Flights of the F117 "post retirement" have been documented a few times on video. The question is do they fly out of Groom Lake or the Tonopah Test
Range. The plane was observed flying on Sept 29th, though not by me. [Hard to believe, but I walked up Brainwash Butte to find it occupied by three
guys with scanners and binoculars.] The plane had been flying before I arrived. However, on Sept 30th, it was flying again. I only had the telescope,
so there are no photos of the plane in the air. But I watched it fly over the TTR with binoculars.
Now technically the F117 could also be based at Groom as well. All these photos do is show there are active F117s at the TTR. I use the plural since
the plane that flew on the 29th was in a different barn than the one flew on the 30th.
These photos have extreme thermal distortion. The plane was flying around 11AM.
With all the military budget cuts, perhaps unretiring them was somehow cost effective or they upgraded them in some way. Last I knew, after the crash
in Serbia it was no longer completely "invisible" on the radar.
Cool! My understanding was that to maintain the separation of operations at Groom everyone was on lock down in their hangars once a test object was
outside and until it was out of sight. To reduce too much disturbances to other projects they try to keep the number of active projects at the Base
low. This could make sense with the f117s if there are only a couple flying but since they've been papped at TTR I guess they're all flying out of
edit on 6/10/14 by gfad because: (no reason given)
I was near EAFB a year or so ago and I swear I saw a YF-23 flying (with a couple of F-16 escorts). It did a seriously odd angle maneuver after take
off. Thrust vectoring?
Why would that one even be flying? I know it was a capable platform, but surely the day has passed for it.
Unless I was mistaken and it was just something that looked a lot like it...
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