What a week of history for us! Tuesday, May 8th and Wednesday, May 9th, we visited Brackett Field Airport in La Verne and on Friday, May 11th, we visited Lyon Air Museum at John Wayne International Airport in Santa Ana to see the “2018 Wings of Freedom Tour” that is put on by the Collings Foundation.
The tour is a collection of 4 to 5 superbly maintained WWII fighter and bomber aircraft. We were able to walk around and explore the interiors of a B-17 Flying Fortress, a B-24 Liberator, a B-25 Mitchell, a P-51 Mustang and an A-1E Skyraider (a 1955 vintage fighter). And on Friday we FLEW in the B-24 Liberator, which is the only one in the world still flying! We also toured the Lyon Air Museum, which has a fine collection of air worthy vintage WWII aircraft, historic motorcycles and cars. There are even a few WWII veterans that hang out at the museum who are more than happy to tell their stories.
The Collings Foundation flies the planes to Airports around the US for public viewing and we highly recommend that you see them if they are scheduled for an airport near you. 2018 Wings of Victory Tour Schedule
Fair warning: there’s a more video in this post than usual because the videos convey our experience better than still pictures.
Just a short two-hour drive north of Los Angeles, along Highway 14 in Kern County, leads you to Red Rock Canyon State Park. The park is located where the southern most tip of the Sierra Nevada Mountain Range converges with the El Paso Range in the Mojave Desert.
Huge cliffs and Mars-like red rock formations create an out-of-this-world atmosphere for one of the most unique natural wonders in Southern California. Red Rock has a rich mining history, diverse desert wildlife and has been used as the setting for many movies and TV shows.
My sister, Cynthia, recently came to visit us from the East Coast. I had told her about Anza Borrego State Park for several years, how beautiful it is, the metal sculptures, unique natural mountain landscapes and wildlife. Given how the east coast below zero weather had been, she was game to check it out.
Bryce Canyon National Park was the 5th and last stop during our epic 2017 eclipse trip. While there we also visited near-by Red Canyon, in the Dixie National Forest, and Kodachrome Basin State Park. All three are located in Southern Utah not very far from the Arizona border.
The major feature of the Bryce Canyon National Park is … Bryce Canyon, which despite its name, is not a canyon, but a collection of giant natural amphitheaters along the eastern side of the Paunsaugunt Plateau. I’m still going to call them canyons anyway because that’s what they look like to me. Call me a rebel.
Well, it seemed like we were on another planet. Craters of the Moon National Monument and Preserve is appropriately named, that’s for sure! The park consists of unusual terrain that features a very nice campground, volcanic cinder cones, lava tubes, 500+ caves, great ranger led hikes, examples of lava types and on-going science research. That’s me popping up out of a lava tube.
After our visits to Yellowstone and Grand Teton National Parks, we thought Craters of the Moon might be a let down, but it wasn’t!