Posts Tagged ‘military’

Holy Toledo, Check Out All These Bell Boeing V-22 Osprey Tilt-Rotors Flying Over the Presidio Today – “Military Training”

Monday, July 21st, 2014

Via PresidioSF:

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Yowzer. I myself have never seen a tilt-rotor IRL

Bob Smolenski has the deets and some video:

“Three V-22′s landed at Crissy Field in San Francisco. Followed by 2 Presidential helicopters. Not sure who was riding on them today. Both Pres. Obama and VP Biden are in Washington DC”

The Biggest Coast Guard Cutter I’ve Ever Seen: Presenting the Huge USCGC Stratton – “Sponsored by Michelle Obama”

Monday, July 14th, 2014

Man, this thing is big, this Legend-class “National Security Cutter” USCGC Stratton (WMSL-752).

As seen from AT&T Park:

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First Lady Michelle Obama Commissions the USCGC Stratton

First Lady Christens USCGC Stratton

Introducing the “Sunset Duck Tour” from Ride the Ducks San Francisco – What It’s Like to Ride an Amphibious Vehicle on the Bay

Monday, July 14th, 2014

IMO, writer Tony Hicks has got things spot-on right here in the San Jose Mercury News:

Taking the Kids: Quacking up and around the city by the bay

I just took the media cruise for the new-ish “Sunset Duck Tour” from Ride the Ducks San Francisco - it starts at 7:30 PM.

Here’s Captain John:

Quacking away with people in another duck boat while passing by:

So that’s how things start in Fisherman’s Wharf. Then you begin a circuitous trip to the launch ramps down south of AT&T Park. I’ve never been up so high in an open vehicle, so this was a new experience, kind of like what I imagine the “hop-on hop-off” city bus tours are like.

So off you go, past the working part of Fisherman’s Wharf…

…past the Gary Danko (perennial No. 1 in the Bay Area for “Food, Service and Popularity” per Zagat)…

…through North Beach and on to Chinatown, where you look down upon the #30 Stocktons as you pass them by…

…and then through the tunnel to Union Square and then through SoMA to the launch area.

I gotta say that that was the touristy part of the tour, so check out Beth Spotswood’s take on that in the Tourist Trapped Culture Blog of the San Francisco Chronicle’s SFGate.com if you want more on that.

So finally you get to launch – it looks like this:

And then you’re slowly cruising the bay, albeit near to shore for the most part.

This was the late-starting 7:30 PM sunset cruise so things were getting darker as we made our way past AT&T Park:

You might catch a little spray from the bay but most likely you won’t.

This riding-on-the-water part in a military-style vehicle with not all that much freeboard is an experience – I recommend it.

Then after puttering around on the water, you drive out of the water to take the Embarcadero back to the Wharf.

Looking back at the Bay Bridge through Doris and Don Fisher’s Cupid’s Span skate park / tourist hiking platform – plenty of oohs and ahs at this point here:

Interacting with happy passersby on the way home…

…while zipping past the historic F-Market streetcars:

These ducks look somewhat menacing at night, huh?

And there’s your trip:

So, you need to show up at least 15 minutes early to keep your reservation, I think.

And this tour can get quite cold and windy, needless to say.

If you want to see some more photos, there are some good ones on Yelp.

This was a great experience – I think it’d be good for tourists and locals alike.

 

Remembering “Golden Guardian 2010″ – A Terrorism Drill in SF Featuring Military Dolphins and Sea Lions – Amazing

Friday, June 13th, 2014

Back in the day, we had military drills in San Francisco featuring marine mammals, like “Golden Guardian 2010,” for instance.

I remember as if it were yesterday…

Golden Guardian 2010 will be the sixth Full Scale Exercise (FSE) in the Governor’s Golden Guardian Exercise Series since 2004. The theme of Golden Guardian 2010 is terrorist attacks in multiple ports throughout California. The FSE will be aligned with the National Level Exercise, NLE10 (Improvised Nuclear Device in FEMA Region IX), and will take place over several days in May 2010.”

