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Thread: C130 too close and no radio contact

  1. #41
    JimParker256's Avatar
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    Years ago, I was flying an Army OH-58A through one of the MOAs around Edwards AFB. The controlling agency for the MOA contacted us, and said there were some fast-movers launching, and asked if we would be OK with them attempting to do an "intercept" on us, for training purposes. I replied that it would be fine, and asked if they wanted me to make it easy for them, or give them a challenge... Without skipping a beat (but with laughter in the background), they replied "give 'em a workout, if you can."

    So we dropped down to extreme low-level (unpopulated desert area) and began operating in our usual tactical mode – flying "nap of the earth" (as low as terrain and obstacles permit). That also meant that we slowed way down, as we began picking our way through the lowest part of the valleys, keeping everything except the main rotor below the level of the mesquite and hilltops.

    Pretty soon, we saw (and heard!) a couple of fast-movers (I can't remember the type, but given the era, probably F-15s) go roaring up the valley, about a mile away from our track... They were clearly trying to find us along our last radar track. We found a night tight confined area with terrain on three sides, and ducked into it to see if they had spotted us. Pretty soon, they came roaring back down the valley, this time a little slower, like they realized they must have overflown us, and were now looking a lot harder.

    As soon as they were well beyond us, we hightailed it for the top rim of the valley, following gulleys, washes, and anything that would mask us from them and provide terrain cover from their onboard radar. Just below the top of the ridgeline, we found a promontory we could mask behind, while still seeing them approach. Pretty soon the two jets came flying by, this time MUCH slower, well below us in the valley, and clearly befuddled. About that time, I got a call from the controller, asking if we were still in the area, and if we'd seen the interceptors. I told them I was looking right at them. Then one of the jet jockeys came on the radio, saying we were doing a good job of hiding from them...

    I laughed, and asked if they wanted to know the tactics we were using. After all, the whole point of the exercise is that "steel sharpens steel" and to learn from each other, right? And I said we didn't get that many chances to play "air-to-air" with the Air Force guys...

    Unusually for fighter jocks, they said "Yes," so we explained (without telling them exactly where we were) what we'd been doing. Pretty soon, they came over again, and this time they spotted us, and began to maneuver against us. For the next 20 minutes or so, they would try to maneuver such that they could dive on us with guns/missiles, and we would hop to the opposite side of the ridgeline (where they could no longer line up on us) or fly directly towards them (thus steepening their dive angle until they had to break off). Sometimes we would do both – jump over the ridge, then fly along the ridgeline towards them, forcing #2 to radically alter their attack sequence.

    Now I realize that (in a real-world combat situation) they heat-seeking missiles likely could have made short work of us – if they could have gotten a lock-on. That was the point of forcing them to steepen the dive angle every time they made a run at us... They didn't have enough time to find us again, then initiate the dive and get stabilized for the "lock"... Had the fighters gone to altitude and dived on us, they could easily have locked on, but that would have also potentially made them vulnerable to AA fire. They could also have split up slightly, one on each side of the ridgeline, but "leaving your wingman" is apparently not just a bad thing in movies like "Top Gun" – it's a real thing...

    Anyway, we had some fun, got some good training in, and helped our fellow service-members improve their tactics against helicopters. And it certainly broke up the monotony of a somewhat lengthy cross-country flight across some boring desert terrain... Good times!
    Jim Parker
    2007 Rans S-6ES
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  2. #42

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    Find out where they’re based, google to find out who is the base commander, and drop an email. Watch behavior change.


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  3. #43

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    C17 and C130 are probably monitoring 121.5......yell at them on that!

  4. #44
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    Hogs would have found you!!


    Quote Originally Posted by JimParker256 View Post
    Years ago, I was flying an Army OH-58A through one of the MOAs around Edwards AFB. The controlling agency for the MOA contacted us, and said there were some fast-movers launching, and asked if we would be OK with them attempting to do an "intercept" on us, for training purposes. I replied that it would be fine, and asked if they wanted me to make it easy for them, or give them a challenge... Without skipping a beat (but with laughter in the background), they replied "give 'em a workout, if you can."

