Air Fest Saturday -- 7/08/17

Two days (Wed and Thurs) of strenuous hiking in hot weather netted the three of us a day of relaxing at the pool, and a bit of shopping in Grass Valley on Friday.  A first-class dinner Friday evening at Trattoria Milano --  a cozy bistro in a beautiful Grass Valley Victorian house -- capped our day.  We tentatively made a plan to attend Air Fest at Nevada County Air Park on Saturday, and so we did.  We left early Saturday morning to:  a) beat the heat, and b) get a parking space.

These guys dropping from the sky are always a cool sight. 
Their performance marks the start of the "show."

Vintage cars lined the route to the tarmac.
Above you see two "vintage" ladies in front of a Ford Mustang.
Below, Jimmy and Nannie stand next to some kind of hot rod.

Saturday's high temp was a blistering 97 degrees, and in only a short time our water bottles were empty.  One of the on-site beer reps (Ol' Republic Brewery, I think) set up a water "tank," for which we were grateful ... at least the first time we tapped into it.  The second time we filled up, the water tasted like warm plastic and we had to throw it away and buy new.  Can you spot the handwritten H20?

Above is a Coast Guard plane taking off on a demonstration flight.  Having Air Fest today was unfortunate since the devastating Wall Fire near Oroville broke out on Friday and Cal Fire was at the ready with their fire-fighting planes.  Our local paper reporting on Air Fest said, "Smoke from the Wall Fire burning in Butte County, high temperatures, and firefighting operations from the nearby Cal Fire air attack base didn't keep the show from going on or people from being entertained."  Maybe we expected more action like we've seen at other air shows, but Air Fest was a bit of a disappointment for us.  We think the wildfire was partly to blame.  (The fire is northwest of us, maybe 30 miles away.)

P-51 Mustang Bomber on a fly-by.

Radio-controlled aircraft demonstrations were the highlight of Air Fest. They were fun to watch. One of them, (lower right, above) was powered by a jet engine and when I say it flew, I mean it was a blur!  All of them rose high, twisted and turned, made contrails, zoomed to the runway, and zipped past the crowd.

They don't look too big sitting on the ground.

Obviously there are no trees shading the air park.  So, the tarmac baked in the hot sun and without shade of some kind, we'd cook ourselves. Nannie bought a $15 umbrella which saved our bacon, so to speak.  But we continued to hide from the sun when we could.  Even with thick-soled deck and athletic shoes, our feet were HOT.

We all enjoyed looking at the small planes, some of them made right there at the airport. The announcer called the homemade planes RV's, tho I don't know why.  Checking out nose and tail decorations is good sport ... most are very clever.  Above Jimmy is peering at Cloud Nine.

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This little California Solar car looks like it's broken, but it is not.  It is a three-wheeled car, with only one tire in the front.  I wonder how it drives?  Sure is cute.

Everyone vied for shade under wings, including my sister! After a couple of hours, the wind shifted and thick choking smoke from the wildfire settled over the air park. That was enough to send us home.  The three of us agreed:  Stick a fork in me, I'm done.

Yup, sorry Nannie, that you had to experience a day like this.  We're especially sorry for the people who lost their homes, or have been evacuated, firefighters who are putting their lives on the line, anyone and everyone inconvenienced.  All we three had to endure was some smoke, which wasn't a problem once we got home.  With the house closed up and the A/C turned on, each of us spent a quiet afternoon.  Down time is often good and sometimes necessary.  Let tomorrow take care of itself.


  1. Ah yes, precious down time. Very surprising, but so far the California smoke hasn't made it to Oregon. We also have a fire to the east. Pray for no smoke for our Crater Lake day!

  2. What a fine day, until the smoke came. Pretty cool planes, and I liked that we could walk around them and see 'em up close. Another stellar adventure!

  3. I so understand how you must have felt ... yeah, in those temps easy to feel like "stick a fork in me I'm done." Still, you made the most of the day, so that's a good thing.


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