Yesterday I mentioned on the ol’ Facespace social media site that I wanted to drive down to Arlington to photograph the annual air show. Being unemployed, I just couldn’t justify spending the money. Tickets to get into the air show cost $15, and at $3.80 a gallon for gas it would cost me about $35. Fifty bucks is a lot of money for an unemployed IT Specialist living on limited funds. But a long-time friend — who’s also a former boss and budding pilot — offered to pay my way if I make the trip. So I packed my camera bag into the truck and headed down Interstate 5 to Arlington, Washington.
Of course, what road trip isn’t complete without getting a little lost. To be honest, I wasn’t really lost. I know how to get to Arlington, and I’ve driven past KAWO before. My problem was I followed GPS to the main entrance of the airport, and that’s not where I should have been. I should have been at the back of the airport, where the “entrance” is through a canopy of trees over a dirt road. Obviously. I guess I missed the signs, but I eventually found my way. Parking was free and since I have ELDS (Evil Lungs of Death Syndrome), my parking got me a spot up in the front row!
I made my way to the ticket booth and paid for a ticket. Mistake. I met up with my friend and his girlfriend, and he wondered how I got past the gate. Apparently he had already gotten me a ticket. If only we had some of kind of practical devices that we carry with us that allowed us to communicate with one another, like Star Trek… or Alexander Graham Bell.
Since it was around lunch time, we made out way to the food stands for lunch. The walk was fairly long for me and my shitty lungs, so I had to take a break a couple of times. When we got to the concessionaires, I wasn’t very hungry, but I was working on a powerful thirst. It was about 75°F and sunny as hell; a cool beverage was refreshing. After lunch, we caught a tram to the vintage planes. I say “tram,” but it was really a train of large wagons with bus seats bolted to them, pulled by a farm tractor. But hey, it hauled my fat ass to where I wanted to be without an overabundance of gasping for O2.
On the way to the vintage planes, I snapped pictures from the tram like the lazy shit I am. Back on the ground, I walked about the vintage aircraft, taking several shots from cool angles. The featured image above is of a North American P-51B Mustang taken from the wingtip. There was a North American Navion, a de Havilland Beaver, a P-47 Thunderbolt, and even a couple Nanchang CJ-6s. On the Navion, a photographer was taking some pin-up style photos of a model named Ginger. My friend’s girlfriend knew the photographer, so I took it upon myself to sneak a few shots of Ginger on the wing on the 1946 plane.
The air show started at 2:00pm, so we took cover from the blistering sun in the shadow of military vehicles on static display at Camp Adams. Since I only had the AF-S 24-85mm f/3.5-4.5G with me, I wasn’t able to get any good shots of the performing planes. Most of the shots I got were cropped in post, and I really wish I had some good super telephoto glass. After the air show portion, the vehicles of Camp Adams started moving off, so I was able to get a few nice shots of the procession.
My friends invited me to dinner, but I was feeling a bit sick from the heat (or lack of atomic number 8). So, I headed for my truck to head home where I dumped my memory card into Lightroom.