    So we dropped down to extreme low-level (unpopulated desert area) and began operating in our usual tactical mode – flying "nap of the earth" (as low as terrain and obstacles permit). That also meant that we slowed way down, as we began picking our way through the lowest part of the valleys, keeping everything except the main rotor below the level of the mesquite and hilltops.

    Pretty soon, we saw (and heard!) a couple of fast-movers (I can't remember the type, but given the era, probably F-15s) go roaring up the valley, about a mile away from our track... They were clearly trying to find us along our last radar track. We found a night tight confined area with terrain on three sides, and ducked into it to see if they had spotted us. Pretty soon, they came roaring back down the valley, this time a little slower, like they realized they must have overflown us, and were now looking a lot harder.

    As soon as they were well beyond us, we hightailed it for the top rim of the valley, following gulleys, washes, and anything that would mask us from them and provide terrain cover from their onboard radar. Just below the top of the ridgeline, we found a promontory we could mask behind, while still seeing them approach. Pretty soon the two jets came flying by, this time MUCH slower, well below us in the valley, and clearly befuddled. About that time, I got a call from the controller, asking if we were still in the area, and if we'd seen the interceptors. I told them I was looking right at them. Then one of the jet jockeys came on the radio, saying we were doing a good job of hiding from them...

    I laughed, and asked if they wanted to know the tactics we were using. After all, the whole point of the exercise is that "steel sharpens steel" and to learn from each other, right? And I said we didn't get that many chances to play "air-to-air" with the Air Force guys...

    Unusually for fighter jocks, they said "Yes," so we explained (without telling them exactly where we were) what we'd been doing. Pretty soon, they came over again, and this time they spotted us, and began to maneuver against us. For the next 20 minutes or so, they would try to maneuver such that they could dive on us with guns/missiles, and we would hop to the opposite side of the ridgeline (where they could no longer line up on us) or fly directly towards them (thus steepening their dive angle until they had to break off). Sometimes we would do both – jump over the ridge, then fly along the ridgeline towards them, forcing #2 to radically alter their attack sequence.

    Now I realize that (in a real-world combat situation) they heat-seeking missiles likely could have made short work of us – if they could have gotten a lock-on. That was the point of forcing them to steepen the dive angle every time they made a run at us... They didn't have enough time to find us again, then initiate the dive and get stabilized for the "lock"... Had the fighters gone to altitude and dived on us, they could easily have locked on, but that would have also potentially made them vulnerable to AA fire. They could also have split up slightly, one on each side of the ridgeline, but "leaving your wingman" is apparently not just a bad thing in movies like "Top Gun" – it's a real thing...

    Anyway, we had some fun, got some good training in, and helped our fellow service-members improve their tactics against helicopters. And it certainly broke up the monotony of a somewhat lengthy cross-country flight across some boring desert terrain... Good times!
    "Put out my hand and touched the face of God!"

  6. #46
    Farmboy's Avatar
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    C130 too close and no radio contact

    Meanwhile over Plattsburgh, Beta has been testing their vtol prototype a lot....

    Note : toprotors removed on this photo for this phase of flight testing.
    (https://www.beta.team)
    Click image for larger version. 

Name:	IMG_2939.JPG 
Views:	136 
Size:	361.3 KB 
ID:	53606


    Transmitted from my FlightPhone on fingers...
    Last edited by Farmboy; 01-14-2021 at 08:56 PM.

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  8. #48
    skywagon8a's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Farmboy View Post
    Meanwhile over Plattsburgh, Beta has been testing their vtol prototype a lot....

    Note : toprotors removed on this photo for this phase of flight testing.
    (https://www.beta.team)
    Click image for larger version. 

Name:	IMG_2939.JPG 
Views:	136 
Size:	361.3 KB 
ID:	53606
    What's with painting the "N" number with an 8 instead of a 0?
    N258UT belongs to a Falcon 900.
    https://registry.faa.gov/AircraftInq...umberTxt=258ut
    N1PA

  9. #49

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    N250UT.... they put a slash through the zero.....

