Friday, September 25, 2009


USAF Heritage Flight at CIAS 2009!

The PAST (P-51 Mustang), the PRESENT (F-16 Fighting Falcon), and the FUTURE (F-22 Raptor).

THE EMPTY CONCEIT of Canadians is that they are neutral "peacemakers" on the world stage.

Well CANADA, look above… here are the real peacemakers.


Our NOW small and vetted Canadian Air Force, works in conjunction with these guys, the USAF, who are are the real protection of Canada. And, not through any fault of the tough and proud Canadian military, itself.

Since the anemic (Liberal and Conservative, NDP, and separatist) political parties have ignored the needs of the Canadian military for so long… Canada is in NO POSITION to defend its northern border, which is PRESENTLY being internationally challenged!

CANADIANS thought the loss of the AVRO ARROW was unforgivable.

There will be no forgiveness from Canadians, for any political party here in Canada that gives up any of these northern lands. Take note.

More overt challenges are coming folks, and don't think they're not.

So, the next time, you, as a knee-jerk, mealy-mouthed, leftist-Canadian, want to criticize the Yanks… just stop.

Thank your lucky stars that our southern neighbour is the United States of America, and not the former USSR… or we'd have already been annexed, just like Poland was, right after WW II!

CANADA looked good to the former USSR, except for that giant, resting just below the 49th.

And nobody wants to wake that sleeping giant.

Well, except for the Japanese, but they've learned never to do that again.

So… I'm off my soapbox now. But just for a few minutes—


Here I am, at Toronto Island Airport (YTZ)… oops, and sorry OwenSounders, I mean Billy Bishop Island Airport!

Before me is a P-51D, one of the Mustangs from the aerial demonstration team, The Horsemen. The pilot is just starting to juice the goose!!

You know any other day of the year I'd be arrested for being this close to runway but hey, you know, this is CIAS… or what the locals simply call "the Airshow" and its all good.

The CANADIAN INTERNATIONAL AIR SHOW closes out the Canadian National Exhibition on the final three days of the "X".

And this year is no different.

And I particularly like the Mustang's backdrop (Toronto's Waterfront) in this capture—

This P-51 was built in 1944, and served with the USAAF, the Swedish Air Force, the Nicaraguan Air Force and spent most of the 80s as an air racer at Reno, Nevada.

The BLUE ANGELS come to CIAS in 2009.

Fine performance. Been a while since these guys were in TO!

I tried a new location this year to photo from… so I got faraway shots of formation bursts etc.

HOWEVER, I got fully lit shots of reformations, rogue turns, unexpected strafing etc.

(my settings were a little off with the new DSLR)

Wednesday, September 9, 2009


I AM… a star-crossed lover, no more.

I FINALLY get to see and photograph a flying GOLDEN HAWK.

The wondrous Canadian Warplane Heritage Museum, in Hamilton, has a static see-thru Golden Hawk on display, which is the other Golden Hawk all should see. I have some great shots of that one, but unfortunately, it can't fly.

I missed all of Vintage Wings of Canada's HAWK ONE'S appearances at every Ontario air show this year. And not by choice. The Hawk didn't even make it to Wings and Wheels earlier this year in TO after I told the whole city to come out!

A couple weeks ago, while on a movie set, I threw my DSLR in to a mirky lake and killed it. By fluke. And with no one around I also ran into the Bear-walker.

So without a DSLR to power my lenses, odds were workin' against me to see HAWK ONE during the 100th Anniversary Celebration of Powered Flight in Canada.

But I got a new DSLR, and finally I did photograph "the Hawk" (seen above)!

MY DAD would've seen many performances of the RCAF Golden Hawks. In fact, he had a signed 13 x 19 colour photo of them in formation… back in the day.

Not easy to come by.

I think these are the best Sabre colours ever.

REMEMBER: The GOLDEN HAWKS were Canada's first military aerobatics team, long before the Snowbirds, and were created to celebrate the (Golden) 50th Anniversary of Powered Flight (1959) in Canada. The Golden Hawks also helped celebrate the 35th Anniversary year of RCAF.

Tuesday, September 8, 2009

::::: BILLY BISHOP Gets A Second Airport!


Although BILLY BISHOP was from Owen Sound, Ontario, 200 miles northwest of Toronto, the Port Authority of Toronto has decided to rename the Toronto Island Airport… Billy Bishop Island Airport!

Billy landed there a couple of times apparently. Although, no one is really sure when.

What a minute!!

Isn't there ALREADY a Billy Bishop Airport? In Owen Sound??


But, OwenSounders, didn't you know that outside of Toronto, nothing else exists? Do you really think that Toronto city exec types know about your itsy-bitsy airport?

The mayor of Owen Sound is pi- - ed! He has threatened to come down to TO and kick ass!

