Monday, March 29, 2010


This is cool . . .

Watching these I was thinking:'Oh yeah, low pass fly by in a fighter jet . . . yawn . . . no big deal'- right?

The day I graduated Jump School the C-141 we'd just jumped out of made a low pass over our formation on Fryar Drop Zone; imagine a four-engined jet aircraft the size of a 707 going over your head at under 200' - NOW THAT's IMPRESSIVE . . . then the vid clip gets to #2 low pass fly by - OK it's good to see the spirit of the Red Baron lives on. . . S.L.



  1. Wow. How did the guy in #3 not flinch?

  2. I was at Benning when the Rangers did a full regimental jump to celebrate the activation of the 3rd BN. An entire regiment's worth of C-141's (IIRC) at 500 feet.



  3. That was cool .. thanks for your service to me and my country .. Paula from Nashville TN :)

  4. In my younger days, I worked for tobacco farmers in NC, a few miles from Shady J AFB. One morning early, a BUFF and two F-4s went over at less than 200 ft. You could count rivets, it was that close. Blew us and tobacco leaves all over the field. IIRC, the farmer got about $10K in settlement.

  5. I was hunting on a ridge line in N Nevada and a flight of 5 b-52s came low up the canyon in single file. I could look DOWN into their cockpits and clearly see facial features.

  6. One thing about iffin ya get caught for something like that. Bob Hoover confirmed that he was going to be Chuck Yeager's second instead of the other way around in the X-1 program by doing a bit of a "fighter jet speed and maneuverability demo work" over a town. USAF wasn't amused. Full story in his autobiography. He was quite arguably known as a better pilot than Yeager and they were pretty much best friends, albeit hellaciously competitive at times.

    Hoover is the only known allied airman that escaped from being a POW towards the end of WW II and managed to steal a FW-190 and escape to Holland after escaping his captors.

    Flew some low passes too, when he was doing North American air show demonstrations he more than once RUBBED OFF THE BOTTOM MOUNTED ANTENNAE on the runway. Wasn't reckless, was meticulous in preparations for everything he did. Good autobiography if you like aviation and there's a few youtubes of his airshow performances on the web.

    You might remember him from the iced tea commercial from years back where he poured a cup of tea by rolling a non-aerobatically rated civil aviation passenger plane and didn't spill a drop. No camera tricks, just a well thought out stunt by a very very precise airman.

    But a low flight over a midwestern town and a sonic boom cost him his chance at being lead pilot in the X-1 program and almost erased him as chase pilot and second, too.

    Read the book if you get a chance, way more than I could or would put in a web comment. Had a neighbor growing up USAF/SOCOM-Air Commando who was friends with Hoover and they were both very alike. Low passes like these and the ones they occasionally did weren't a whim like stepping on the gas because you happen to be driving a Ferrari and feel like it. Careful thought and preparation is what allows you to touch the ground or within 50 feet of it at hundreds of knots and fly under bridges and such. Doing it "Maverick" style on a lark often leads to crashes, which is why it's frowned upon in most cases. Difference between REAL EOD/Rangers and the cartoon feller in the "Hurt Locker" movie :-)