Saturday, August 10, 2013

Thunder over Michigan 2013 Airshow

America's Yankee Air Museum brought out some beautiful aircraft for this year's airshow at Willow Run Airport in Yspilanti, Michigan. Static displays and tours of many of the planes allow you to get up close to the machines while the airstrip puts the flying maneuvers right in front of the vast crowds. The airport is located just a short distance away from Detroit and Windsor so it is an easy one day adventure from the GTA and Golden Horseshoe areas. The annual show usually takes place around the schedule of the Thuderbirds, however recent US military demonstration cutbacks allowed the show to return to it's regular August timeframe. In 2013 the airshow runs Saturday and Sunday, August 10-11 - the show was the same for both days, with the grounds opening at 9am and closing at 5pm.
Arrive early and enjoy the re-enactment camps and vendors that highlight earlier wars in America's history. Starting at 10:30am the Second World War battle took place in front of the bleachers, involving troopers of the American and German armies as well as vehicles and equipment of the war. Tanks and other tracked vehicles brought the big guns to the war and produced plenty of smoke and excitement. Around noon the show began with opening ceremonies with a 40 foot American flag drop by a parachutist, pictured above.
The F4U-5N Corsair Navy carrier fighter with it's cool bent wings
The F-100F Super Sabre 'the HUN' supersonic jet fighter was used by the Air Force and Air National Guard from 1954 to 1979 and was used extensively in the Vietnam war.
A tanks from the American side blasts away at a German defensive position during the WWII re-enactment
A pair of T-6 Texans trail smoke as they make a pass over centre stage

See more of the warbirds after the jump.

During the Vietnam Air & Ground battle Re-enactment the UH-1 Huey helicopter flies in troops to the battle. These machines were used in all facets of the war including troopships, gunships, search and rescue, command and control, med-evacs, air assault and more. Beginning in 1958 this rotary aircraft was the first turbine helicopter to be mass-produced for service with the army. You could pay to ride this baby and it took a lot of people into the air during the airshow weekend.
'Thunder Pig' Fairchild C-123 Provider military transport aircraft of the United States Airforce
The classic Douglas DC-3 aircraft sits on the tarmac

The Douglas DC-3 joins a number of WWII aircraft in the skies during the re-enactment
Closer views of the T-6 Texan two-seat advanced trainer aircraft. Called the Harvard by the British Royal Air Force the planes was a transition trainer between basic and first-line tactical aircraft. Five of the aircraft were in the Thunder show.

The heritage flight with the F100, F-86 and the P-51 takes time to gather due to the different speeds of the various aircraft. The Mustang and Sabre circled several times before the Super Sabre managed to close ranks with the other aircraft.

Another view of the Douglas DC-3 transport aircraft
Folded wings of one of the 'Gathering of the Skyraiders' aircraft. The Douglas piston engine straight wing, carrier based long range dive-bomber and torpedo attack aircraft fought with the Air Force, Marines and the Navy.
A pair of pin up ladies pose on the wing of a B-25D Mitchell bomber
The impressive B-17G Flying Fortress 'Yankee Lady' heavy bomber was also available for rides








In addition to the airplanes the show also featured two military re-enactments - World War II and Vietnam. The soldiers and tanks fired a large amount of blanks. The Vietnamese battle had troop deployment utilizing a Bell UH-1H Huey helicopter.



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1 comment:

Tyler Shepard said...

Haha that's my tent with the flag.

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