Aircraft Day

Trip Start Sep 06, 2012
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Trip End Mar 06, 2013


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Where I stayed
Casino del Sol

Flag of United States  , Arizona
Thursday, January 17, 2013

We dropped off Star at the service center and then we spent the day at the Pima Air and Space Museum and the Aerospace Maintenance and Regeneration Group (AMARG). The museum covers 80 acres and includes more than 300 planes; some were inside hangars but the majority was outside. What an incredible array, from before WWI to present day, private and military planes, passenger and cargo. You name it, it was probably there. My favorite was the SR-71, a spy plane that looks like something Batman would have piloted. Greg's favorite was the B29; this was the type that dropped the atomic bombs on Japan. There were even a couple Canadian built planes.

From the museum we took a bus tour of AMARG, nicknamed the Boneyard. There are more than 4000 planes lined up in the desert sort of like an airport ghost town. Remarkably, most of the planes are still being maintained so that they can be returned to service. The planes are first coated with a black lacquer to seal out the dust and then covered with a white film to moderate the temperature extremes. The military decided to locate the Boneyard in the Arizona desert because of the low humidity and because any rain runs off the compact soil, lessening the risk of the planes sinking into any mud. Because the Boneyard is military property we were not allowed to get off the bus during the tour. It’s too bad because I would have loved to walk among the aircraft. But it’s absolutely amazing to see the number and variety of planes just sitting there, more than 300 acres of them.
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