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AMARG

After security

B-1

Lockheed C-5 Galaxy

On display

As far as the eye can see

USN, retired

P-2 Neptune Sub hunter

F-15 Eagle

Gives new meaning to the world 'stealth'

A-7 and F-4

F-14 Tomcat

Say hello to the Hog

Fighters and fighers

F-101 Voodoo

STOL transport

Trainers and turbines

Ready and waiting

Choppers, choppers everywhere

Rotors removed

C-130s

Row upon row

'Other'

Falcons

F-16

Ready for sleep

C-5s

Titan II, is that you?

Corsair II

Hulk

Canberra

B-1 behind

How many?

4 by 18

How old?

And even more

Air Guard

Soil

A-10

Big BUFF

Midsized cargo

Stripped for parts

Hawkeyes

Humvees

Choppers

Cobras

Big 'Bs'

So they sit

309th Aerospace Maintenance and Regeneration Group, aka, AMARG, aka The Boneyard. 

For the full story behind this tour, check out The Boneyard: thousands of aircraft in a desolate desert, awaiting their fate.

Caption by / Photo by Geoffrey Morrison/CNET

After the short ride from Pima Air & Space museum, you have to exit the bus and wait in a small garage before you're allowed access (by going back on the same bus). Then the tour begins in earnest. 

Caption by / Photo by Geoffrey Morrison/CNET

There's quite a mix of aircraft at AMARG. Most of them are siblings to active models.

Caption by / Photo by Geoffrey Morrison/CNET

Behold, the Lockheed C-5 Galaxy: One of the largest military aircraft ever

Caption by / Photo by Geoffrey Morrison/CNET

The first part of the Boneyard tour goes past static displays of some examples of the aircraft elsewhere in the 4,400-acre facility...

Caption by / Photo by Geoffrey Morrison/CNET

...But look in any direction, and it's just aircraft, aircraft, aircraft.

Caption by / Photo by Geoffrey Morrison/CNET

Navy aircraft get a bit extra treatment to prepare for their long sleep: fresh water wash to rid them of any salt leftover from their service.

Caption by / Photo by Geoffrey Morrison/CNET

The P-2 Neptune, patrol and sub-hunter.

Caption by / Photo by Geoffrey Morrison/CNET

To me, the F-15 is still a "new" plane, and it is still in service, but the oldest ones were built in the early '70s.

Caption by / Photo by Geoffrey Morrison/CNET

This is said to be the F-117 stealth fighter. (Get it?)

Caption by / Photo by Geoffrey Morrison/CNET

An A-7 Corsair (left) and F-4 Phantom, two very long lived aircraft. 

Caption by / Photo by Geoffrey Morrison/CNET

Check out these two big F-14 Tomcats. This fighter was state of the art when Tom Cruise flew it in "Top Gun" back in 1986, but it was retired from US Navy service more than 10 years ago. 

Caption by / Photo by Geoffrey Morrison/CNET

The beautiful A-10 Thunderbolt II, aka Warthog, is shown here in the foreground. Under the tarp, a F/A-18 Hornet

Caption by / Photo by Geoffrey Morrison/CNET

A careful eye will spot an F-16 Falcon, one of several I spotted on my tour.

Caption by / Photo by Geoffrey Morrison/CNET

In service in the US from the late '50s to the early '70s, it's doubtful the F-101 Voodoo is going to make a comeback. 

Caption by / Photo by Geoffrey Morrison/CNET

A super-rare YC-14 prototype, designed for short takeoff and landing. Only two were made. The other is at Pima.

Caption by / Photo by Geoffrey Morrison/CNET

A lonely trainer, with a few of the hundreds of sealed-up jet engines.

Caption by / Photo by Geoffrey Morrison/CNET

With just a bit of work these can be ready to power their original aircraft. 

Caption by / Photo by Geoffrey Morrison/CNET

Easily parked next to each other, it seems like there are even more helicopters because they're so close.

Caption by / Photo by Geoffrey Morrison/CNET

The rotors are kept separate.

Caption by / Photo by Geoffrey Morrison/CNET

If I had to guess, there were more C-130 Hercules than any other aircraft at AMARG.

