The October Second Saturday at WAAAM proved to be a day full of surprises. It all started with the weather. On the drive there, it seemed absolute that WAAAM’s perfect of no rain during Second Saturday hours would be broken. The sky looked truly ominous. Surprisingly enough, it did not rain during the activity hours, although it had shortly before.
The next surprise was hinted at while I was helping out by setting up the lunch room. We could hear a fairly large jet powered helicopter landing at the field, but assumed it was a just a quick stop and nothing particularly interesting was happening.
After setting up the lunch room I began to wander about taking photos as I always do. When I broke for lunch, the chief pilot, Ben Davidson, informed me that the TG-3, a WWII training glider would be going up for its first flight with WAAAM. This was also a surprise. I expected a Parker Pusher taxi test, but didn’t think anything else aviation related would be happening that day. Unfortunately, I jumped the gun a bit on getting over to the field for the glider flight, causing me to miss the pusher taxi test. When I got over to the field I came upon the other surprise. A Sikorsky Jayhawk was there from the Astoria Coast Guard station to give some search and rescue volunteers some training on helicopter extraction of folks in need of rescue. This provided for some great opportunities to photograph their training exercise and the weather was a nice bonus for this as the stormy skies were very evocative for that sort of image.
I finished up the day by photographing the first take-off and several landings of the TG-3. The best location for take-offs was not the same as the best for landings, thus after the first I had to make a decision which was the focus. I preferred the glider not being towed, thus I chose the landings. For these photos, nicer weather would have looked good. Yet I really like how I was able to get recognizable images of all of the various pilots in the craft. It is also interesting to watch a glider and learn that they are not nearly as quiet as one might expect.