2007-12-05

Curious about military flights

This is a question I've been wondering about myself. Mike-El writes:
Hi, Adrian. Would you mind putting the word out to see if anyone knows why we've been getting buzzed by fighter jets the past few days? Being next to the airport out here in Winterville, we're used to all the regular military planes but lately we've been getting F-14s roaring overhead almost every afternoon. Sometimes two or three in formation. My kids love it. All we're missing is Maverick, Goose, and some Kenny Loggins.

7 comments:

Chris said...

I've actually been wondering the same thing myself. Today I was surprised while sitting on North Campus to see an F-15 buzz about 300 yards overhead and do several barrel rolls over the art building. What's the deal?

Mike-El said...

We haven't seen an F-15 yet. Out our way, it's been mostly F-14s and 16s. Usually at about 1000 feet, like you said, and with afterburners aglow. Pretty spectacular, actually. They buzz a several-mile perimeter for fiteen minutes or so and disappear with what I presume is a sonic boom moments later.

And, yeah, it does seem like they're just out "joyriding."

Christopher Byrne said...

Can't be F-14s because they were officially mothballed a few months ago...

Jessica said...

I work at E. Athen's Lowe's, and our Commercial Sales Specialist said that they are practicing for flights that they do over the football games.

But whatever it is, it is SPECTACULAR to watch.

Mike-El said...

Well, Christopher, I guess I don't know what the "F" I'm talking about! (Rimshot)

But...yeah...I had heard about the mothballing but I didh't know if maybe they were still in use for training or something. Turns out I was mistakenly thinking that the F-15s had the cropped delta wing like the F-16.

Now let's get some F-22 Raptors out here!

Tim said...

I called Ben Epps Airport (I didn't know it was Georgia's first airport, but thats what their web page says). Anyway, the military jets are from elsewhere in the southeast, they are doing 'touch and goes' from the airport as a part of a training exercise. I drove up to the top of the north campus parking deck last week to see what was going on. You can see it pretty well from up there looking to the east. The jets come in low and slow then torch it out without actually landing.

Christopher Byrne said...

Back in 1989 or so, I was part of a group on the USS Lexington observing flight operations. The students from Pensacola were starting their first carrier landings. First they would do a touch and go, and then come around for a landing. The choreography of the entire crew was amazing.

Unfortunately, a student crashed his aircraft into the island about 15-20 feet above where we were standing at the moment. 5 people were killed, including the pilot. It is an experience I hope I never have to go through again, and it gave me a whole new respect for those pilots.

The ultimate irony is that the brother of the pilot who dies in that crash was killed when the plane hit the Pentagon on 9/11.

mike-el: It would be great if some are still flying. I have always loved that plance.