Sunday, 29 April 2012

Day Eighteen - San Francisco (Oakland) to Las Vegas

Day 18 involved the longest drive of our holiday between Oakland and Las Vegas a distance of around 541 miles. Nonetheless, the drive was pretty good with at least two lanes to choose from along the entire distance. Being the nerdy aircraft fan that I am, I managed to find some aircraft stuff along the way. It was also interesting to see so many wind power generators along the way. At one point, there would have been more than a thousand windmills in close proximity scattered all over a hilltop.

Wind power generators not far from the town of Mojave.

The first aircraft thing was Mojave Airport. This airport serves as a Bone yard for Commercial aircraft, it is also the home of the Virgin Galactic Spaceport. Whilst there we saw some impressive (and famous) aircraft including the Orbital Sciences Stargazer Lockheed L-1011 and a Convair 990. This aircraft was used to test the Space Shuttle's landing gear. We had lunch at Carl's Junior and headed on our way.

The Orbital Sciences Stargazer Lockheed L-1011. I actually have a model of this aircraft at home.
I never expected to see Macchis in the Mojave.
The Convair 990.
Testing my new wide angle lens adaptor with Schuyler and a Convair 990.
This aircraft sits adjacent the 990.
These pods on the back of the wing distinguish the 990 from the DC8 and B707.

Next aircraft stop was at Edwards Air Force Base's North Gate to check out the NB-52 referred to as 'Balls Eight'. You may recall from my previous report on Pima in Tucson, that I looked over 'Balls Three', well this is it's sister aircraft and was also used o support the X-15 Program and many, many more. When looking at the photos below, check out the Mission markings, there are heaps.

NB-52 'Balls Eight'.

Check out the Mission Markings. There are even F-111 Capsule drop tests noted.

Some wide-angle fun.

On our Journey we also stopped at a Pilot Service Station and brought a drink. Check it out:

Talk about a huge drink.
We finally arrived in Las Vegas at around 1630 h and immediately set out to get Maureen a show ticket. She went to see Chris Angel's show 'Believe' at the Luxor Hotel and managed o score a front row seat. 

In all it was a busy day of driving, but we got through it just fine. 

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