U.S. heavy-lift transport aircraft makes unique landing at Yakima Training Center

A C-17 Globemaster III heavy-lift transport aircraft assigned to McChord Field made a unique landing at the Yakima Training Center.

For the first time, 446th Airlift Wing Reserve Citizen Airmen landed at the newly restored Selah airstrip at the Yakima Training Center and accomplished readiness training May 1.

According to a news release put out by U.S. Air Forces, while engaged in an exercise at the training center, Army officials called upon two C-17 Globemaster III units to transport four UH-60 Black Hawk helicopters. The helicopters were needed as part of the Joint Warfighting Assessment 19, a joint multinational military exercise conducted at YTC April 8 to May 11.

Through joint collaborations between I Corps units at Joint Base Lewis-McChord, the 446th Airlift Wing and the 62nd Airlift Wing, Airmen and Soldiers worked side-by-side to deliver the Black Hawks.

“This was the first time that an aircrew from 446th Airlift Wing had been to this landing zone,” said Capt. Jason Taylor, 313th Airlift Squadron assistant director of operations. “It’s only 90 feet wide and barely long enough for us to land with this type of cargo loaded on the aircraft. Add to the fact that it was in a simulated live-fire zone – and a busy airspace of helicopters and unmanned aerial vehicles – it took a lot of effort to coordinate all the logistics for a mission like this.”

Landing somewhere new can be very exciting, Taylor said. He said some of the hills in the area extend upward to 5,000 feet. But aircrews were flying at about 3,200 feet when they entered the training range prior to landing.

“In a contested environment, the hills would have shielded us from ground-based radars placed opposite of those hills just as we would plan for in real-world scenarios,” Taylor said. “The Yakima Training Center Range is also …read more

Read more here:: Defence Blog (Air)

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