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Part 2 of 3, you can see part 1 here

With the Pitts taxiing in to park I left to check out the two newest planes in the Air Force’s arsenal the F-35 Lightning II and the F-22 Raptor Both were roped off and surrounded by guards, sadly the F-22 didn’t fly this year as it did a few years ago when I was unable to go. Both are very sleek machines to say the least, but finding a good angle was tough with the cluttered and boring background, crowds, ropes, and limited area around the planes. Getting in tight was about the only thing to do. Sure wish they had flown…

F-22 Headon CloseupF-22 RaptorF-35 -side view  F-35 Lightning IIF-35-front quarter viewF-35 Lightning IIF-35 cockpit closeup-off centerF-22_F-35 nozzles-abstractF-22 and F-35 tail ends are all angles!F-35 Electro-Optical Targeting System (EOTS)The F-35’s Electro-optical target system (EOTS)  F-35 headon closeup 2shot stitch-BWF-35 rear view BWF-35 rear view vertLook at the size of that afterburner!F-22 rearview-petal horz-BWThe F-22’s Nozzle petals wide openF-22 rearview-petal closeup-vert

Make sure to click through to see much much more with lots of Flight Demos and two of my favorite planes in a Heritage flight.

After the short break the Red Bull Air Force Jump Team dropped in their wingsuits with Red Bull’s Kirby Chambliss in his  Zivko Edge 540

Red Bull-Kirby Chambliss and Jump Team

Kirby Chambliss-RedBull-Vertical Kirby Chambliss-RedBull-Inverted Kirby Chambliss-RedBull-High Speed Pass-smoke


My daughter caught me taking pictures, she’s got a good eye, she framed the heart up nicely.

Then Came the Boom!

Four F-16’s from Hill flew a simulated airbase attack

421st-Blackwidow_Attack_Demo-Takeoff-closeup 421st-Blackwidow_Attack_Demo-Takeoff2 421st-Blackwidow_Attack_Demo-Takeoff1421st-Blackwidow_Attack_Demo-4 ship approach1 388thFW_F-16 afterburner-1 421st-Blackwidow_Attack_Demo-Burner-airbrake flyaway 421st-Blackwidow_Attack_Demo-Burner flyby-wing vapor3 421st-Blackwidow_Attack_Demo-Burner flyby-wing vapor2 421st-Blackwidow_Attack_Demo-Burner flyby-wing vapor 421st-Blackwidow_Attack_Demo-Burner flyby-wing strake vapor2-wide 421st-Blackwidow_Attack_Demo-Burner flyby-wing strake vapor1 421st-Blackwidow_Attack_Demo-4 ship landing break3At the end of the demonstration they treated us to a nice low level 4 ship landing break pass.

Mark Peterson followed with his L-39 Albatross Jet Trainer

Mark Peterson_L39-photo pass Mark Peterson_L39 inverted

Following Mark Peterson we were back to an F-16 for a short flight demo before meeting up with the P-51 for the Heritage Flight.

F-16 Heritage Flight takeoff1 F-16 Heritage Flight-solo-dirty pass clean up1 F-16 Heritage Flight-solo flyby2 F-16 Heritage Flight-solo flyby1 F-16 Heritage Flight takeoff4 F-16 Heritage Flight takeoff3 F-16 Heritage Flight takeoff2Now for the Heritage Flight! Seeing two of my top three favorite planes fly together makes for a great day, if they had added an F-86 Sabre I would have had an aneurysm!

P-51_F-16 Heritage Flight-Headon flyby1Here they come… Hee Hee!

P-51_F-16 Heritage Flight-flyby1

P-51_F-16 Heritage Flight-flyby2Perfect examples of lightweight, fast, agile and flexible fighters with excellent visibility for the pilots these airplanes are what made the USAF a power to reckon with. Ask any pilot that has flown either or both of these planes and they always describe them as “strapping the plane onto you” as opposed to strapping into other planes.

P-51_F-16 Heritage Flight-CrossoverA little cross over, I love the open air brakes on the F-16.

P-51_F-16 Heritage Flight-airbrakes1Coming the other way for one last pass.

P-51_F-16 Heritage Flight-flyby3 P-51_F-16 Heritage Flight-flyby5 P-51_F-16 Heritage Flight-flyby6P-51_F-16 Heritage Flight-flyby7And there they go…


That’s it for this part of the Airshow, the next installment will be all about the Thunderbirds! So come back soon.


Happy shooting!