Welcome to the information pages of The Mach Loop.

The Mach Loop

The Mach Loop is a designated military Low Flying Area (LFA) in the north west of Wales, UK and is famed for its all year round opportunities to photograph military aircraft at very low levels.

The Mach loop gets its name from the town of Machynlleth, bordering the southern edge of the LFA. The Loop is used as a training area and aircraft get as low as 250 feet (76 metres) at speeds of up to 450knots (518MPH). This means that aircraft can actually fly beneath you through the valleys.

The Mach Loop

Note – The low flying times published by the RAF (See Tech Info page) DO NOT relate to The Mach Loop.

Is it raining? No – They may come.
Is it foggy? Yes – They won’t come.
Is it sunny? Yes – They may or may not come.
Is it winter? Yes – They may come. Also, there is less dust, heat haze and other atmospheric distortion. This makes for better photos but colder limbs.
The rule of thumb is, ‘They come when they come. But when they come, it is worth the hours of waiting’.

Before you go, ALWAYS check the weather forecast and ALWAYS take warm clothing, no matter what the season it. The Loop has its own weather micro climate and can be raining and cold, even when its dry and warm 2 miles down the road.

Cadair Idris
Corris Youth Hostel

The top forecast is for Cadair Idris. This station is on the west of The Loop, reasonably near Cad West and reflects the temperatures that are more likely to be experienced at altitude whilst visiting. Compare this to the Corris Youth Hostel weather, down in the valley. There is a marked difference in temperature.