Mayor, all I ask, all I ever ask… is one thing. Just let me know when you are going to said, kicking. I will pay good money to watch this.

Apparently, Toronto has no homegrown RCAF heroes to name airports after.

F/L David Ernest Hornell, VC from Mimico comes to mind, but I'm so silly.

But hey, David only died in the line of duty attacking and sinking a Nazi U-boat near Denmark, all the while his PBY Canso (Catalina) was furiously ablaze. Somehow, he landed the badly damaged amphibious aircraft, and the Canso crew was saved a day later by the Royal Navy.

David blind, and weakened from exposure, however, died a few days later.

Apparently, DAVID HORNELL VC isn't a big enough hero for Toronto City Council or the Toronto Port Authority!

You already know what my political party would do.

Statue, DAVID HORNELL VC renaming, 100 jet fighter aircraft sonic-boom flyover smashing City Hall windows etc. just to send the message home to those TCC and TPA commies.

See how HAMILTON, yes Hamilton, has honoured Toronto's DAVID HORNELL, VC:

… and by the way that is the Canadian ace BILLY BISHOP, and he was another REAL CANADIAN I might add.

Here, during World War II, Billy Bishop D.S.C., V.C. is giving the address and send-off at this British Commonwealth Air Training Plan pilot dedication!

And those men you see in this clip from Hollywood's "Captain of the Clouds" were real airmen from Great Britain, Canada, Australia, New Zealand, South America, and the United States of America. They really did receive their RCAF pilot's wings at that moment in time.

And some of them really did, never return. But they knew it was their call to join the great battle, to free the then-embattled world from Hitler, Mussolini, and Tojo. More real Canadians.

Sunday, September 6, 2009

::.:. Beware the BEAR-WALKER!

"The woods are lovely,
Dark and deep…"

Robert Frost

NOT SURE WHAT Bear-walker means in Ojibwa Indian folklore but in my survival training courses, it was noted as uncontrolled fear or anxiety, either individually, or collectively as a group, with the end result being impulsive and dangerous behaviour that would impede or extinguish your chance of survival in the great outdoors.

It's a seasoned hunter lost in the wild for only a few days whose mind has snapped and who runs away from, and not to, a Canadian Forces search and rescue helicopter. It's a firefighter who gets lost in the wild, and keeps pushing forward, going, going…trying to catch up to friends, until exhausted, at which point both thirsty and hungry, he slips. Down a small hill. And his leg, is now broken. So, now what?

And when you're in the wild… you are not at home. Which should be obvious enough, but it often isn't.

You are far from having the usual community supports.

And that's when the Bear-walker can descend on you suddenly.

And if you lose the battle with the Bear-walker… you can easily forfeit your life.

I was taking a few shots of a Great Blue Heron that was in the clearing, near-by. It took off from a rock and I followed its flight when suddenly my camera strap caught my canoe paddle handle, wrenched the camera from my hand with great force, and out of my hands it went.

I last saw my Canon DSLR fly straight away, and then immediately down into the mirky waters.


My Canon SLR that had cost me $2600, my pro lenses that cost $1300, my memory card etc., now gone!

Enter the Bear-walker.

The Bear-walker is telling me to jump in. Go after your equipment. Quick!!!!!!!!!!


Cool head prevails.

The water is mirky. Can't see a thing. Could jump in and get skewered. What about lake reeds? Could get tangled up and hopelessly trapped. Not likely any undertow. Not likely. How do I secure the canoe so that it doesn't float away? Actually I can't. If I jump in, I could capsized all the canoe's contents! And of course, there is no one else around!

Of, course.

No, no, no…jump in. Soon there won't be a trace of your camera…

(Shut-the-hell-up Bear-walker)

Did you catch that, readership?

The Bear-walker is using my $4,000 anxiety to get me to react without heeding the danger. I acknowledge he is there, and remind myself of his existence by entering into brief dialogue with him (that single shut-up I issue to quiet my mind). He is the watcher in the woods. But the harmful one. He waits for you to make a mistake. Then, he'll help you to make more, always, always under the guise of making your situation better.

Desolate areas are always the haunt of demons.

At least that's what my Catholic version of the New Testament alludes to.

All right. Take a breather.

Slow it down.

Surprisingly, a steady stream of bubbles are marking the descent of my camera.

Gee, how far down is it?

Clips of Voyage to the Bottom of the Sea fill my head, briefly.

Seaview One. Damn, I loved that show. Whatever happened to that show?

Paddle goes down into the brackish waters.

Pure stench.

And my arm and paddle are now submerged up to my armpit.

I think I'm hitting bottom.

Yes, I am!

I pull my arm out. Hey, where'd that black licorice come from?

Uh, oh… not licorice, but leeches!! Deal with those later.

