Weekend Air Show!

   I’m going to take a break from my usual topic, The Most Incredible Aircraft of All Time, to talk about my favorite event of the year.  It’s not Christmas, Wurstfest, or even an awesome concert.  My favorite weekend is airshow weekend!

   For those of you who may not know what an airshow is, you’re crazy!  It’s the greatest single weekend on earth.  A full weekend of every kind of aircraft you can imagine, and some you can’t, flying around.  There are planes from World War II all the way to the 5th generation fighter of today.  Some of the time is filled with parachuters falling from the sky.  Other performances are by adrenaline junky stunt pilots defying the laws of aerodynamics. 

   This years airshow was at Lackland AFB in San Antonio, Texas.  Lackland is a base at its best.  It is the place for basic training for all in coming airmen of the USAF(United States Air Force).  It is also a MP, and military K9 training base.  Lackland is home to the 149 Fighter Wing, an Air National Guard unit that flies F-16s over San Antonio.  We arrived early so the parking was great and the security line was short but, arrive late and expect to wait for hours.

The show began with a L-39 russian trainer flying around just to entertain for a while.  After a few minutes the C-17 took off carrying a few USAF special forces soldiers.  One if the members jumped out at 5,000ft with an American flag. They then sang the National Anthem and four F-16s flew past behind the flag, an incredible start to an incredible day.

The first part of the show was a lot of WWII fighters and bombers, beginning with the Tora Tora Tora Act.  This is a mock attack of Pearl Harbor in 1941.  Many pyrotechnics were used and after two american aircraft took off a mock dog fight was in progress.  Truly an amazing show.

Around the middle Were the modern fighters both the F/A-18 Super Hornet and the F-22 Raptor put on shows that made you stare in awe at the raw power and maneuverability of our modern Air Force.  The F-22 did maneuvers such as  the power loop where the nose of the aircraft seems to stay in the same spot and the aircraft loops around it.  As well as the power slide, when the F-22 flies straight up till stalls then flies backwards for a short time as gravity brings jim down.  Both the F-18 and F-22 flew high-speed passes that  are at speeds of Mach .99 or around 700 MPH.  They seem to crack the air with a thunderous roar. 

   The last performers of the day were the USAF Thunderbirds.  They are a group of 6 aircraft performing magnificent aerial manuevers in formation.  I will spend my next blog talking about the two major flight teams the USAF Thunderbirds and th US NAVY Blue Angles.

The best weekend all year. Only 365 days to go till the next one.


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