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C-17 Globemaster III
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C-17 from Altus AFB at OKC Airshow America 2002
kinna' small isn't it?

In my opinion, the Boeing C-17 Globemaster III is THE transport plane of the USAF. 

Pics of the "Moose" (or Caddo for ATC)

One of my favorite C-17 pics

C-17 pics

Air Force C-17 factsheet.

An R/C C-17, The Big Grey Cloud!

The Big Grey Cloud's second address

    The C-17 is, by far, my favorite airplane.  I know it isn't as big as the Lockheed C-5 Galaxy, so it doesn't have as much 'awe' factor as the C-5 does when you talk about size and weight (not to mention the Russian/Ukranian An-124 or An-225), but the C-17 can be right over you before you hear it, instead of hearing its engines grinding 10 miles away as is the case with the C-5.  But what's not to love about a plane that can descend as fast as 20,000 feet per minute (227 MPH vertically, bet that'll make your ears pop!), can carry 169,000 pounds of cargo, 27,000 gallons (181,000 pounds) of fuel making for a maximum takeoff weight of 585,000 pounds, can takeoff and land on a 3,000 foot runway, and requires a crew of only 3 (2pilots and a loadmaster)!  It is 174 feet long, and has a wingspan of 169.8 feet, to give you a better idea of its size by looking at the pics in the link above, the winglets (up-turned parts at the wingtips) are 9.2 feet tall.  By the way, it is one of the few planes that can go in reverse uphill (max 2% grade).
     For me, flying the C-17 for the Air Force is my top career goal (besides flying for an airline or something like that afterwards).  I've been in the full-motion, swear-you-are-really-flying (if I wasn't buckled in, I would have fallen out of my seat when another person was at the controls and had a serious over-control problem) simulator at Altus AFB twice, and got to take the controls once.  That first time in the simulator and getting to "fly" it around the pattern is when I realized just how awesome this big bird is.  You can either program the autopilot to do all the work (from flying in formation to dropping your cargo), or you can put one hand on the throttle levers, the other on the stick, and look through the HUD (heads-up display) for all your necessary flight information (these last 2 items are common for fighters, not heavy transports). 
     I guess for you to truely understand what I'm talking about, you would have to get up close to one, walk around inside its cargo bay, and then climb up into the cockpit and take a good look at it as a pilot tells you about what everything does and the plane's capabilities. 
     One thing about the C-17 that I didn't know up until just a few weeks ago is something that I have been wondering about for quite a while.  What is it's callsign when talking on the radio?  I knew the C-5 is called "Jumbo" and the KC-135 is called "Gasser", but I never could quite understand what the Altus approach controllers were saying when they were talking to a C-17 (almost always the military planes talk on a UHF frequency, so I don't hear them talking, while the controller transmits on UHF and VHF at the same time).  Finally, a few weeks ago while I was in the practice area and maybe one or two other planes were talking to approach, I asked the controller about it.  He replied that they call a single C-17 "Caddo" and they call a formation flight of them "Tribe".  Finally a nagging curiosity has been put to rest.

Here are pics of when I "flew" in the C-17 simulator at Altus AFB. All the terrain that was visible on the screens didn't show up on these pics.  That sucks because it looks pretty cool.

Flying club C-17 sim trip.