Tag Archives: airplanes

Adventures in Tucson, Arizona

hunter bmx park 3We stayed in Tucson for 10 days and it was full of fun and adventure. Yet another stop where we experienced so much more than what you can find on paper…

The first part of our adventure was choosing to stay at the Voyager RV Park. It is a massive (4000 people) adult only community that is geared towards active retirees. We were wooed by the amazing number of facilities and activities and they swore that Hunter was welcomed. Having stayed with Tim’s parents in Florida at an “RV Park”, we were in for quite the surprise here – everyone was incredibly friendly and very very active, physically and socially. I did water aerobics in the pool in the morning (a good level for my side that is still in rehab), the boys spent some time with the wood carving club, Hunter and I played water volleyball most afternoons and we played tennis in the afternoon or evening each night.

We explored the local National Park – Saguaro National Park and learned a great deal about desert plants and animals.

We stopped on the way back home at Ben’s Bikes, learned about the local trails and got invited to check out the BMX track that night – another first for Hunter and so much fun!

We explored the Pima Air and Space Museum and the boneyard – airplanes as far as the eye can see…

All around – a great stop. Tucson seems like a little big city – lots of amenities but still easy to get around in and a very human feel to everything. It also helps that the weather was fabulous!!! Sunny and warm each day.

Patriots Point Museum – It’s a naval candy store!

USS laffey 2Patriots Point Museum is located right in the middle of the Charleston harbour. It comprises the USS Yorktown (Aircraft Carrier), the USS Laffey (Destroyer), the USS Clamagore (Submarine) as well as a Medal of Honour Museum, Vietnam Support Base exhibit and Cold War Memorial. Talk about a full days exploration!

We unfortunately only had 2.5 hours so it was a bit of a speedy tour. Having visited the USS Midway (Aircraft carrier) in San Diego a few times, we decided to start with the boats we’d never explored before – the destroyer and the submarine.

They were both really interesting to walk through. The USS Laffey (Destroyer) was built in 1944, in time to support the D-day landings and decommissioned in 1975 after a very full career. TheUSS  Clamagore (Submarine) was built in 1945 and decommissioned in 1975, having served through the Cold War era.

The biggest learnings were around the submarine – they are really tight spaces (width & height) and people slept where they worked. This meant that if you were a weapons tech, you slept in the weapons room. That’s a little too close for comfort for me. Tim and Hunter thought it was really cool and spent quite a bit of time on the Sub. I’m not a big fan of small, confined spaces so my tour through was fairly quick.

The USS Yorktown is only slightly smaller than the USS Midway in San Diego, was built in 1943 and decommissioned in 1970. It is staffed by an amazing group of volunteers that are happy to tell you all about the ship and answer any and all questions that you have. As we were running short on time, we focused our exploration here on the flight deck. Isn’t that just nirvana – having military airplanes ON a military ship!

Comox, B.C.

Hunter comox jet

In between our biking and the rainstorms, we managed to fit in a few side adventures in Comox.

Hunter is all about machines, working vehicles and the various branches of the military. Over the last month we have spent alot of time in the car pointing out and discussing police cars, logging equipment, every construction vehicle imaginable, municipal vehicles, helicopters, bucket trucks etc. etc. etc.

hunter SAR helicopter

Last year when we flew into Comox for our fall Tofino visit, Hunter quickly spotted all of the military planes that go along with CFB Comox. We learned they had a museum and snuck in a quick trip before we headed home. This was the top thing on his list when he learned we were coming back to Comox so we had to fit it in. Luckily the rain slowed down (as parts are outside) and we found a 2 hour window to venture off to the Comox Air Force Museum.

hunter hercules

I think he could have stayed all day! We definitely recommend this for families that have military enthusiasts – you pay by donation and it is run by retirees who are full of information and have all day to chat.

hunter comox airforce museum

 

We camped at the Cape Lazo Campground and it was a great find. It was remodelled last winter and their new amenities are amazing – the washrooms are impeccably clean, with marble like tile throughout (showers, countertops) and the laundry is great. Internet is free and strong and there is a large grassy area and kids play set that is great for the under 10 crowd.