Black Hawk Down! NOT!

If you haven’t read the book “Black hawk Down” and you’re in any way shape or form a military buff, you need to get out and read that book Pronto!

IMG_8279 The black hawk airframe, the UH-60 is one of the wonders of modern aviation and comes in many variations: tactical transport of troops, electronic warfare, VIP transport,  and aeromedical evacuation.  We have a few of them in SE Alaska and one that comes into Haines quite often for medivacs.  The coast guard runs them out of Sitka. Mark Daniel is in the orange shirt holding onto the hand-holds on the tail.  I guess they have those there for maneuvering the helicopter while it’s in a hanger or on the tarmac, but I didn’t get to ask the crew.

IMG_8271 On Saturday, we had two of them on the parade grounds for the public to climb around inn.  The military version that we had here today had both wheels and skids for landing pads and had all it’s guns removed.  The coast guard version had two large fuel tanks on the left side, and no spots for gunners.

IMG_8262c I love helicopters, planes, tanks, air-craft carriers, humvees, and military things in general since the second author I got hooked on was Tom Clancy and his military books: Red Storm Rising, Hunt for Red October, and Cardinal of the Kremlin.  I strongly recommend that military buffs read Red Storm Rising if they haven’t yet.  It’s an amazing depiction of how a full scale cold war era third world war may have played out if it had ever come to that and it’s played out in multiple theaters simultaneously.

In all honesty, I’ve never really talked about guns, tanks, airplanes, helicopters, ships, or anything else military or hunting related, except when he asks.  My dad loves guns and has a collection, and my brothers have guns and get new ones from time to time.  I do have a shotgun a “Home Defender” stainless gun, but I rarely shoot it and it has a trigger lock on it when it’s in the house.

I think it’s best when Mark is young to develop a love for nature, so we read him books about animals wild-life almost all the time.  There’ll be time later on to learn to shoot guns and hit targets and such. 

IMG_8282 I did meet the photographer of the coastguard flight crew.  He’s a canon guy who owns his own gear.  The coast guard owns Nikon gear, but he’d rather not use it so he buys his own.  He had a rubber armored Canon 30D with the 17-40 f/4 mounted plus the battery grip. I do talk to the boys about photography quite a bit, as you might guess, and they love posing for photos whenever we go on special outings, as you can probably tell.

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