Behind-the-Scenes at Ellington Airport

I am telling you – I have the best job EVER! My recent employment at Houston Community Newspapers has opened so many doors for me and I am very grateful for these opportunities.

Not only have I been able to cover many inspiring local events, but I have had unique opportunities to cover unique things outside of Pearland.

Mayor Annise Parker (R)

Mayor Annise Parker (R)

Most recently, I have been able to attend the unveiling of the Lone Star Flight Museum plans (and ended up sitting next to Houston Mayor Annise Parker, which was cool no matter how you feel about her), a media event with The Blue Angels and yesterday I got to ride in the cockpit of their C-130 (“Fat Albert”) and ended up next to Master Chef Season 3 winner and native Houstonian Christine Ha!

It is my utmost pleasure to be able to share some behind-the-scenes things with the readers of The Tribune – things that may not make it to print.

So, in that spirit, below are links to a couple of YouTube videos that I took with my GoPro on the C-130 yesterday. I was bummed that the sun prevented me from capturing the full view out of the cockpit windows. We were mostly flying below 3,000 feet…and if you happen to live near Ellington Airport, we probably buzzed your rooftop! Fat Albert flies at about 400mph and can keep that speed up at extremely low altitudes. At one point, we were about 250 feet above the airstrip (not landing, either)!

Take-off consisted of a brief flat acceleration period followed by a 45-degree upturn. It was close to a rocket launch! The pilot then did a nose dive, creating a zero gravity environment for a few seconds! We had moments of high-G upturns, and I was holding my video camera (they ran out of mounts on the plane) so it was quite a struggle to keep my arm up so I could keep filming! We went in for a landing after about 7 minutes, and we headed straight for the ground. At the last minute, the pilot pulled up and leveled us off to land safely. This C-130 is a HUGE plane and it’s amazing that it is so incredibly maneuverable!

I hope you enjoy the videos and I hope to see some of you out at the Wings Over Houston Airshow this weekend at Ellington Airport! For more information, visit WingsOverHouston.com.

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