Tuesday, July 28, 2009


The hotel I am staying at is near one of the approaches for John Wayne Airport, so I spent the evening planespotting.

This is a Frontier Airlines Airbus. I like their tail art. I think they have another plane with a moose or something on the tail.

This is a Southwest Airlines 737. They also sometimes do some interesting plane art. One of their planes is decked out like Shamu.

This is a United Airbus (319?)

Another Southwest 737.

This is an American Airlines 737.

Can't really tell what kind of plane this is, but I do like the lighting effect.

A United Airlines plane. Again, not sure of the type.

Sunday, July 26, 2009

John Wayne Airport

Every so often I get to come out to California. It is pretty nice out here. Anyways, this is the statue of John Wayne at John Wayne Airport in Santa Ana. It is a pretty nice airport and pretty easy to get around.

A shot of the front of the statue.

An overall shot of the statue.

Another shot.

A shot from the side.

An overall shot of the side.

sort of an oblique angle.

On the Flight Over

I'm going to be in California this week. The flight over was pretty smooth and there weren't too many clouds in the sky, so I got a chance to get some decent pictures. I'm not sure what most of these are. I think some of them might be the Grand Canyon, but I'm not sure.

This is Page, Arizona. The dam on the left is the Glen Canyon Dam.

This is the Navajo Power Generating Station, a coal fired plant that uses coal mined nearby. The stacks are some of the tallest structures in Arizona.

I think this is the Grand Canyon. Not sure though.

One of these pictures is the Grand Canyon, I think.

This is the Glen Canyon Dam.

It's kind of hard to tell what stuff is from the air though.

Thursday, July 23, 2009

The Detroit Institute of Arts

As I was heading home from the other office, I decided to stop by the Detroit Institute of Arts. They have a few statues in front of the building, so I decided to take pictures of them.

One of them is a cast of Rodin's "The Thinker"

A less traditional angle for a picture of the statue.

I was looking through the view finder and I like how this one is sort of framed by the columns.

Another less traditional view of the statue.

One of the other statues in front of the DIA.

And another.

A front view of the Museum. It housed in a new building. I've not been there since they've remodeled but I'm thinking I should go one of these days.

Another framed shot of "The Thinker".

Sunday, July 19, 2009

Thunder Over Michigan

This was a pretty good weekend for me. I think I mentioned somewhere else on this blog that I am a huge aviation fan. There was the Dayton Air Show and Thunder Over Michigan which is held at Willow Run Airport (technically in Ypsilanti). As you saw from the Dayton pictures, they had the Thunderbirds. At Willow Run, they had the Blue Angels.

Willow Run airport was formed because Henry Ford was asked to build B-24 bombers for World War II. As a result it is a pretty nice airport. Right now it is being used for cargo aircraft and general aviation (both of which keep it busy). The bomber factory is currently being used by GM Hydramatic. It's actually a pretty impressive stretch of land.

The Yankee Air Force was formed over 20 years ago. Their goal is to get a B-24 that was built in the Ypsilanti plant and given that there are very few B-24's left in existence, this is probably not likely (they do have a Navy version though). A couple years ago, thier hanger caught on fire but they were able to salvage their flying aircraft but they lost a bunch of pictures from the plant and various other bits of World War II items that were donated to them. As a result, they have been trying to raise money to build their facility.

The Thunder Over Michigan Air Shows started a few years ago when they had a gathering of bombers. Every year they have a different theme. This year, they had a bunch of C-130 Transports and some Vietnam aircraft. It's usually a pretty impressive show, although the Blue Angels bring the crowds.

This is a Heritage Flight with a P-51 and F-16. It's still pretty impressive to watch. The P-51 was a World War II aircraft and the F-16 is a modern aircraft, so this shot pretty much spans the history of the Air Force.

This is from another angle.

This is a Hawker Hurricane, the workhorse of the Battle of Britain. It has a V-12 engine.

This is the Avro Lancaster. This particular one is the only one that still flies in North America. The Avro Lancaster is famous as the plane that dropped the skip bombs on the dams in the movie "The Dam Busters" (this was based on a true story).

This is a Corsair in British Regalia.

Another angle of the Hurricane.

This is a Supermarine Spitfire, the thoroughbread of the Battle of Britain.

Another angle of the Lancaster.

Another Hurricane.

Another Spitfire. Because of this angle, you can see the distinctive wing shape.

This is what they called a victory formation. It has the Lancaster, Spitfires, Corsair and Hurricanes.

The UH-1 Huey, the workhorse of the Vietnam War. This particular one is marked like a Medevac Helicopter.

This is a shot of the Huey as it was dropping off troops during a Vietnam Re-enactment.

The A-1 Skyraider in Marine Markings.

The A-1 Skyraider in Navy Markings.

The A-1 Skyraider in Air Force markings.

This is the AC-47 Gunship.

This is a MiG-17.

This is a shot as they were doing a simulated dogfight between the F-4 and MiG-17. The F-4 is closing and turning on the MiG.

As shot of the F-4 Phantom. This one is the only one that is owned a flown by a civillian group.

Another shot.

The is the C-130 that is used by the Blue Angels to carry the maintenance crew and parts.

Another shot.

This is part of the pre-flight show by the Blue Angels. They are heading to their planes.

Another shot just before the flight.

A shot of the Blue Angels Diamond.

Another shot. Amazingly, there is only 18" between the canopy of one plane and the wingtip of another.

This is a shot of a high speed pass. The first I ever got that looked this good. I finally figured out the rapid shot capability of my camera and just panned one of the planes until this shot.

Another shot of a Blue Angels Formation.

A shot of one plane up and one plane down. Note that the landing gear is down on both of them. Also note that the aircraft have tailhooks, this is so they can land on an aircraft carrier.

A shot of the diamond with landing gear down.

A shot of the diamond where two planes are up and two are down.

A shot of what's known as an echelon formation.

Another pass. This one wasn't as good though.

A shot as the diamond is breaking up.

Another shot of a formation breaking up.

The Blue Angels Delta.

Another shot of it.

And a shot as the formation is breaking up. Normally this would be done at a higher altitude, but as you can see there was a low ceiling.

I want to thank the Van Buren Township and Michigan State Police for making the exit from the airshow fairly painless. They kept the traffic going very well.