We were here in Dayton because I like aviation museums. We have been to the SAC Museum in Nebraska, the Pima Museum in Tucson and I've been to Warbirds in Hamilton. The National Museum of the United States Air Force adjacent to Wright-Patterson AFB here in Dayton is one of the biggest and most comprehensive.
We woke up at 7:30 AM but neither of us slept well last night. The noise of I-70 was disturbing, plus I had been reading about James Madison and the Constitutional Convention before I nodded off and I kept thinking in the dialect of the 1780's. Wow, channeling Madison. Plus I dreamed my motorcycle got stolen. My very distinctive GL1000. Someone had already stolen my GL1100. I'm glad I woke up to find it wasn't real.
The hot breakfast here had egg something (possible an omelet) plus biscuits and gravy. Sandy had yogurt. The decaf was instant. We moved on.
The museum opened at 9:00 and we were ten minutes early. We talked to a nice couple from Fort Wayne and then the doors opened and we were away. To see the Presidential aircraft and the Experimental aircraft, you need to sign up for a bus tour because those hangers are on the Wright-Patterson Air Force Base proper. We were first in line but I didn't know that foreigners needed passports for ID. I hustled back to the truck and got them while Sandy stayed. They still let us be #1 and #2. The bus left at 9:20.
We caught (OK we were carefully accounted for) the bus and were taken back to the main Museum.
The museum was free. The tour was free. I paid for a simulator ride. This simulator was under my control and rolled 360 degrees. Often. Sandy was the Fire Control Officer. In 4 1/2 minutes of intense aerial combat, she managed to splash six bogies. Instant ace. Of course I had to call when she had a lock because she was mostly just hanging in her harness with her finger on a button.
After touring all the hangars, I could have gone around again in detail but both of us were feeling the strain of standing on concrete for four hours. We decided to leave and get some lunch, then maybe check out a few other places in town. After all, Orville and Wilbur Wright taught themselves to fly here.
We found another nearby Bob Evans and had sandwiches for lunch. Once again, the service was friendly and top notch. Then I found the Wright Brothers monument and the National Park Service Huffman Prairie Flying Field Interpretive Center. Once the Dayton bus tour cleared out, we had the place to ourselves.
Huffman Prairie was a cow pasture that Orville and Wilbur Wright were allowed to use to test fly their new heavier than air machines. I had never heard of it. I wonder if Huffy is related? We watched a movie on the trials and travails of the Wright Brothers as they figured out how to fly.
From the Interpretive Center, we followed a map they gave us to find the actual field. The map was necessary because this doesn't appear a s a POI in my GPS. You run along the outskirts of Wright-Pat AFB, past a golf course and a skeet range and down a single lane treed rode and there it is. A field. We could have taken a long walking tour in the hot sun but we looked at the field a decided that was enough.