Thursday, April 13, 2006

Bouncing planes...

Several of you referred back to a sentence in my last post about the bouncing planes. I realized then, that I have to stop and remember that not all of you have lived next to a Military airfield, nor do you have any idea how it impacts the area around it.

I looked up Coupeville OLF in google Images, and there was a really cool website about abandoned and forgotten airfields in Washington State. It has the complete history of these airfields. So below is an excerpt from that...


The Navy reactivated the facility
to accommodate the increased training & operational demands of the Vietnam War
(when A-6 Intruder flight training at NAS Whidbey Island was ramping up).

Beginning at that time, the Navy used the landing strip for "field carrier landing practice",
a training exercise designed to simulate landing on an aircraft carrier at sea.
The exercise involves groups of up to five aircraft flying in patterns to practice touch-and-go landings.
Each aircraft in turn approaches the runway & touches down,
but then takes off again without coming to a stop.
The aircraft remains in the traffic pattern & returns for another landing.
Each aircraft makes multiple touch-and-go landings (bouncing) before stopping to refuel.

Since 1967, the Navy has continuously used OLF Coupeville for field carrier landing practice,
but the amount of that use has varied.
From 1967-71, the Navy used the landing strip extensively,
conducting as many as flight 39,246 operations in a single year.

After the Vietnam War ended, the Navy's use of OLF Coupeville declined, but did not cease.

I live just over the trees in the picture...It gets really loud around here when they bounce. I can see the pilots when they come down the street. Yes, you read right. They line up down Dewey Dr, then get as low as they can, go over the trees and then touch down. I knew they were there when I bought the house, so I have no room to complain at all, but they do get irritating. Especially during the summer when it stays light so late. The airfield has two carrier decks simulated on the field, complete with lights and stripes. So to practice Night landings on a carrier, they wait until dark which in our case may be as late as 10:00 PM then they go until the Law says NOPE which is 1:00 AM. You get used to them and you can sleep through the normal rhythm of them, but when they stop, or the pattern breaks, you wake up.

So now, Leigh and Carla and all you others...You KNOW!

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