There is wireless internet at the airport we landed in this morning, which is unexpected and delightful. So I took some pics and a couple of videos and here they are.
There was a Canadian Forces Hercules doing touch-and-goes at the airport, so I got a few shots of it. They are pretty freakin' cool.
Here's a video of a touch n go:
I wandered around the local hangars and came upon some crop spraying aircraft. They were pretty interesting to look at, and I took a few pics. Some of them had old radial engines and some had new turbine engines. The largest one was a monster - it holds 6,000lbs of pesticide (or flame retardant spray when it doubles as a fire-fighting airplane) and it's gross takeoff weight.
Here's a video of a hangar tour I did, followed by some pics.
This beast is the one that has a heavier gross weight than our jets. It'll take off at 16,000 lbs and we are only good to 14,500. I spoke to the owner and he said they paid 1.1 million bucks for it.
I climbed up and took a look at the instrument panel. I wouldn't want to fly this puppy in IFR weather :) The big display in the middle and the panel on the right side are GPS units that allow the pilot to set up a track across crop fields and then fly a very precise pattern so as to spray all the crops without missing any and without spraying the same crops twice. In practise the pilot sets up the coordinates of the field, and then the GPS display has a series of lights that illuminate laterally, telling the pilot to slide left or right along the field, should they start to drift.
This is a crop sprayer biplane. I had no idea.
This airport is a bit chilly, around -5 celsius right now. And piston engines are cranky in the cold, so this airplane has a preheater going, pushing warm air through the engine shroud for an hour or two before they light it up to go flying.
More crop duster airplanes. Ugly, but cool. Like Keith Richards, but with less heroin, and better mileage.
More to come as the day isn't over.