O.K. then. Joe Eskenazi has a full report with video.

A military dolphin today near AT&T Park:

On the job:

OMG, call Cute Overload. These critters salute when they’re not finding terrorists ‘n stuff:

Here’s a much better photo of a well-trained animal. Hard at work or hardly working? A military dolphin as seen in the Persian Gulf:

Brien Aho / U.S. Navy

Never saw anything like this before…

Heavy-Lift Military Vehicles Invade the Outer Sunset District – Parked Hither and Yon All the Time

Wednesday, May 28th, 2014

Somebody uses this rig for something, I guess.

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There are other big rigs parked out near Sunset Boulevard as well, of course.

Blackhawk Up: Special Forces Flying Low Over the 101

Thursday, February 6th, 2014

Man, these things were low and loud over the freeway.

I’m thinking this is something in the Sikorsky MH-60K or L or M part of the alphabet, owing to the refueling probe, but it’s very possible that Wiki isn’t up-to-date on this topic:

Beaver Surprise! This Tourist Airplane Over San Francisco Used To Be a Part of CIA-Owned Air America, Inc.

Monday, December 16th, 2013

[TRIGGER WARNING: Beaver*]

This 1955 de Havilland Canada DHC-2 Beaver, operated by Seaplane Adventures (aka San Francisco Seaplane Tours Inc) of Mill Valley, Marin County USA  and recently seen flying over Market Street…

…this one…

…used to operate out of Thailand as a part of the CIA-owned Air America, Inc a half-century ago.

See? It’s one of these:

“Six Beavers lined up* at Udorn, probably in 1962 (UTD/Fink/ photo no. 1-JF25-16-PB1)”

Get all the deets right here:

AIR AMERICA: DE HAVILLAND CANADA DHC-2 (L-20) BEAVER by Dr. Joe F. Leeker Last updated on 4 March 2013

To wit:

“DHC-2 (L-20) L-202 833 1 March 62 leased from US Army 54-1693

Service history: arrived at Bangkok in crates on 15 February 62, to be operated under the Madriver Contract AF62(531)-1674, based at Vientiane, but maintained at Udorn (Minutes ExCom-AACL of 23 January 62, in: UTD/CIA/B7F1); assembled by Thai Airways according to contract no. BKK 62-001 (Memorandum dated 9 February 62, in: UTD/Fink/B2F16); officially received at Bangkok on 1 March 62 (Aircraft list of June 62, corrected to Sept.1963, in: UTD/Kirkpatrick/B1F1).

Fate: was to be returned to the US Army in October 62 (Minutes ExCom-AACL of 30 October 62, in: UTD/CIA/B7F1); returned on 21 April 63 (Aircraft list of June 62, corrected to Sept.1963, in: UTD/Kirkpatrick/B1F1); sold to R. N. Nelson Earth Movers as N5220G in March 92; sold to Kenmore Air Harbor Inc, Kenmore, WA, in 92; sold to San Francisco Seaplane Tours, Mill Valley, CA, on 13 July 94; current in March 2004 (request submitted to the FAA on 13 March 2004 at http://162.58.35.241/acdatabase/); current in November 2008 (request submitted to the FAA on 23 Nov. 2008 at http://162.58.35.241/acdatabase/).”

So there you have it. Head on up to the Sausalito / Marin City / Mill Valley area and take a ride on a piece of flying history, if you want. $179 and up.

* Heh.

Presidio Tableau: San Francisco’s Only Large Cemetery Plus the New Tunnel to the Golden Gate Bridge

Monday, November 25th, 2013

A “cut and cover” tunnel they call it:

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This Photo is Your Best Shot of Seeing the Blue Angels During San Francisco Fleet Week 2013 – Federal Sequester Blues

Thursday, June 27th, 2013

A photo from the Presidio, from back in the day, from an innocent time when we didn’t know what a “sequester” was, you know, federal-wise:

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But yes, they would fly them jets ‘neath the towers of the Golden Gate Bridge.