  10. #50
    skywagon8a's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by mam90 View Post
    N250UT.... they put a slash through the zero.....
    Which makes it an 8.
    N1PA
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  11. #51
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    I had flown into Tieton state airstrip at the east end of Rimrock Lake, east of Yakima WA,
    & was walking around with some friends when we thought we heard some vehicle traffic coming on the adjacent road.
    All of a sudden a pair of Navy EA6B Prowlers came blasting through the valley from west to east--
    pretty much right over the strip & at pattern altitude or below.
    We were really glad we were on the ground, not in the air when they came through.
    I've seen several pics of them going through there, now the EA6's are phased out it's EF18 Growlers.
    FWIW Tieton is where CubCrafters takes a lot of their promo pics.
    it's about 5 miles north of a VFR MTR so I guess the jet traffic is legit,
    but it's kinda scary.
    Cessna Skywagon-- accept no substitute!
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  12. #52

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    Vfr charts do not accurately reflect the mtrs in most cases because the routes are anywhere from 2-5 miles wide from either side of the line depicted. Essentially they are corridors to allow for movement within the terrain


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  13. #53

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    Years ago I flew into Tieton State to work on some equipment. Climbing out over the lake in my old C170, two EA6s flew right over my head east to west at what felt way too close.
    It was pretty cool, I hope they saw me.

  14. #54
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    During a visit to my relatives, I rented a 172 in Glendale, AZ, just east of Luke AFB about 15 years ago. While climbing out on the way to Flagstaff that morning with strobes and transponder blazing away, and still well inside the GEU Class D, I had a flight of two F-16s in loose wingtip in a steep bank cross so close in front of me that I could hear them quite clearly; they were LOUD. I was also able to notice that the pilot of the second ship was sporting a blond pony-tail, I'd say they were closer than 300', same altitude.

    Even though I am aware that those chosen to fly such aircraft have been selected in part because they have superior vision and that the tower at GEU and app/dep at Luke have excellent radar, that's too damn close.

    It was awesome.
    Quidquid Latine dictum sit, altum videtur
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  15. #55

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    Flying a G2 into Cairo shortly before hostilities broke out in the first gulf war, approach control advised us we had two fast movers at our 10 o’clock moving left to right. After a few seconds we advised we had them in sight and were a little surprised when the controller replied “roger, can you tell us what type they are?” Was kind of hoping they’d know.....

  16. #56
    mvivion's Avatar
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    This stuff isn’t exclusive to military. I had a C-185 fly literally right past my nose, CLOSE, inside the Fairbanks Delta airspace. Asked Tower who that was, and they relied: “Who was?”. They didn’t see him on radar till he turned. Was my first exposure to flying tangential to Doppler radar.

    MTV
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  17. #57
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    Quote Originally Posted by Carey Gray View Post
    Years ago I flew into Tieton State to work on some equipment. Climbing out over the lake in my old C170, two EA6s flew right over my head east to west at what felt way too close.
    It was pretty cool, I hope they saw me.
    My wife was on Little Bald Mountain Lookout off Chinook pass on the Naches Ranger District in the early 1970s. The lookout sat on the edge of a cliff. E6s would fly by at eye level and give a wave (salute). She couldn't hear them coming. The flag was always flying at the lookout so I think the Pilots liked flying by it.

    Here's a cockpit view from an F18. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=N4-VHMkHEUQ
    Anyhow, here's the spots I could identify in the video. Washington people may recognize them too. 0:20 Rimrock lake; 0:45 starting up Indian Cr; 1:31 Blankenship meadow; 1:55 starting down Deep Cr; 2:18 Bumping Lake; 6:55 Keechelus lake off the left wing; 7:21 kachess Lake.

    Rimrock to Bumping lake, 15 miles, 1 min 33 seconds = 580 miles per hour. Probably faster with all the turning.
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  18. #58

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    Very cool video.

  19. #59
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    Quote Originally Posted by moneyburner View Post
    During a visit to my relatives, I rented a 172 in Glendale, AZ, just east of Luke AFB about 15 years ago. While climbing out on the way to Flagstaff that morning with strobes and transponder blazing away, and still well inside the GEU Class D, I had a flight of two F-16s in loose wingtip in a steep bank cross so close in front of me that I could hear them quite clearly; they were LOUD. I was also able to notice that the pilot of the second ship was sporting a blond pony-tail, I'd say they were closer than 300', same altitude.

