Savannah – Earlier in the week I was given a heads up that F-16s from Oklahoma were visiting Savannah, but I didn’t have a chance to listen on the radio for them until I got back to Savannah this morning. They are indeed from the 138th Fighter Wing, OK ANG and were flying today as TRIBE and BRAVE flights from the Savannah Combat Readiness Training Center to conduct air combat training in the offshore special use areas with F-15s from the 125th Fighter Wing at Jacksonville, FL. They were using the CRTC’s Ops frequency of 237.000 for Ops communications and CRTC frequencies 293.300 and 363.900 for air-to-air. Offshore, they were using 293.600 and 316.300 for training ops with the FL ANG F-15s. It sounds like they may be leaving to go back to Oklahoma over the weekend; SOONR 84, a 137th ARW, OK ANG KC-135 arrived at the CRTC this afternoon. I should be around the radios part of the day tomorrow and if I hear the F-16s head back west, I’ll post an update.
Additionally, some US Navy MH-60Ss from HSC-26 at NAS Norfolk have been at the Savannah CRTC today. There are at least three of them at the CRTC and they’ve been using the callsign CHARGER as well as NAVY HW 6# with Air Traffic Control and while working at Townsend Range. They’ve also been reporting to CRTC Ops on 237.000 when they RTB. Due to their low altitude I couldn’t hear much of their activity at Townsend but it sounded like they were possibly doing some Combat Search and Rescue training. A possible air-to-air during those ops was 282.800. I’m not sure how long they’ve been here or how long they’ll be here for.
Another fun catch today was SWEDE 61, a F-35B from VMFAT-501 at MCAS Beaufort. Today was the first time I’ve heard one of the F-35s since some made the move from Eglin AFB to MCAS Beaufort a few months ago. I also got to see SWEDE 61 as it made an approach to Hunter AAF before going back to MCAS Beaufort. I searched for communications with VMFAT-501 Base as SWEDE 61 went back to Beaufort but I never heard anything. The search for squadron frequencies will continue… It’s not all that good of a photo considering the distance at which I took it from, but here is SWEDE 61 as it flew past the neighborhood on its way to Hunter AAF. Due to the blue flash on the tail, I think it is VM 01 (Bu No 168057).