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KC-10 & Companion Over Chicago 9/11/04  
User currently offlineAirfinair From United States of America, joined Dec 1999, 670 posts, RR: 1
Posted (11 years 8 months 2 weeks 3 days 16 hours ago) and read 2336 times:

Can anyone confirm this info for me: At approx. 1pm, I was waiting for friends at Wrigley Field for the 1:20pm Cubs game, glanced up, and saw a contrail arcing from the south to the northwest. Nothing unusual for the skies over Chicago, and I noted the three distinct exhaust plumes coming from either a DC-10 or MD-11. What was unusual was the single contrail following closely behind it. Obviously I couldn't make out the type, but I'd guess it was an F-16 or similar joining a KC-10 to refuel. So was the Air Force or Air National Guard performing overflights of major US cities yesterday? My first thought was a flight being intercepted due to something, but as they continued to fly in formation away from Wrigley, I'm assuming it was a refueling. Any more info to confirm would be appreciated. I want to be sure I wasn't just seeing things! (I've currently got a bad case of Cubs fever.)

2 replies: All unread, jump to last
User currently offlineAa717driver From United States of America, joined Feb 2002, 1566 posts, RR: 13
Reply 1, posted (11 years 8 months 2 weeks 3 days 15 hours ago) and read 2301 times:

Usually they don't refuel at altitudes high enough to leave a contrail. Also, in the U.S. there are dedicated "tanker tracks" away from populated areas that they used for refueling. There is a big one over Lake Michigan but it doesn't extend over Chicago.TC

FL450, M.85
User currently offlineSpacepope From Vatican City, joined Dec 1999, 3389 posts, RR: 1
Reply 2, posted (11 years 8 months 2 weeks 3 days 13 hours ago) and read 2221 times:

Last month when I was digging up dinosaurs in Wyoming, I saw a KC-135 refuelling 2 B-1s (not at the same time, one was on boom, one was off of the others wingtip) in the contrail belt. Altitude for contrail formation can vary widely, but it can happen.

The last of the famous international playboys
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