    Even though I am aware that those chosen to fly such aircraft have been selected in part because they have superior vision and that the tower at GEU and app/dep at Luke have excellent radar, that's too damn close.

    It was awesome.
    Now I feel like telling my story. 1980--my 2nd solo cross country as a student pilot. I went from Bozeman to Great Falls. Great Falls had a TRSA, which was big and mysterious to me.

    I contacted Approach and got vectors and assigned altitude. So I'm bumping along in my Tomahawk when Approach suddenly tells me to turn right 90 degrees and descend immediately. OK...Then Approach advises traffic at 3:00 approaching overhead, "please advise when in sight."

    Well, I heard them first. Two F 106 Delta Darts from the Montana Air National Guard directly overhead--LOUD and fast--maybe 100 feet above. I told Approach I had them in earshot....

    When I landed I asked an instructor at the FBO about that. He said, "those guys don't talk to anyone until they want to land. They like to wake up students, though."

    Which left me wondering what good a TRSA was.
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    I was in a Huey in the fall of 97 going nap of the earth “low enough that when we banked, the wake turbulence kicked up water spray” and the pic was a Vietnam combat pilot, up the big Su when a black cub on floats and one of those fancy red beavers had taken off from one of the lakes in the area and never announced. We were calling on ctaf for the area. It was very interesting looking out the side door at a full view of the river...so it really goes both ways

  21. #61
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    I flew C-130s for 20 years on active duty before retiring three years ago. Four of those years were in Alaska, based at Elmendorf. I did a lot of low level flying in those years, day and night. We typically operated as low as 300 AGL and as fast as 250 knots in support of legitimate training requirements that culminated in an airdrop somewhere or a landing at some airfield. Those drop zones are sometimes in a restricted area, or if not they are sometimes depicted on the sectional. At night, we flew higher and used NVGs which meant that any civilian traffic stood out clearly. Night is probably not where the problem is.

    I can only speak for the units I flew in, but we diligently tried to avoid civilian airfields, high-traffic areas, etc. We also tried to make position reports on published CTAF frequencies when we could figure out which frequency is in use. Most military pilots are not active GA pilots and not familiar with "localisms" like might exist in certain high-traffic GA areas like the Knik river valley. We never did impromptu low-level flying. Our routes were always planned and briefed in detail. No "cowboy ops." Also, every C-130 I ever flew had TCAS, and we always used it. If you have a transponder, turn it on. Since I've been out three years, I have no idea how they're doing with ADS-B.

    We were also responsive to complaints. Every base I flew from had a safety office, and every safety office had a MACA program (mid-air collision avoidance, in the jargon of the Air Force). Often, the MACA guy would look for opportunities to meet local pilots but just didn't know where to start. If you have a complaint or just want to express your opinion, then by all means call the Wing Safety Office and ask to speak to the MACA guy. That's sort of the "soft" approach. If you're really upset, ask to file a noise complaint or a Hazardous Air Traffic Report. I suppose the FSDO (maybe via the FAAST Team?) could help you get in contact with the right folks on the base if you have no luck with the safety office or can't get through to the flying squadron.

    Finally, when I'm out in the Cessna these days I come across plenty of non-military pilots who aren't using CTAF or are using grossly improper procedures. Last time I flew, a Carbon Cub flew a full pattern, landed on the grass next to the runway and then crossed right in front of me with no radio calls despite me being on the freq with them for the past five minutes. Thankfully I saw the ADS-B reply before I entered the pattern so I was looking. But my point is that we need to police ourselves too, in addition to opening the communication with our local military aviators and other airspace users.
    Last edited by slowmover; 03-19-2021 at 09:24 PM.
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  22. #62
    mvivion's Avatar
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    Yes, please if you have a near miss or close encounter with a military aircraft, contact the nearest command, and POLITELY talk to them about it.
    Years ago, I was circling a wolf northwest of Fairbanks at about 600 or 700 feet or so AGL. A B-52 went UNDER me. Next day, I called Eielson AFB. They didn't have any BUFFS, but I called their wing safety folks. They explained that wasn't one of theirs, but they'd call around and see what they could find out.

