Yes, you all already know about this one, but I liked it so much that I wanted my own AAR. The inmersion you feel flying this mission it's difficult to explain. Just some advices to fly it correct: wait until is late in the night, everybody at your home but you is sleeping, dim or even better, turn off the lights and you are ready to go.
One more thing, you will need a dark room also to see the pictures and videos in this report (remember HD)
First, as always, some background, so you know what is going on. Long but very interesting reading:http://www.talkingproud.us/Military121504.html
Starting in the dark parking, not too much activity in the base at this time of the night, most people enjoy their earned sleep, not us. As I taxi I see the lights of Blind Bat (our C130 night FAC) moving on the runway and getting airborne. Soon after, Lead start rolling and I follow. I hurry to join up, the night is dark, there is a solid cloud cover and I don't want to lose sight of number one.
Once on his wing, formation is tricky, we fly inside the soup and there is not horizont to reference, it's really easy to get vertigo in these conditions and find yourself overcorrecting to keep position. Then you will fall into PIOs and see your leader dancing around your canopy, is he? is me who flies erratic? To avoid this I fly with one eye on my leader and the other on the ADI. Very subtle with the stick... http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=v7lsOSLu44o
Blind Bat takes off
Bad weather formation
There is some openings in the clouds that allows us to see our secondary navegation device
We are getting there, we descend below the clouds, I see Bat has started it's lighting work.
Leads goes first, he makes his run and I see his bombs miss the trucks column, he did not align correct, the cloud ceiling is too low to execute a proper dive. I just see some light and scarce AAA.
My turn, I line up and open the bay... and then the hell gets unleashed, holly crap!! The first plane woke them up!!http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RhfWNRxGNDY
I forget about my 250kts dive, I just deliver the bombs level and climb to get the hell out of there! No second passes today boys!
I don't think I got any targets but today is one of those days when doing this...
...is all I wanted, reward enough.
Taxi to parking, shut down the plane, shut down the computer, is late in the night, everybody sleeps, evrything is quiet, I want to go to bed.