Apr 22, 2010

Full Frontier - part 2

"Scioto #2" - 30" x 40" - oil

Day two was actually day one. Easter was exhausting but we were ready for our first real day at Elmendorf Air Force Base. We met Major Lisa Reaver, our chaperon/escort, to get started on the day. As with most trips, we started off with meeting a few of the bigwigs of the base so that we could let them know what we're looking for and if it's possible. Everyone was very excited to have us on the base. They were even more responsive once they found out exactly what we were there to do.

After the meet and greet, Lisa took us on a tour of the base and further explained the importance of this event. The 477th Fighter Group was originally the World War II era 477th Bombardment Group (Medium) manned by African American pilots and the first Reserve unit to field the F-22. Basically, this was history in the making and everyone was excited that we would be highlighting this event.

While taking the tour, Lisa told us about some great photo opportunities. She had one in mind that overlooked the base and Anchorage. With the help of Airmen Matt, the base photographer, we found the wooden tower. This tower obviously didn't get a lot of visitors as the road was covered in snow. This is where things get interesting. We parked the truck and proceeded up the snow covered road to the tower that sat on a steep snow covered hill. What's a little hike? Well after we stepped off of the road onto the hill I stepped into two feet of snow. This must be a fluke. I would step down into two feet of snow continuously for the next twenty yards while Matt, who had a thinner frame than myself, was able to walk on the top layer of the snow.

Although we gave Lisa a hard time about leading us into an "Arctic deathtrap" the view from the rickety tower was totally worth the hike. Here's a view of the tower, with our motley crew and the view from the tower with an F-22 taking off.


GumboBen said...

Gee, I really don't look too bad in a turtleneck and a corduroy blazer. Of course, it isn't the right attire for hiking in waist deep snow. It really wasn't very cold that Monday, like it was the rest of the week. I am finally getting my photos from the trip together and up on my flicker account ( and the infamous tower has been added with credits to you.

Do you remember "Money" first name. Even though it is his code name and everybody calls him by that name, I'd like to get his first name added to my blog description. Got some good ideas for a painting, but I'm gonna need more time to pull it off. C'est la vie!

Steven S. Walker said...

Thanks for the link Ben. I wish I could help you out but I have no idea what "Money's" real name is. You should ask Lisa...she'll know almost immediately.

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