    This was not in a MOA and not on an MTR. Couple days later, they called me back and said it was a B-52 out of South Dakota, doing a simulated threat ingress from the north.

    He was perfectly legal, and they probably knew I was there, but that was a little too close, which I pointed out to the folks at Eielson. They allowed as how they'd pass that along.

    So, if they're coming through airport traffic patterns and not on CTAF, call the nearest base and let them know. It may just be ignorance, or it may be a hot dog. Either way, they take this stuff seriously.

    MTV

  23. #63
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    If you’re as cute as either of these two ladies, it will make the front page of the local paper.

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  24. #64
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    Quote Originally Posted by slowmover View Post
    I flew C-130s for 20 years on active duty before retiring three years ago. Four of those years were in Alaska, based at Elmendorf. I did a lot of low level flying in those years, day and night. We typically operated as low as 300 AGL and as fast as 250 knots in support of legitimate training requirements that culminated in an airdrop somewhere or a landing at some airfield. Those drop zones are sometimes in a restricted area, or if not they are sometimes depicted on the sectional. At night, we flew higher and used NVGs which meant that any civilian traffic stood out clearly. Night is probably not where the problem is.

    I can only speak for the units I flew in, but we diligently tried to avoid civilian airfields, high-traffic areas, etc. We also tried to make position reports on published CTAF frequencies when we could figure out which frequency is in use. Most military pilots are not active GA pilots and not familiar with "localisms" like might exist in certain high-traffic GA areas like the Knik river valley. We never did impromptu low-level flying. Our routes were always planned and briefed in detail. No "cowboy ops." Also, every C-130 I ever flew had TCAS, and we always used it. If you have a transponder, turn it on. Since I've been out three years, I have no idea how they're doing with ADS-B.

    We were also responsive to complaints. Every base I flew from had a safety office, and every safety office had a MACA program (mid-air collision avoidance, in the jargon of the Air Force). Often, the MACA guy would look for opportunities to meet local pilots but just didn't know where to start. If you have a complaint or just want to express your opinion, then by all means call the Wing Safety Office and ask to speak to the MACA guy. That's sort of the "soft" approach. If you're really upset, ask to file a noise complaint or a Hazardous Air Traffic Report. I suppose the FSDO (maybe via the FAAST Team?) could help you get in contact with the right folks on the base if you have no luck with the safety office or can't get through to the flying squadron.

    Finally, when I'm out in the Cessna these days I come across plenty of non-military pilots who aren't using CTAF or are using grossly improper procedures. Last time I flew, a Carbon Cub flew a full pattern, landed on the grass next to the runway and then crossed right in front of me with no radio calls despite me being on the freq with them for the past five minutes.
    Was it blue?
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  25. #65
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    I attended a MACA (midwest area colision avoidance) conference at Whiteman Airforce Base (flew my super cub in!) in 2000. It was really great, especially since I won the drawing to fly the B2 Bomber simulator

    sj
    "Often Mistaken, but Never in Doubt"
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  26. #66
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    Doing a crane job on a cell tower a few years ago, I was driving up the farm road to the site when I saw the landowner walking up to where he had parked his tractor the night before. I picked him up and more or less immediately mentioned how I flew a small plane and the rolling terrain of his place was real interesting and would it be OK if I came and played sometime on it when the hay was down? No problem was his response. I must be a good salesman as I have yet to be turned down on a request like this. I did so, of course, lots of hillside LZ's and on the way to other places, and would always fly over the house and waggle my wings.

    Then a year or so later he bought some solar panels I was peddling at the time, and I flew in with them as an external load. Only then did we get to talking about what he did before he took over the family ranch: 30 some years in the Air Force I believe he said, as a covert ops forward air controller! He said a few months after he got set up at the ranch, one of his old crew made a hell of a low level fly over as a final send off to him. I found it interesting that it took him that long to mention what he used to do, that usually means he really did it.
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