Thursday, August 27, 2009

Right Now...

It's Happy Hour here on The High Plains of New Mexico and we've spent the last half-hour of same watching and listening to this guy orbit over P-Ville (click for larger):
I can't tell which flavor of C-130 this is... it might could be a gunship or a Compass Call.  Either way, the sight and sound of this bird is MOST pleasing to my eyes and ears.... or, "The Sound of Freedom"... as those of us in the bid'niz of breaking things and killin' people what needs killin' are wont to say.  I'm actually beginning to like the sound of these 130s... as opposed to loving the sound of the Fast-Movers that used to live in these parts.  It's all good.

And now... the usual closure for posts of these sorts... it's back outside to continue as we've begun.


  1. You ought to hear what I get to listen to: the 105s going off day and night makes you feel like you might be in a warzone and then the 130 buzzing the house! Not complaining though, I LOVE the noise!! Sounds of freedom!

  2. Buck,
    Looks like a gun ship to me, there is a long barrel sticking out just above and near the back of the wheel well housing.

    We used to get A-10's out of the Willow Grove NAS (it was a Joint Reserve Base) and they were fun to watch. We are far enough away that we are in their marshaling area, where used to wheel around and group up from single flights to two-ship or four-ship formations. I was nice because the A-10 was not that loud. I am not sure where they went but the AF (Active Duty) took them back and the ANG unit that was flying them transitioned to C-130's. Tough break there if you were a pilot.

    BT: Jimmy T sends.

  3. Yup, definitely an AC-130. Various bumps and protrusions on the belly and side in the first pic are different types of imaging/targeting devices...FLIR, radar, etc. You can barely make out the 105mm howitzer barrel in the second pic.

    Resolution isn't quite good enough to make out for sure, but in the second pic you can see what look like cheek protrusions, which would make it an -H model (Spectre) vs a -U model (Spooky).

    Not sure if you caught this, but in the second pic you can see some vapor vortices coming off of the props.

  4. The sound of freedom...I hope. Thanks, Buck, for your patience.

  5. When we lived in McAllen, TX, big planes would take off about dusk and return about dawn - smuggler's blues. Still, I loved to watch the big planes whatever kind they are. We will get to see some planes lined up this weekend at the HHH on Sheppard.

  6. Jenny: I'm glad you're liking what you're hearing. Some folks might could be upset, yanno?

    Jimmy T and Mike: Yup... I think you guys are right. I spent a bit of time with the originals of these photos... enlarging them to 200% or so... and I agree. My original indecision had to do with the antennae on the wingtips, as I'd never seen those before.

    And yeah, Mike, I caught those prop vortices. Cool, eh?

    Cat sez: The sound of freedom...I hope.

    Well, that's certainly cryptic. Wanna elaborate on that one, Cat?

    Lou: I used to have a certain affection for those guys in the big planes down McAllen way. :D

    Don't forget to take LOTSA pics this weekend!!

  7. Hopefully they wheel some jets out of the training hangars and over from the ENJJPT folks because right now all that's out on the "flightline" (mock flightline for training which is where I'm pretty sure they have you ride) are a couple of C-130s and some beat up ground training F-16s.

  8. virgil xenophon28 August, 2009 00:49

    "Compass Call,"--brings back memories--which reminds me, I'm struck by the fact that a HUGE NUMBER of the Vietnam era call-signs/special ops designators, etc., have been maintained unchanged over a period of 40 yrs--names like Spectre, Crown, etc.--an almost unprecedented occurrence. Almost none of the WWII nomenclature survived into the Korean war, and same for Korean ones--few of those designators survived into Vietnam. Don't ask me why, I've no idea, but I've been taking note of it for a long time, but the SEA ones have survived for almost a half-century.......

    Just an interesting bit of esoteric BS.....

  9. We live just close enough to Andover AFB in Western MA that we get flyovers periodically. It's quite comical to see The Oracle and I if we aren't already outside. Racing to the back deck to peer skyward.

    It's usually a Huey, C130 or the ocassional A-10 - wish there were more of the latter, they are one of our faves.

  10. Mike: I was kinda sorta in the same boat as you are in back when I was in tech training (just after we emerged from the Stone Age), in that there were occasional transients at Keesler AFB but not much else. That turned out to be a harbinger of my entire USAF career, come to think on it... given the fact I was only ever stationed on two bases where there was an actual FLYING mission.

    VX: That is an interesting bit of historical info, indeed. Seriously. I'd never given the subject much thought until I read your comment.

    Kris: You and Hubby ain't alone in the "racing outside" regard. I still do this... and I've got a couple o' few years on ya. :D


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