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Sunday, October 9, 2011

San Francisco Fleet Week

I like airplanes, ships and standing in long lines fun day trips and I got my fill this weekend. So I went to the 2011 San Francisco Fleet Week on Saturday. It was a lot of fun and I took a bunch of pictures, I'm going to put a few of the good ones here. The USS Carl Vinson (CVN-70) and the USS Bonhomme Richard (LHD-6) were two of the most notable ships there as well as the Blue Angles and many other aircraft. There are tons of pictures, news articles and info. about San Francisco Fleet week on line so I'm not going to put a lot of that here. If you want to know more about SF Fleet Week Google it. Because this Blog is about the things that I am doing I'll stick to what I did. BTW: I am still working on the wind tunnel that I wrote about last week but I don't have a lot of progress to write about.
To get to San Francisco we took the East Bay Ferry from Oakland to San Francisco. This is the way to go to avoid traffic and standing on BART. We left Oakland and went straight to San Francisco. On the return trip I took the picture below of a crane on the Alameda waterfront. I thought it looked neat with the moon right off the end of the crane boom.

Alameda Pier Crane
Old mechanical stuff like that looks neat and I really like the picture so I put this one first. It's rusted and looks like it's about to fall over but it appears to be in service. The Ferry leaves from the post of Oakland and I have only one interesting picture of the ship that is right next to the ferry.

Leaving Oakland
You can see the Port of Oakland cranes in the background and a little piece of Alameda island on the left. The trip to San Francisco was about 20 minutes and a lot of fun. I had never been on the Ferry before so this was a unique trip for me. To get to San Francisco by the Oakland Ferry you have to pass under the San Francisco Bay Bridge. There is a lot of traffic noise from all the cars going over the bridge, I was a bit surprised at that.

San Francisco Bay Bridge and Treasure Island
In case you don't know the Bay Bridge is really two bridges, one from Oakland to Yerba Buena Island (and the man madeTreasure Island) where the road goes through a tunnel the another bridge that crosses from the island to San Francisco. Click on the link above for more info. I have driven across that bridge many times but this was the first time to see it from the waters perspective.
We passed Alcatraz and docked in San Francisco briefly, staying on the ferry to go ahead to the second more northern San Francisco stop.
Alcatraz Island from the ferry
After passing under the bridge I shot this picture of the USS Bonhomme Richard docked.
USS Bonhomme Richard Docked in San Francisco (and some guys head)
While we were waiting for the ferry to depart and go to the next San Francisco stop there was a B2 Bomber fly by that caught me by surprise. The pictures that I took don't do it justice... that is an amazing aircraft. I have only one pic to post as this caught me by surprise but I have to say that the B2 is an amazing aircraft. I know that is a easy thing to write and the picture is pretty unspectacular but watching that 'thing' fly around is incredible.

B2 Bomber over San Francisco
After leaving the first San Francisco stop we went up closer to Fisherman's Warf and got off the ferry. There were a lot of people out watching the airshow. I have been to San Francisco many many times and this wasn't the biggest crowd that I have seen there but there were a lot of people.
San Francisco Pier 39 Fleet Week 2011
After eating lunch and crisscrossing through the crowd we found a nice spot on the beach at Aquatic Park. A very nice view and we could hear the official announcer of the airshow describe what was going on. Also some really neat and loud fly overs :-)
San Francisco Aquatic Park
The airshow was really fun and despite getting there a little after a few of the planes we watched the Blue Angles.
Blue Angles over San Francisco

Fleet Week San Francisco 2011
Very cool and a lot of fun!
The Trip back across the bay in the evening was a nice way to end the day with great views from the water and a couple more pictures.
San Francisco Bay Bridge

USS Carl Vinson and the SF Bay Bridge
USS Carl Vinson anchored in SF bay

So there you go that was the trip and the weekend in San Francisco. We took the ferry back to Oakland in the evening as the sun was setting and managed to find not only our car but our way out of Oakland and back home!!
Ship at the port of Oakland

The Port of Oakland at Night
I hope that you had as good a weekend as I did. This was a great trip and a lot of fun. I hope to do it again soon.

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