A while back, I found myself in Southern California with my buddy Pete. Pete is a pilot with about 15,000 hours on multiple types but he always wants to try out something new. He was renting a Cessna 172 for the day and getting checked out at a couple of interesting fields – Catalina Island and Big Bear. I was along for the ride.
He asked if there was anything I wanted to do while we were out and I wanted to take a look at Victorville. Victorville is the old George AFB and is now a place where a lot of airliners come for storage and often to be broken for spares. I had seen a few pictures of the place and wanted to see what was there to be seen. Pete had an added interest as there were some British Airways 747s parked up there – the type he currently flies for his day job!
I had been in the back for the first two legs of our trip a we had an instructor along checking Pete out. For this leg, I took the right seat to be well positioned for the photos and also to get a bit of time in myself. I had no idea how enthusiastic Victorville would be about passing light aircraft coming to take a look. However, when we called up the tower, they were very happy for us to make a pass. When we told them what we wanted, they even allowed us to break off from a low approach and turn north to pass the collection of stored airliners.
There was quite a selection of aircraft on the ground. Some of them were obviously temporary residents but a few looked like they were only going to be leaving in bits some day. Rather sad but it happens to us all eventually. Anyway, a fun distraction on our route (a great trip as a whole by the way but maybe I will save that for another time) and some interesting things to see.