March 25, 2011

On To New Adventures....

What I failed to mention in my previous post is that I have decided to step away from airships for a while. Last Thursday was my last flight. It was very fitting that it was in the blimp I started on about three and a half years ago, Snoopy 2. Its been an amazing experience doing what is probably one of the greatest jobs in the world. I've seen three quarters of the county from 1000 feet and stayed in so many places I probably would have never otherwise known existed. The view was amazing and I'm fortunate enough to now be apart of a group of people who are proud to have been involved in airships. Its really a unique fraternity of people whose friendships I will always cherish.

What's next for me? Well during my blimp flying (you have a lot of time to think up there), I developed a dream so far from my personality that most people don't believe it when I tell them. That dream is to one day own and operate a small organic farm. To make a long story short, I was fortunate enough to get an internship helping out on a biodynamic community supported agriculture farm (CSA) in Pennsylvania. For those who haven't heard of CSA's, they are basically a subscription service where people pay upfront for a seasons worth of fresh produce that they pick up at the farm each week. Its great because the consumer gets amazing fresh produce each week and the farmer has the capital he needs in advance to operate through the season. I just started this week and though it is a lot of hard work, I'm learning a lot and really enjoying it.

I'm not going to say I'm not going to fly another blimp sometime down the road, but if I don't, at least I know I'm happy doing what I'm doing. Thanks for being faithful readers both those that I know personally and the many that I don't. I've enjoyed sharing all of my many experiences with you all.

Perhaps if I have some time I'll start a sequel blog, "Farmin' Ain't Easy."

March 24, 2011

Spring Break Galveston, TX

We arrived with Snoopy 2 in Houston, TX about two weeks ago after a long transit from Tucson, AZ. With stops in Deming, NM, Fort Stockton, TX and San Antonio, TX, we eventually made it to Houston after some windy weather passed. Since it was spring break, I took the ship down to Galveston to fly along the coast to catch the attention of the many vacationers on the beach. I don't know if the pictures do it justice, but the beach was packed. From the air it looked like a pretty nice resort town that was just getting revved up for summer.

March 4, 2011

The Pima Air and Space Museum

On one of our days off this week, a few of us decided to check out the Pima Air and Space Museum here in Tucson. Its an absolutely huge place with hundreds of aircraft on the museum grounds. They also offer tours of the "boneyard" across the street on the grounds of the Davis-Monthan Air Force Base. We decided to bypass the tour of the boneyard to spend more time in the museum which we needed to see all of the aircraft. Everything from old military classics to random rare civilian airplanes can be found amongst the 300 airplanes on the 80 acres of property. Above are some of the pictures I took. When I'm done with editing the video I shot, I'll post it as well.

February 27, 2011

Airplane Graveyard

This past weekend we've been near Tucson, AZ covering the Accenture Match-Play Championship. On our way into town the other day we flew over an airplane graveyard located at an airport called Pinal Airport. As you can see in the videos and pictures, there are a ton of airliners there. I think I counted 30 747's alone plus dozens of 737's, DC-10's, DC-8's and regional jets from all over the world. Really a neat perspective to check out the airplanes from. Some of them looked like they were getting scrapped for parts and scrap metal but I imagine some of them may just be there for storage.

February 22, 2011

Golf at Pebble Beach

The first golf tournament I've flown in well over a year and a half was at the picturesque Pebble Beach Golf Course in Monterey, CA two weeks ago. We had perfect weather for the whole weekend as you can see in the video and pictures. We were even fortunate enough to see a pod of over 50 dolphins out in the ocean, just off the coast.
I quickly was reminded how flying coverage for golf is by far the hardest thing we do in airships. It takes more mental concentration then most people realize to get all of those aerial shots you see on TV. After doing two days of golf in Pebble and another two this past week in Pacific Palisades, I'm starting to feel back into the golf groove.
We're now heading to Tucsan, Arizona for another golf tournament this week so I'll get plenty more practice.

February 11, 2011

Changing Blimps

I've been way behind on blog entries lately.  I recently changed blimps and have been trying to catch up with a bunch of things.  I spent my last flight on the DirecTV Blimp in Miami, Fl last month and then caught a flight to Phoenix, AZ to catch up with Snoopy 2.  It sounds like I'll be on the Metlife blimp for the next few months.  Its always good to be back on Snoopy 2!  Its the airship I started my flying with so it always seems like a homecoming being back on the crew. 

The video of Miami above is a reminder that not everywhere in the country is covered in snow in January.  Below are some pictures and video of the Phoenix area.  Check out this really random thing one of my fellow pilots spotted while flying around one day.  In the middle of a residential area there is an airplane sitting in an empty lot next to a golf course.  It was by far one of the most random things I've ever seen from the air.

January 11, 2011

Happy New Year!

 I spent New Year's Day above the Capital One Bowl in Orlando, Florida.  It was Alabama vs. Michigan State in what I hoped was an entertaining game.  Unfortunately, the marching bands were the only entertainment we had to watch that day as Alabama crushed the Spartans 49-7.  Both marching bands were quite impressive though.  I especially enjoyed "BAMA" spelled out before the game.