Just friggin' cool


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Just friggin\' cool

On my way to work this morning (I have about a 1-hr commute) I was driving past FFZ and saw an AH-64 landing at the Boeing plant. I see them occasionaly in the moring doing shakedown flights over the indian reserve on the north side of the 202. Usually they takeoff, head North, cross the 202 and make one, big sweeping turn back south to return to the plant. Usually they'll have a White w/red and orange Huey following them as either a spotter or safety-type deal. Cool.

As I'm driving up Higley (the N-S road that runs along the East border of FFZ and the plant) I hear this hum. I look up and about 100ft AGL I see an Apache (AH-64) fly over head from behind me, following the road north bound, then a few seconds later another one behind him, and a few second later yet another one behind the second. This trend continues until five Apaches cross overhead my car - all at about 100-200ft AGL) and eventually they cross the 202 and make a sweeping right hand turn out over Salt River (South-Southwest of Red Mountain). The sun was just coming up. I had my camera but traffic wouldn't allow me to snap a picture.

It was jsut friggin' cool

And one more piece of my argument that FFZ is one of the cooler airports to fly out of.
Re: Just friggin\' cool

I do not get out much is the AH-64 that big helo?

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never mind I looked it up. Now I just feel dumb
Re: Just friggin\' cool

KSTL is pretty cool too, you can see the F-15s from the Missouri Air National Guard take off. On a similar experience to yours, I was in my backyard and saw two AH-64s fly over at about 100agl. Perhaps the coolest I have ever seen though, was a B52 taking off in KSTL if I remember the airport correctly.
Re: Just friggin\' cool

Yeah Lambert is pretty cool. The F-15s have a departure where they'll go vertical right after takeoff roll to the direction they are departing pull it over the top and roll out on heading at like 10,000 ft. There is an actual name for that specific departure I'll see if I can find it.

We used to get the AV-88s over at ALN (across the river from STL) doing their shakedown flights and the occasional F-18. Nothing like seeing and F-18 in the break at 1,000ft. AGL with the vapor coming off the wing roots!

(edit) Oh we would also get the DC-9 Medivac out of SAFB doing T&Gs on a weekly basis. Several of my very first landings were in the pattern with a DC-9!
Re: Just friggin\' cool

I can't complain much about flying out of Pax River. I've seen F/A-18EF cat launches numerous times standing just 20 feet away. There's nothing quite like waiting for a super hornet to depart with full afterburner before taking the active runway with a student in my little super cessna!!
Re: Just friggin\' cool

When Miramar still had the F-14s stationed there, you'd always see 'em swept-wing in the break. Pretty sweet sight too.
Re: Just friggin\' cool

In addition to 602s comments, FFZ is one of my favorite GA airports simply because it seems to be one of the last "friendly" airports, in the sense that you go to Scottsdale or Deer Valley or Willie, and it's security hell with the gates, etc. Falcon is still and open field where the taxiway to the hangars still crosses the main road.

Still retains a friendly atmosphere. Haven't been to Chandler in a while, so don't know if they've beefed-up making it a fortress with their recent expansions.
Re: Just friggin\' cool

Glendale isn't too bad in terms of Tower friendliness and just being a sleepy little airport.

But yeah FFZ is great. It really is like stepping into a time warp sometimes. Between the old warbirds, the boeing plant and mothballed aircraft and helos around the place as well as the openess of the place it really is a great base of operations!