Fun Flying Footage

The BAE Hawk T1 (and its American cousin, the Boeing T-45C Goshawk) is a pretty little plane.  There’s some great low level, and even the tiniest bit of splodey in this.

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NAS Whidbey

I’m visiting friends just outside the gate of Naval Air Station Whidbey Island, WA. It’s pretty cool being just along the eastern approach of the station, watching the jets shoot approaches.

NAS Whidbey is the home to the Navy’s EA-6B Prowler  squadrons, which are transitioning to the EA-18 Growler. Whidbey is also home to the West Coast squadrons of the P-3 Orion.

EA-6B Prowler
EA-18 Growler
P-3C Orion

I grew up around here, so I’m fairly used to seeing  jets in the pattern, but I’d certainly forgotten just how much louder the turbojets are compared to civilian high-bypass turbofans.

Old and ugly, like me…

Sure, this is an Army-centric blog, but we have a soft spot in our hearts for Naval Aviation, in particular, the Grumman A-6 Intruder. That’s the plane that took dear old Dad to war and brought him home.

panther

Our favorite Hornette driver, NeptunusLex points us to an Air&Space Magazine article on the “Tadpole.”

When the Intruder entered service in the mid-1960s, it brought a new capability to carrier air power- the ability to locate and attack targets day or night, in any kind of weather.  It may seem hard to believe, but well into the 1990s, few of our airplanes could locate targets except by using the human eyeball.  In the Intruder, a very high resolution radar, coupled with a then-exotic inertial navigation system allowed their crews to fly at 200 feet above the ground, find their targets, and plaster them with a massive payload of bombs.  During Desert Storm, the Intruder was pretty much the only Navy plane capable of deploying smart-bombs like laser guided bombs.

All good things come to an end, however. In the mid 1990s, the Navy retired the Intruder, replacing it in the strike role with F-14 Tomcats, and later, the F/A-18E/F SuperHornet.

[youtube=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7KwP7ZQdTkY]

[youtube=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9kEfuJUsuMM]