I maneuver the canoe about. There is sun glare everywhere.

I take the second paddle, and block the sun over the canoe gunwale. Turns out to be a good idea.

Can see a little into the mirk, now.



Is that my camera strap shooting straight up, with the eyelet drifting backward from an unseen current?

Damn hell, it is!!

Oh, no. Can I even reach the camera-strap eyelet?

Plus, I've also got to deal with light refraction in the water.

Where the camera strap appears to be… is NOT… where it is.

Try to snag it.

I'll use the thoughtfully placed hook on paddle's hand grip, yeah! Who thought to put a hook there?

Damn, good, idea.

Numerous snag attempts. Numerous more snag attempts. Fifteen minutes pass.

Keep light blocking paddle in place. Leaning forward, but… careful, don't TIP the canoe!

The Bear-walker wanted me to lean further out. Nope.

Almost there… almost there…


I got my camera.

Pull slowly to the surface.

Yahoo, I got my camera back! I ACTUALLY, got it back.

But… is it any good?

Remove battery. Remove memory card.

Back on shore I separate lens, and camera to dry out separately.

I return the canoe to the outfitter. I tell my tale of camera woe to a disinterested youth manning the canoe hangar.

He looks away, as I speak. Women in bikinis, frolic by. I reach back and grab one of the canoe paddles, and slam the oar down on the picnic table he is sitting at.

He is now max. attentive to every word I say.

Damn, I hate the rude.

I realize right away, I don't think he's ever met a real Canadian.

Bet, he never forgets me.

He smiles and waves as I leave. The smile is fake.

Back home, I put both lens and camera back together, and right into a ten pound bag of basmati rice! That should pull the remaining moisture out of the camera.

In five days I should know IF my camera and lense can be saved! Keep ya' posted.

And Clear may laugh at the Bear-walker. But the Bear-walker has claimed many, many lives. And he's right there in your thoughts, pushing you to keep going, to act quickly without taking inventory, to not bother to hydrate yourself etc. and a million other things ill thought out things.

The Bear-walker stalks people in restaurants. Sometimes, even in your home.

Do you know how many people have died from choking in restaurants?

Here's how it unfolds. A person in trouble, starts choking and can't clear his/her throat. They don't want to make a scene so they get up and leave the table. They'll wave off others who try to help. They make their way to the bathroom because it's embarrassing to cough up dramatically in front of denizens of other folk seated around you.

If a cougher leaves the table follow him, and alert staff. Panic is starting and the person is not thinking clearly. With each step, the person is running out of air.

In the restaurant setting, the person can maintain their composure. But in the bathroom, pure panic will set in. And now the person is alone!

It will end horribly, and quickly.

That's exactly what the Bear-walker wanted. You remove yourself from friends, and family, and specially trained restaurant staff who could very easily have saved you.

When you are running out of air… you won't be able to save yourself. Remember that.

And at home don't let the Bear-walker tell you to ignore that unusual pain in your abdomen, or chest. Don't let him trick you into thinking you can sleep it off.

Yes, be aware of, and beware, the Bear-walker!

© Paul Cardin
© 2009 Special Projects in Research



Always. Well, at least ,when they can.

And portage.

And CAN SURVIVE in the wilderness for a month, no problemo.

With the bare minimum.

You don't need a tent. Or matches.

You need to be able to recognize edible plants. Set traps. Make a shelter. Keep a fire going. Protect yourself from predators.

If alone, you need to protect yourself from the bearwalker.

If really lost, you need to stay put, conserve energy and create a highly visible SOS.

Boil water and flavour with cedar leaves.

And drink LOTS!

If your urine is dark yellow… you're in trouble. On your way to dehydration.

Lose 10% of your body's water and you'll be incredibly weak, fatigued… lose a few more points and YOU'RE DONE! Delirium will set in and… that's all she wrote.

And at least ONCE in their lives, 12% of folks will be involved in a situation that will call upon survival skills.

Hope you're ready.

THIS IS the CANADIAN WILD and it shows no mercy to the careless, to ninnies, to prissies, or to the ill-prepared.

Enjoy it and savour it. BUT ALWAYS respect it.

About 20 minutes after this picture was taken, the bearwalker would put my ancient survival skills to the test. Yes, out of nowhere danger lurked, but I beat the bearwalker back. I stayed in charge.

So I lost only $4,100 dollars of camera equipment and NOT my life!

Saturday, September 5, 2009

'Course, if you look hard enough…

… you'll still find remnants of the RCAF…… and here's one.

A North Star. C-54.

71 of these were built in Montreal.

The RCAF, Trans-Canada Air Lines, Canadian Pacific Air Lines and BOAC all operated these aircraft as airliners or transports.

BOAC called them "Argonauts"

That's all.