I must find time to upload shots from the Reno to Las Vegas flight .
Here’s a map to stop you from fidgeting in anticipation!
I see from this LV tourist map that here is a Berlin -I Park and further north the Humboldt river, in Nevada. I didn’t notice at 31, 000 feet. Coincidental for the fact that I was in the Humboldt University Berlin (Alma Mater of Al Einstein & Co) a year or two later.
While most of the wonderful names of cities, towns and hamlets, across USCON are a product of imagination rather than significance; I’m guessing that the people of this area gave the river and park it’s nomenclature as a nod to the history of Physics. There are many folk around these parts who make their living by knowing quite a lot about it’s Laws
Flying from Reno to Las Vegas Nevada in the same airspace of historic flights such as the BellX1, Bell x2, and the remarkable X-15 was significant for me.
Speaking of which………
Here’s just ONE photo at the Smithsonian on the Mall in Washington DC.
That’s history right there! The 1920s;1940s;1960s
The Udvar-Hazy Center in Chantilly Virginia is a companion facility. I was there as in the Mall DC in 2007 and somehow drawn back in 2008.
Here the Concorde (first operational and French aircraft) is parked up beside the Boeing DASH (1950s prototype for the future viz. 707, 737 and indeed the future of Boeing Corp)
Around the corner is the Wright Flyer. You’re looking at 1903.
Six decades later a cadre with the ‘right stuff” Mr. White; Walker; Armstrong; Adams; Crossfield et al, left their breakfast tables, drove to the base, jumped inside the X15, flew up to 120,000 feet at 2, 500+ miles per hour and returned***.If asked about their day I would imagine it was in their nature to say “Just routine work honey. How was your day?Where are the kids?”
***Some had longevity and drew a pension. Others hadn’t and didn’t
The area beneath the Reno-Las Vegas sky route is littered (and that’s literally) with singe marks on an already naturally scorched terrain. It’s testimony to the fact that bright shiny fast jets do not look well when they augur into ground.
Our commercial flight however was on approach much more sedately at 380 knots over the sprawling suburbia of Vegas. The approach meant a run down one side and then a 180 degree turn which afforded the paying customers a better view of the Strip. Appreciated!
McCarron airport has a small Aviation Hall of Fame that’s worth anyone’s twenty minutes. It ought to divert attention from the banks of slot machines there. Mind you if you find yourself with a lever in your hand at this stage of the visit you may be in trouble!
Maybe you ought to turn back and spend the greenbacks on an addiction specialist in LA.
Nellis AFB by the way is at the other end of the Strip- NE of downtown Vegas. And for good reason! You don’t want to mix B.1 Lancer’s with 737s too often!
The shots in the Skydrive link above are just a few of many. (Besides the folder of Belgique and Maroc) the order as it runs from the top if I recall begin with the Mall in Washington DC ; then humid Cape Canaveral Fla; to scorching Edwards AFB in the Californian High Desert; then a year later at Cape Canaveral Fla. Finally across USCON once more to Nellis AFB. Nevada.
Los Angeles is best left as an impressionistic blur. A blur like much of the city at night. Daytime is hazy too by the way!
Next (in shot order) is up the Pacific coast to San Francisco and some of it’s hinterland. Last shot is south of San Francisco Bay at the Ames Research Facility in the neighbourhood of Mountain View, which is essentially the epicentre of Silicon Valley.
Below is old work horse, the McDonnell Phantom.
Doesn’t the F-4 look magnificent? It’s like a woman with an unusual feature such as a attractive aquiline nose. That’s simile not sexism.
Nellis AFB by night and the F-16.
This would be a confident ‘IT’ girl going out with stilettos as if she were the first girl ever to do so!
Besides plane speaking
After the third or fourth day in Las Vegas, tear yourself away from the blackjack tables and join a 5 hour excursion to the old atomic sites. You’ll be radiating with wonder. The dose comes free if you give the Nevada Energy Commission enough notice. What more d’ ya want?
It would take extra days to enjoy the remote towns of Rachel and Tonopah on the periphery of the ranges. There are reasons I would like to live here but only for a few weeks a year. It’s the location of battle-hardening aerial manoeuvres including that consummate test for AF aviators worldwide, Red Flag.
Later in distance, time and energy, the Canyons, National Parks and towns below.
Then back once more to California’s Mojave’s High Desert where a NASA F-18 displays her finery at Edwards. Tough 10 hours in the searing heat. Billions of dollars worth of technology made it worthwhile.