Wednesday, September 12, 2012

Winston Salem Air Show

For Gabe's birthday, we got tickets to the Winston Salem Air Show. We had never been to an air show, so we had only a vague idea of what to expect. We knew there would be planes in the air and on the ground, so we thought they would like that. When we got there, the Army "Golden Knights" parachute team was starting their presentation.

The first jumper just did a straight jump but the second one did a "failed chute" simulation, where he purposely detached one side of his main chute.

The jump started normally enough...
But then one side of his chute "failed",
so he cut the chute away completely
and deployed his backup,

landing safely a few minutes later.
The next sequence had 3 jumpers that started out pretty far apart,
but then angled in toward each other.
They got within inches of each other
and then shot apart as fast as they could.
It was amazing to see how much control they had while falling at 120 MPH.
Their jump plane.
The Army Golden Knights
Next we had some nut in a biplane doing some crazy acrobatics.
The boys thought the Douglas B-26 bomber taking off was too loud. :)
We got to walk around the airfield and look at bunch of different WWII and later era fighters. We also got to see some really incredible acrobatics, including 2 tiger-striped planes that sometimes came so close to one another that they looked sure to collide. 

The final display we saw was a celebration of 100 years of USMC Aviation. They did a simulated rescue in a "hot" landing zone with an Apache attack helicopter, an A-4 fighter and a Harrier all doing bombing runs. 

Looks like they hit something...
At the end, the Harrier came in low and fast to drop napalm.
The results were impressive. The kids didn't really like that part. :)
As we were leaving, we got to see the Harrier hover over the runway and then come straight down for a landing. Again, it was incredibly loud, so the boys didn't like it.

No comments: