Goodyear Blimp Airship

Goodyear Blimp Airship

Goodyear Blimp Airship

Goodyear Blimp Airship

It was a gorgeous day in Southern California and so I decided to take Estelle, our Cessna 195, out for a trip down the coastline. I had just rounded the point off of Palos Verdes down by the Port of Long beach when I hear the call over the radio, “Hawthorne tower, airship six miles South, climbing to 2,000 feet, requesting permission to transition your airspace.” That happened to only be a couple miles from where I was and I was headed back that direction. I immediately started scanning the sky, The Goodyear Blimp was not camouflaged, nor was it small, they would not be able to hide from me long. It only took a couple minutes and I had it in my sights, just where they said they were. I headed back towards Hawthorne, where Estelle is staying and tried to get a few good photos of the airship. Unfortunately the good photo op was going to have to wait because the blimp was just too far South. I flew back to Hawthorne, dropped off Estelle, picked up a Columbia 400 and quickly departed, this time heading for the Hollywood sign. The great part about hunting an airship is that they don’t move very fast. I took off from Hawthorne in the Columbia 400 about 20 minutes after arriving with Estelle, it didn’t take long to reacquire the Goodyear Blimp and this time I was able to get a better picture.
There is something very iconic about the Goodyear Blimp, they have been flying since the early 1900’s and there are currently 3 flying around the United States. I couldn’t imagine anyone not knowing what the Goodyear Blimp looked like. Seeing the Goodyear Blimp always takes me back to my childhood where I would see the airship flying circles above some sporting event that I was attending, advertising something on their cool reader boards.
The last call I heard from the Blimp before departing the area was “Santa Monica Tower, Airship (call sign) will be circling UCLA for the next 5-6 hours…


Pilot Michael
Pilot Michael