Friday, November 20, 2009

Air Shows

Sunset.  Cocktails at the beach.   Aqua waters, the sound of waves gently lapping the sugar white sand.  Music from my youth dancing from the speakers (60's stuff)......


Whoa!  What is that?!

The last two sunsets I've been at the beach, sipping a drink and chatting with the natives and tourists (few that there are this time of year), we have been witness to three aircraft in what appears to be a private performance just for us!  They turn and dive and skim along what seems only 10' above the water, whooshing past us in different formations.  No one I've talked to seems to know who they really are, but since Eglin AFB is here in Destin, we assume they are from the base.

I haven't gotten any good photos of them myself, and they probably aren't even these types of aircraft (some guy who recognizes these planes might be laughing his head off at me here).  But I downloaded them from Eglin's website, just to give you a visual.  Wish they'd had a picture of the planes close to the waves, like we saw!

(Nov. 21 update:  Saw them again this afternoon as I was driving along -- they were right above me and yep, there were five this time, all colorful like the two in the photo below!)

Eglin AFB, Florida is the former home of the 39th Bomb Wing and 4135th Strategic Wing. The Eglin range, managed by the 46th Test Wing, is the largest Air Force base in the free world. Located east of Pensacola, its 724 square miles of land range occupies much of the Northwest Florida panhandle. Its 101,000 square miles of air space extends over the eastern third of the Gulf of Mexico, an area extending from the panhandle to the Florida Keys. Seventeen miles of shoreline allow T&E in both a littoral environment and over a land-water interface.

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