Saturday, December 5, 2009


This is cool . . .


(If the vid clip doesn't come up on your email machine, check it out HERE.)

They wouldn't be allowed to do it today, but back in 1959, experienced military pilots would sometimes buzz the Grand Canyon when flying out of nearby Nellis AFB. At the time, RAF pilot Ron Dick was an exchange officer with the US Air Force, training students in a Lockheed T-33. Fellow instructor Bud Pratt recalls that during these Canyon flights, the pilots would fly low enough that water would spray up from the river.

Ron Dick rose to the rank of Air Vice Marshal and later became a fellow of the Smithsonian's National Air and Space Museum and a popular writer and lecturer on military history. He died in 2008. His son Gary Dick, who put together this video from Ron's footage, says, "As a lifelong supporter of the National Parks and a man with a keen interest in bird watching, Ron would definitely endorse the flight restrictions that ensure natural quiet in the parks today."

1 comment:

  1. Some years ago, the Intruders out of NAS Whidbey Island would head to the Radar Bomb Scoring Unit at Spokane and to the range at Boardman, OR. In 1979, a reporter spent some time with VA-196, I believe. Included was the footage of the run through the Cascades. Not over, through the Cascades and along the Columbia Gorge. Below the top of the gorge. The day I headed out to home for my retirement, I watched an EA6B Prowler pop up from the gorege and pass down the lake outside of Sprague, WA, leaving a trail of spray.