Rare video shows Russian Air Force Tu-160 Blackjack bombers activity in the Arctic

Jun 21 2015 - 23 Comments

Interesting footage from aboard Russian Tu-160s bombers over the Arctic.

The Tu-160 Blackjack is a supersonic, variable-sweep wing heavy strategic bomber.

The Russian Air Force operates a dozen of Tupolevs of this type; only 5 examples are combat capable, one of those has been modernized since it entered active service.

The following video shows some interesting scenes of the Blackjacks operating in the Arctic region: takeoff, formation flying at low and high altitude, and some really cool cockpit footage.

In 2013 two Tu-160s deployed to Venezuela and Nicaragua after a 13-hour flight across the Pacific. On their 15-hour return flight to Engels airbase, in Russia, that included aerial refueling by Il-78 tankers over the Norwegian Sea, the two Blackjacks entered Colombian airspace and were intercepted and escorted by Colombian Air Force Kfir fighter planes for 5 minutes.

H/T Lasse Holmstrom for the heads up


  • Cody3/75

    Beautiful aircraft.

  • Kushil

    as majestic as they look. In 2015 do these matter.. apart from using them to piss of western air forces.

    • tjohn6041

      Yes. More so than any other bomber except arguably the B-2. As far as raw specs go, it is the best bomber ever built. It can carry more farther and faster than any other bomber. It is primarily used as a cruise missile platform, giving it incredible potential as a hit and run platform.
      The Tu-160 is one of my prime complaints about the F-35 becoming our mainstream fighter now because it is too slow to intercept the Tu-160.

    • Roland Lawrence

      Yeh still. Thats all part of the game theory. Its why there is DEF CON 1,2,3. Missiles are totally no use in showing how annoyed you are as there are only 2 states, at home safe and sound and in the air the world has 30 mins left. Russia needs more then 5 of them though to spread out. The USA by comparison has 100s of B1b’s!

      • Jim Mooney

        “The USA by comparison has 100s of B1b’s!”

        Which is why we’re broke and the middle class is dying. Not to mention the 1.4 Trillion F-35, which is the laughingstock of the world.

  • Neil Page

    propaganda.. in another time

  • tim robinson

    Five combat ready?? Its a lottery that either way sees Russia lose… minimum triple that of B2’s combat ready at all times with 6 in work up… triple that of B-1’s

  • roner

    They should be called “B-1ski.”

  • Cary

    Old ass cockpit does not impress. They can deploy two of these??? lmao

    • rats123

      They can actually deploy 1. Just one alone, with the right weapons load, could level entire cities let alone countries.

  • Mongee Phase

    Man! I surrender. lets move on.

  • Ivan Voukadinov

    All of them are combat capable, not just 5. Not sure where this information was taken from…

    The takeoff footage is very obviously Engels airbase, nowhere near the Arctic. Most of the footage with the ground visible also clearly shows towns and land plots, which is also not in the Arctic.

    • Frankie Flyer

      Lada of the sky.

  • Hein S

    Many russian military planes are not operational due to budgetary constraints.

  • Jim Mooney

    Youtube account terminated. I guess the US govt is still hot to downlplay Russian success in Syria. Nice to know we get propaganda the same as other nations ;’)