Saturday, August 16, 2008

McChord AFB Air Expo 2008 - Saturday and Sunday

The airshow proved to be another world class event. The organizers put on a fantastic airshow featuring a wide diversity of acts and everything semed to flow very smoothly.
Here are some pics from the actual airshow:
Team McChord. McChord AFB is home to two squadrons of C-17 Globemaster III's
This C-17 just emerges from the low clouds on Saturdays airshow

The B-2 Spirit only flew by on Saturday

Tora! Tora! Tora! taxis out to the runway to begin their 20 minute show.
The sky was full of these amazing warbirds, smoke, and giant fireballs as the airplanes simulated the attack on Pearl Harbor.
The F-18F Super Hornet pulls sharply into the vertical
Rhino high speed pass.
The F-15 creating some beautiful vapor as it climbs into the moist air.
F-15C Eagle

The Thunderbirds Diamond climbs high into the sky.
Knife Edge Pass
Thunderbird Six in full afterburner.

Thursday, August 14, 2008

Practice and Arrival: Friday, July 18th

One of the things I love most about airshows is the arrival and practice day. This is when you get a chance to see some more rare aircraft that will be on static display. Also the teams practice earlier in the week and provides many more opportunities to get great photographs.
Friday was no exception.

This is how my day began:

KC-10 Extender on very short final.

This C-5A Galaxy seemed to just stop in mid air. As the jet was overhead it was so close all I could see through the viewfinder were individual tires. At 50mm!! It felt like a hurricane after she passed over.

Eagle West turning sharply overhead.

This is where I was for landing. As you can see, I'm just a few hundred feet from where the jets were touching down. Try to imagine that C-5 Galaxy where this F-15 is.

Thunderbird number one coming in to land.

The F/A-18F Super Hornet doing the high speed pass.

This was one of two F/A-22 Raptors that flew in for the static display.

HH-65 Dolphin

P-51D Mustang

C-130J Herculese

A-10A Thunderbolt II, Warthog


T-38 Tallon

RC-135 Rivet Joint

F-16C Fighting Falcon

McChord AFB Air Expo 2008

If you've read previous posts, you know I was waiting a long time for this show. Unfortunately, at the last minute many changes were made to the show, some major. For example, the MiG Fury Fighters team that flys a MiG-15 and MiG-17 against a FJ-4 Fury canceled a week before the event due to fuel costs. Later all of the other warbird jets backed out as well. For a show that was going to be mainly a jet warbird show, it ended up not having ANY jet warbirds. :( Bummer. But maybe in 2010 it'll work out.

Also, the event brought in record crowds! On Saturday the record was broken as 150,000 people attended the airshow. The next day 227,000 people showed up!

The linuep included the US Navy F/A-18F Super Hornet demo, USAF F-15 Demo, USAF Thunderbirds, a B-2 Sprit flyby on Saturday, Tora! Tora! Tora!, Bud and Ross Granley, Tim Webber (I love your flying, but do you honestly have to sing about being high?), Air Force Reserve Jet Car, MiG-17 from Classic Aviation in Oregon, the C-17 single ship demo, Wings of Blue jump team, and the McChord Airfield assault with three C-17's.

Great show, everyone! There were no awkward pauses, except for the usual 45 minutes it takes the Thunderbirds to taxi out to the runway, twiddle their thumbs, then take off. But that's just how the Thunderbirds roll.

The next posts will feature photos from Fridays practice and arrival day, and the show on Saturday and Sunday, July 19th and 20th.

Arlington Fly-In and Airshow 2008

Instead of posting a bunch of pictures from this event, I decided to record some video. I hung out with the friendly folks at the IAC Chapter 67 tent for most of the time throughout the week and for the airshow made it out to the front of the crowdline.

First up is a video I put together of a friend and fellow IAC 67 member, Terry Burch! He always puts on an incredible airshow routine in his beautiful Zlin 50LA. Sit back and enjoy:

Next up is a video showcasing all of the acts that participated in this years 2008 Arlington Fly-In and Airshow! Celebrating the 40th annual Arlington Fly-In! The Arlington Fly-In takes place at Arlington Municipal Airport in Arlington, Washington.

Performers Shown In Video:
Kent Pietsch - Interstate Kadet
Ken Fowler / Eric Hansen - Rocket Aerobatics - Harmon Rocket
Renny Price - Su-29
Bud & Ross Granley T-6 Texan/ Yak-18/ Yak-55
Frank Donnely - Dr. D's Old time Aerobatics
Red Eagle Air Sports - Christen Eagle II
John Mrazek - Harvard Mk IV
Dan Buchanan - Hang Glider
Terry Burch - Zlin 50 LA
Kathy Hirtz - Wolf Pitts
Julie Clark - T-34 mentor

P.S. Youtube left out the last 6 seconds of the video, which provided time to pause and read the performers list. It's originally 4:08