1/22/11

Greetings from a relatively warm and sunny day in Oregon…

As planned we headed over to the Evergreen Aviation and Space Museum.  The museum is in McMinnville, OR  – 45 miles west of Portland.  The trip took us about 90 minutes will a trip to McDonald’s for breakfast and gas station for diesel.  While John was fueling, another guy with a diesel truck asked him if the Jeep was diesel and how he was getting along with it.  They carried on a 10 minute conversation while filling their tanks…  John had a ‘diesel buddy’ 🙂

We picked a great day for the trip – had clear sunny skies with temps in the 50’s.  Still a chill in the air, but was able to just wear hoodie with no coat.  The museum was very clean and well maintained.  The building are 10 years old, but still look quite new.  They had a collection of many amazing and rare aircraft like a SR-71 Blackbird, the Spruce Goose, B-17 Flying Fortress and many more.  The base admission price does not include going into the cockpit of the Spruce Goose, so John paid more money to get us a guided tour that included a photograph of us sitting in it.  John got to sit in the seat Howard Hughes was in while flying it.

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Sitting in the cockpit

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Outside view of cockpit

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View of plane from back - so large difficult to get in single photo

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Pic of scale model showing Spruce Goose being built. Model was used in the movie "The Aviator"

We also paid to have a tour of the B-17 Flying Fortress.  It was a heavily armed plane with 8 machine guns and a bomb bay.  It had a gun turret on the bottom where a small guy would operate a machine gun out of it.  It would be absolutely nuts to be down there.

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Bottom mounted gun turret

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Outside view of B-17

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Our tour guide sitting at radio station in B-17

After spending 90 minutes checking out all of the vintage planes, we headed over the Space building.  They had an impressive of artifacts from the US and Soviet space programs.  Don’t think I’ve seen so much information on the Soviet space program before – they had some of their space suites and various vehicles.  They also had a full Trident missile on display, complete with the mission control room for it.

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Top of Trident Missle

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Looking up at it

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Control room for Trident - used in the 1980's

We spent 90 minutes checking out all of the displays in the Space museum.  This was one of the neatest museums we have been to – it ranks right up there with the EAA Museum in Oshkosh – and probably exceeds it.  We took lots more picture from our day – you can check them out in the Picasa Web Album.

On the way back to Portland we stopped at the Ham Radio Outlet store.  We really did not need any new ham equipment or accoutrement (learned that word from the Winnegago Man).  We browsed for 10 minutes and left.  I googled them and found a video of the HRO’s Chili Dog day in 2009:

This week things are going full blast in Quartzsite, AZ for their annual rock and RV shows.  He’ve received phone calls from several friends letting us know that we are missed and that it’s lots of fun there.  We are planning on going next year.  You can read about it from Ron and Terry’s HitchItch blog.

Tomorrow I want to head downtown to practice ice skating and probably stop at Trader Joe’s on the way back for groceries.  Not much else going on…. time to play Warcraft for a few hours now… Just made it to level 36….

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