May 29, 2007
May 27, 2007
FROM GLACIER TO GLORY
OPERATION BOLERO II TO SET AVIATION MILESTONE
AS LEGENDARY P-38 GLACIER GIRL COMPLETES HER
HISTORIC WORLD WAR II MISSION
Philadelphia, PA (May 24,2007)—On July 15, 1942, a United States Army/Air Force Squadron departed American soil on Operation Bolero, a World War II aid mission to support U.S. allies in the war torn European theatre. Due to insurmountable weather-related problems en route, the entire squadron of six P-38s and two B-17 Bombers was forced to abort its mission and make an emergency landing on a remote ice cap in Greenland. “The Lost Squadron,” as it has become known over time, drifted miles from its original location and only one P-38, encased in 268 feet of ice, was salvaged.
A recovery and restoration mission taking more than ten years and costing over a million dollars brought this legendary P-38 Lightning, now known as Glacier Girl, to her original flying glory. On June 23, 2007, Glacier Girl will finally complete her fabled World War II transatlantic mission when she departs from Teterboro Airport in New Jersey bound for Duxford, England.
“This monumental flight will bring closure to Operation Bolero as well as pay homage to the brave aviators who beat the odds to survive certain death on that polar ice cap in Greenland during World War II,” said pilot Steve Hinton, who will fly Glacier Girl in her transatlantic flight in June. “It’s thrilling to be a part of this historic event.”
Dubbed Operation Bolero II, after the original WWII operation, the mission remains as challenging as it is historic. Glacier Girl will be accompanied by the P-51 Mustang Miss Velma, a vintage WWII U.S. war bird that will be flown by air show legend Ed Shipley. The P-51 will be equipped with Wingspeed Corporation’s satellite-based aircraft communications technology that will allow anyone on the ground to communicate with the pilots via email communications and receive answers from the cockpit while the planes are in flight. Wingspeed’s network will also allow real time tracking of Glacier Girl’s historic journey exclusively at AirShowBuzz.com, a new social networking and user-generated/content-sharing Web site for aviation enthusiasts.
“It’s an honor to be Steve’s wingman as we trace the same flight path that Glacier Girl flew over 60 years ago,” said Shipley, US Air Force Heritage Flight pilot and founder of AirShowBuzz.com. “Wingspeed’s cutting edge communications technology will allow us to chat with enthusiasts from anywhere on the globe while we’re in flight, so the world can experience this with us.”
After landing, Glacier Girl will remain in Duxford for the renowned Flying Legends Air Show on July 7 and 8, where she will be featured alongside an impressive line-up of over 50 aircraft from both the WWI and WWII era. Glacier Girl will then return to the U.S. for EAA AirVenture in Oshkosh, WI, where she will fly the U.S. Air Force Heritage Flight.
at May 27, 2007
May 20, 2007
Sunday was almost and exact repeat of Saturdays airshow schedule. The fog burned off alittle sooner that Saturday. Was able to use different settings on the camera and think some of the P38 pics turned out better. Only one minor incident in the show today... an F86 was doing a fast flyby and lost one of its drop tanks. Landed out in the grass next to the runway so no harm done. Another great day of Warbird flying! Had a nice cool breeze blowing and I am showing signs of being out in the sun! See the pics here.
The day started out cool and foggy but the people were pouring in the gates to the airshow. I really was surprised how many people were coming in at 0830am! With the fog and no sunlight I didnt take any pictures until close to noon time. Before walking the ramp I visited with my friend Les and took a few pictures of the hangar he is building to house his Lockheed and Wacos. When the sun did some out it it was still hazy but the pictures did come out fairly clear. It was a great airshow... Sea Fury acro, large Warbird flyby with one or more of each type flying, and a flight with three P38s in formation! The flyby pattern here at Chino has to be one of the best I have seen. The flybys are made in a banking turn so that the aircraft appear very close. This sure makes for great photo opportunities. See Saturdays pics here.
May 19, 2007
May 18, 2007
My bags were packed and I was ready to head to bed late Thursday night when something didnt smell right. No... everything for the trip was ready. Airline tickets... check, hotel... check, rent car... check. OH! I know what that smell is! SKUNK! The weather in Texas has been cool at night and I had the windows thrown open to let in the cool breeze. The friendly neighborhood skunk had made a stink and now it was in my house. So much for a restful start to THIS trip! (My excitement before a trip usually doesnt allow any restful sleep anyway.) I turned on the a/c to clear the air and hit the sack.
I caught a mid-morning flight out of DFW to Ontario, CA on American Airlines which would give me plenty of time to visit the Chino airport to see the early arrivals. Three hour flights can be alittle long to go without food so I grabbed an over priced airport muffin right before boarding. I had to laugh because right about the time I was thinking I paid too much for the muffin they announced on the flight that snacks were available... $3 for a bag of M&Ms. HA!
Why Chino, CA for an airshow? One of the most active FLYING museums in the country that flies their World War Two airplanes is in Chino. The Planes of Fame museum puts on one of the best airshows that displays the rarest of the rare in Warbirds. I last attended this airshow a few years ago and wanted to return.
The flight landed alittle early so it was just after noon time when I dropped my bags off at the hotel and made the 20 minutes drive down to Chino. In years past I have not been able to see one of the other museums at Chino, Yanks Air Museum. When I drove by the Yanks hangar I saw that they were only open until 3:00 so I made a quick visit. See the pics here.
Before I made my way down to the airshow ramp I walked thru the Planes of Fame hangars. There is always a new Warbird in the museum that I havent seen before so I dont mind paying the museum admission again. There were two TF51 Mustangs under restoration. I took a walk down the ramp to the main parking area and was greeted by the sight of three FLYABLE P38s Lightnings parked side by side! Cant wait to see them fly on Saturday! There were quite a few airplanes already down on the ramp... see my pics from Friday here.
I called it a day early to rest up for the next two days of airshow. I should be posting more pictures again tomorrow night!
at May 18, 2007
May 16, 2007
May 14, 2007
Check out this picture taken by my friend Kent Wien over Niagara Falls on a trip across the country in a DC-3 a couple weeks ago! To read about the trip go to Kents web site and click on Trips and go to the posts about DC-3 Transcon. He and his dad flew the DC-3 from NY to WA!
Finished up the annual on Friday night and make a quick flight at sunset. Feels good to have burned up the gas in the tanks and have bugs all over the leading edges! A few pics above of one of two mouse nests I found... one by the left fuel tank and one out in the right wingtip!
May 10, 2007
The 170 is in annual again. All is well accept for the fact that a mouse has been making the 170 a home! Spent last night cleaning out the nests and droppings! Now that it is washed out on the inside maybe the smell will go away! More rain is in the forecast for the next week so the return to flying status might be delayed until next week even thou it might be flyable this Saturday. When I pulled it out last week to run the engine after the oil change a Huey came in for a landing a few hangars down!
May 9, 2007
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