This is a collection of my blog entries and experiences with flying, and learning to fly. Something I had been wanting to do for quite a while.
You can find all the pictures I've taken here, and read below for my experience.
Specifically, I have a page for my Trips to Oshkosh, the mecca for pilots
I decided to go a bit last minute after failing to secure a fun plane to fly there with (that is FL250 capable and 200kts+ without wind), and I ended up flying commercial to Milwaukee and connecting to a 2H+ bus ride from there since I did not feel like renting a car and driving that much.
I got there on wednesday late afternoon, in time for the evening airshow (shown later down), but I'll give the summary in thematical order.
I'll start with the airplane expo pictures:
Honda still had the same jet for display, hopefully it's that much closer to being for sale :)
Happy Plane :)
The Icon prototypes are coming along nicely
Nice paint job
The cirrus jet is still moving along
The terrafugia transition did a test flight for us
that one is pointy all right :)
Then, a few pictures from the booths:
one of the electrical planes was still there
google glass like device for planes and pilots
Yves Rossy had a booth about his Jetman wing
As always half the attraction are the planes that people bring:
planes of course get parked by type
this looks about 100 years old :)
yes, you can also bring your own Russian jet :)
Now that I've seen the basic things, I've taken more times to see some of the talks, and that's one of EAA's strongest points. Thankfully I got to catch a few talks from famous people like Chuck Yaeger, the two Ruthan Brothers, Dirk flew around the world nonstop in voyager, and Burt known for inventing some of the most innovative planes, including the ones going almost reaching space. You also get to hear from SR71, U2, and F117 pilots, and new pilots like Yves Rossi and his wingman jetwing.
Flying, you're doing it wrong :)
that remotely launched drone didn't work too well
Poor Bob Hoover is getting quite old, but still comes and gives talks
Some of the talks are also at the air museum, and I still enjoy visiting parts of it:
Then, there is stuff that doesn't really belong, but is there anyway, like companies selling cars or other stuff. A few nicer pictures:
original car from Batman and Robin
the jet truck was so wrong and so impressive :)
you indeed want to be nowhere close when it's running (more below)
Honda had its Asimo display. I had already seen it at Disneyland, but since I had a bit of time this time, I figured why not, and went to see it again. It is indeed the exact same show, although it is pretty cool:
Now, the next cool thing at EAA is the great list of impressive airshows. I'll start with daytime airshows. The best airshow performers come for the chance to perform there, including the guy who brings his personally rebuilt harrier. Extra treats this year were Terrafugia who came to fly their car for us, and Jetman who also flew, although at 5000ft for his own safety, making it hard to see him and take pictures that far:
And a nice addition are the night night airshows, fireworks, and the wall of fire finale. Night airshows actually start just before sunset and go into the night:
The video doesn't convey how incredibly loud this truck was :)
I got there too late on wednesday, but some pictures from the thursday airshow:
almost feels like the power to weight ratio of my RC planes
you're not flying straight, son...
still not flying straight...
ok, now you've done it, you're falling...
great, another showoff :)
and the redneck show shooting at their own airplane
landing on top of their truck
ok, that's not supposed to happen either :)
Taking pictures of Jetman was as exercise in frustration, he was moving very fast and very high, so I had my zoom at 60X and following a fast target sure wasn't easy. Still:
he was easier to catch on the way down.
And the finale:
And more pictures from the saturday airshow this time (they're different every day). Saturday, they re-enacted the attack on Pearl Harbour:
very nice collection of zeros
After that, more planes from later wars:
damn, another one who can't fly straight either
there you go, you goof off, you stall and fall :)
They had shockwave, the jet truck, doing a demo:
ok, ready to go
holly shit, it hot and loud, let's get the fuck out :)
After the airshow, they had blues brothers re-enactors who were damn good:
By the time they were done, it was time for the 2nd night show:
And the fireworks with the wall of fire finale:
And that was it for EAA Airventure/Oshkosh:
I had planned to spend most of Sunday at Airventure, but in the end I took of my friends' offer to fly back in his Centurion. This took all of sunday (14H, that was a bit gruling), but eh, I didn't have to take a bus back to Milwaukee to catch my southwest flight back, and got to write a lot of code in the back of the plane when the scenary outside was kind of boring (the first 2/3rd of the trip over flyover America :)
Alliance Municipal Airport, Nebraska, mid america :)
Greg, my former coworker and pilot in chief that day :)
Eventually, we got to more interesting terrain when approaching Utah. I really like the terrain between there and Nevada:
what on earth was this, a bit west of Salt Lake
Our second fuel stop was at Wendover, just by the Utah/Nevada border. This base was involved in training for the 2 atomic bombs that were sent to Japan. They had a small museum inside, although there isn't much left. The end of an era:
While we were visiting France and castles around the Dordogne River, the day wasn't quite over, and I noticed that there was a pilot giving scenic flights around, so I signed us up for that.
Since he wasn't a CFI, I wasn't legally allowed to fly his plane, and since it was a diesel converted C172, it had a few things I wasn't used to anyway. However, I still got do do part of the flight, except when I gave him the controls so that I could spend more time taking pictures (there was plenty to capture). He also did the landing, which not being a CFI to save the landing from a pilot he doesn't know, I didn't blame him for wanting to do. Honeslty, it didn't matter, the highlight of the flight was definitely the scenery.
You can browse all the pictures more easily here.
As the pictures show, this was likely the most scenic 45mn flight I had done anywhere so far: