Then I got it, ol’ Dusty here is making sure that every bug smasher from Mount Whitney to the Mojave knows what true speed is. He’s the fastest dude in the valley today, and he just wants everyone to know how much fun he is having in his new Hornet. And the reply, always with that same, calm, voice, with more distinct alliteration than emotion: “Dusty 52, Center, we have you at 620 on the ground.”
via The Ultimate Ground Speed Check – Tales from the Blackbird.
Many planes have come and gone but the good old SR-71 will always be my favorite. Read the whole thing and smile .
And to Daniel in the improbable event that he is reading this blog: I want my Blackbird book back you bastard!
2 thoughts on “The Ultimate Ground Speed Check – Tales from the Blackbird”
Ah the SR71 ! Main (only ?) reason I went to the Smithsonian National Air and Space Museum annex at Dulles.
Beautiful plane / rocket !
I also recall a -71 story from a base in England, the local RAF training command requested a flyby to interest new graduates to apply for their -71 program. 71 takes off and cruises to the school for the appointed date/time/location flyby, but the base is socked in with fog (lovely England). Trying to get out of the soup, the pilot slowly ratchets up the throttles, ends up screaming over the training base flightline before he knows it and has to roll 90 degrees as he yanks up to avoid hitting the tower….where all the recent graduates are standing. Missed it by a yard or two, tops. They made it back to the American base fully expecting to get royally chewed for nearly crashing, only to be met by their CO wondering what they did to merit such a glowingly enthusiastic response from the Brits (who, apparently, had several of their -71 classes filled to the brim after everyone had a chance to change skivvies). Pilot and co-pilot kinda glanced at each other and gave a VERY scaled-down, reduced-sphincter version of their story.
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