Yesterday we drove approximately forty miles north to Hill Air Force Base for their annual air show, Warriors Over the Wasatch. Thunderstorms were set to hit throughout the weekend and it poured very early on Sunday morning. We waited until we were all up and fed on Sunday morning before deciding whether to go or not. We never saw a drop of rain once we got there and it was a really fun time!
We arrived around 1:30, parked in a lot just on-base and boarded one of many school busses that were transporting spectators to the air field where the festivities were taking place. Tommy was thrilled to get to ride in a school bus for the first time. The people organizing transportation were very smart and had a pickup truck escorting every other school bus. Before boarding the bus anyone with a stroller or wagon was asked to put it on the back of the truck.
Enjoying the show wearing his pilot’s jacket!
Once we arrived we were greeted with a variety of different military and civilian aircraft on display.
A C-130 cargo plane
The most prominent being a Lockheed C-5 that had the front and rear doors open so we could walk right through this massive aircraft. The C-5 ranks as one of the largest airplanes in the world and it surely didn’t disappoint.
We stopped for a quick photo on one of the side benches. I can’t imagine it’s all that comfortable to hitch a ride on one of these planes sitting on this bench sharing space with tons of cargo.
Who’d have thought that walking through an airplane would be so much fun.
These flags were tacked to the wall of the C-5, the aircraft was from West Virginia.
Two of the four large engines.
The printing on the nose section when it’s lifted up. When it’s closed, this printing is on the bottom of the plane.
A CH-53 Sea Stallion and a KC-10 Tanker jet behind it.
We meandered over toward the control tower to stake out a spot to watch the show snapping photos when we could. The storm clouds over the snow-capped mountains made for some really beautiful shots. Here’s a panoramic of our view:
We think this is a P-80 Shooting Star.
A couple of F-15 Strike Eagles
an F-22 Raptor. This thing looks so fast, even when it’s not moving!
We caught the tail end of a show with some jumpers with the tail of the KC-10 in the foreground.
This guy was doing some glider maneuvers.
Must have been nice to watch the show from up there!
The Red Eagles Biplane Demonstration Team
F-15 twin tails with F-16s behind. The one with the open canopy had just finished a demonstration that scared the crap out of everyone with a sneak fly-by. Tommy asked if we could go back to the car after that.
The Heritage Flight. Two eras of fighter planes flying together, a P-51 Mustang and an F-16. It was a little funny watching how angled the F-16 had to fly to slow down and keep up with the P-51 Mustang. Still pretty cool.
Finally getting ready for the Thunderbirds performance!
We’re ready!! When the show started, the clouds burned off for a bit and the sun came out.
Bill had the camera for all of these shots and while he may have snapped over 400 images, he managed to get quite a few that are awesome. I’m so glad he thought to bring our zoom lens. The clouds and the mountains made them even more beautiful. Just imagine how great they could’ve been if we owned a better camera and lens!
What was that?!?
Couple of pilots chillin on a plane we didn’t recognize watching the show.
And a couple more chillin on an F-15 watching too.
Check out the blur from the jet wash!
Tommy started to fade shortly after the Thunderbirds began their show.
And was out pretty quickly.
But the awesomeness continued…
I know how close they really are and that it looking like mere inches is an illusion, but it doesn’t keep me from saying WOW whenever I see it.
Kind of an awkward shot, but I thought it was pretty cool.
This was the first time either Bill or I had ever seen a Thunderbirds performance, we’ve only ever seen the Blue Angels. They put on a really amazing show!