no particular order I’ve included some of my favourite passes and photos from the day.”

Axalp 2023 program

Noteworthy the two-day exercise, which was due to take place also on Oct. 18/19, had been canceled on Thursday because of strong winds.

The program of the 2023 edition included strafing runs with F/A-18C/D Hornet fighter jets, a demo display of the Pilatus PC-21 trainer, a Special Forces training operation where a team of six special forces members are dropped to secure an area, firefighting operations and demonstrations of the flight characteristics of the Cougar helicopter and F/A-18, a simulation of an air policing mission where two Hornets intercept a business jet (either a Citation 560 XL or a Pilatus PC-24) and the Patrouille Suisse.

Axalp Air Power Demonstration

Held at Ebenfluh firing range near the summit of the 7,614 feet (2,321m) high Axalphorn mountain in central Switzerland, Swiss Air Force’s Axalp is not just an air show, it is an experience.

The origins of Axalp Air Power Demonstration trace back to World War II (WWII) when, given the threat of a possible invasion of Switzerland by Nazi Germany, General Guisan proposed to retreat Swiss Military personnel and civilian population into the mountains. Because of this threat the Swiss Air Force needed the ability to attack enemy ground forces in the mountains.

To satisfy this requirement the Ebenfluh firing range, located above Axalp village in Brienz Canton Bern, was put into service.

The only event where civilians can see an airshow at 7,614 feet above sea level

Today Axalp Air Power Demonstration is the only event where civilians (regardless of nationality) can see an airshow at 7,614 feet above sea level and see fighter aircraft (specifically the Swiss Air Force F/A-18C/D Hornets and until 2018 F-5E Tiger IIs) firing live rounds.

Photo credit: Dafydd Phillips

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Dario Leone

Dario Leone

Dario Leone is an aviation, defense and military writer. He is the Founder and Editor of “The Aviation Geek Club” one of the world’s most read military aviation blogs. His writing has appeared in The National Interest and other news media. He has reported from Europe and flown Super Puma and Cougar helicopters with the Swiss Air Force.
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