Caption by / Photo by Geoffrey Morrison/CNET

Which makes sense given they rival the B-52 Stratofortress for longevity. Both have been in production -- and active service -- since the 1950s.

Caption by / Photo by Geoffrey Morrison/CNET

Containers galore with... other things inside. 

Actually, I'm pretty sure these hold smaller jet engines.

Caption by / Photo by Geoffrey Morrison/CNET

More F-16s. This looks almost like a whole squadron has been mothballed.

Caption by / Photo by Geoffrey Morrison/CNET

Though first built in the 1970s, the F-16 is still being manufactured today, and is one of the most common military aircraft in the world. Still slick looking too. 

Caption by / Photo by Geoffrey Morrison/CNET

An F-16 getting ready to go into storage. 

Caption by / Photo by Geoffrey Morrison/CNET

When there are so many, they seem smaller. Make no mistake, these transports are massive aircraft. 

Caption by / Photo by Geoffrey Morrison/CNET

That sure looks like a disassembled Titan II, similar to the one in the silo at the Titan II Missile Museum

Caption by / Photo by Geoffrey Morrison/CNET

The A-7 was still in use in Greece in 2014, 23 years after they were retired from the US Air Force.

Caption by / Photo by Geoffrey Morrison/CNET

Some airframes go in pieces, as other aircraft need their parts to keep flying. This is a big part of what makes AMARG so useful. It's a lot cheaper to remove and refurbish a part than make or buy a new one (if that's even possible). 

Caption by / Photo by Geoffrey Morrison/CNET

Well that's not something you see every day: A RB-57F Canberra.

Caption by / Photo by Geoffrey Morrison/CNET

Even missing part of its empennage and some body panels, the B-1 supersonic bomber is still a gorgeous aircraft. 

Caption by / Photo by Geoffrey Morrison/CNET

According to Wikipedia, 100 B-1Bs were manufactured. If that's true, it appears that a sizable percentage of that total lives here at the Boneyard.

Caption by / Photo by Geoffrey Morrison/CNET

A few more F/A-18 Hornets nose-to-nose with one of their predecessors, the F-4.

Caption by / Photo by Geoffrey Morrison/CNET

These C-130s look brand new, other than the white protective coverings.

Caption by / Photo by Geoffrey Morrison/CNET

There have to be hundreds here.

Caption by / Photo by Geoffrey Morrison/CNET

One from the Tennessee Air National Guard.

Caption by / Photo by Geoffrey Morrison/CNET

Along with the weather, the densely-packed soil in this part of Arizona is another benefit to the AMARG location.

Caption by / Photo by Geoffrey Morrison/CNET

Though aging, the A-10 is still such a useful and popular plane, it's not surprising to see one up on blocks with its parts missing to help its still-flying siblings.  

Caption by / Photo by Geoffrey Morrison/CNET

Speaking of aging and being useful, the mighty B-52. Even the newest are 55 years old, and they're expected to stay in service into the 2040s.

Caption by / Photo by Geoffrey Morrison/CNET

I believe this is a C-135 Stratolifter -- but don't quote me on that.

Caption by / Photo by Geoffrey Morrison/CNET

And another likely C-135. But this one is being stripped for parts.

Caption by / Photo by Geoffrey Morrison/CNET

So many E-2 Hawkeyes.

Caption by / Photo by Geoffrey Morrison/CNET

Though primarily aircraft storage, there are a few hundred ground vehicles as well.

Caption by / Photo by Geoffrey Morrison/CNET

The iconic Huey. Lots of iconic Hueys, as a matter of fact.

Caption by / Photo by Geoffrey Morrison/CNET

And of course, its thinner sibling, the Huey Cobra.

Caption by / Photo by Geoffrey Morrison/CNET

This is such an incredible juxtaposition. Next to the C-5, the B-1 looks positively tiny. Except it's not, it's nearly as long as a B-52! The C-5 is really just that massive.

Caption by / Photo by Geoffrey Morrison/CNET

The bus brings us back to Pima Air & Space museum, while the aircraft remain in the sun.

For the full story behind this tour, check out The Boneyard: thousands of aircraft in a desolate desert, awaiting their fate.

Caption by / Photo by Geoffrey Morrison/CNET
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