Viewed from a sidewalk at the edge of Midtown Manhattan, here's USS Intrepid, and the Intrepid Sea, Air, and Space Museum.
Iconic airplanes ranging from F-14 and F-16s, to the Concorde and the Space Shuttle, to the submarine USS Growler, are all on display.
Read on for a full photo tour of these epic vehicles and museum.
For the full story behind the tour, check out A tour of the Intrepid Sea, Air and Space Museum.
The Intrepid was commissioned in August 1943. After several decommissioning and recommissionings, it was finally decommissioned in 1974. She opened as a museum ship in 1982.
Still better looking than any modern airliner.
I wonder if Concorde pilots would have bets if not to hit this wheel.
You can't walk through the Concorde anymore without a special tour (which I wasn't able to do). So this, and the following image, are from a walk-through I did a few years ago.
Notice how narrow the cabin and seats are.
Rarely upgraded, the Concorde was one of the last commercial airliners with a Flight Engineer (the third seat).
The port aircraft elevator. You can ride this at specific times during the day.
Slightly smaller, and slightly faster, than the better known SR-71, the A-12 looks just like it at first glance.
This was the seventh F-14 built by Grumman. The Navy retired all remaining F-14s in 2006.
During the summer, there's a line to get up into the Island (where the bridge is). Doesn't take too long, though.
Is that supposed to be a tiger?
The tail cap makes the Shuttle a little more aerodynamic for transport.
Do you think this warning saved any lives?
The guy who actually "drove" the ship was stationed behind where I'm standing, taking orders from the officers up here who could actually see where they were going.
Turns out, a lot of this equipment was taken from other ships of the era. So this wasn't necessarily what was installed on the Intrepid at the time of its decommission, but would have likely been found here at some point (like the radar display in the foreground).
Here you can see a few more of the plane/helicopters I didn't have the room to have full images of, like the Harrier (which I featured in my RAF Museum Tour). Going left to right from there, a Huey, Sea Cobra, Chickasaw, Seaguard, Kfir, and the others I showed earlier.
My car is from the 70's and it doesn't have any cupholders. So clearly the Navy got their money's worth.
Just off the Navigation Bridge is the Captain's Sea Cabin. Pretty short commute, that.
Just below frame is the wheel used to steer the ship, using one of these redundant compasses. The tubes are backup for backups, but ensure communication to other important areas of the ship even if power is lost.
Communications gear and a map table. The latter has New York harbor.
The main Hanger Deck has been converted to a museum space. It doesn't even feel like you're on a ship, actually. Too huge and wide open.
Prop anyone? The Intrepid had four of these.
I've actually never seen one of these up close. This is off a different Avenger. Not sure I could even fit in there. There must have been some serious height and weight requirements.
The Exploreum is an interactive area with a bit of history, science, and exhibits about life on navy ships and boats.
One of the missions the Intrepid performed in its later life was as the recovery ship for Mercury and Gemini missions.
Not exactly lavish, but certainly a better living area than the enlisted men several decks below (which we'll see later).
An entire room just for the chains for the anchors (basically). Foreword of this is the Hurricane Bow. It, like this room, was open to the elements originally, but later enclosed (as you see here).
The Intrepid's compliment of Marines had their berths up near the forecastle.
After moving the Pilot's Ready Room deeper into the ship for safety, they needed some way to get the pilots (wearing all their gear) up to the flight deck. So they put in this escalator.
While the lease on the Intrepid is only $1 a year, the museum still has to maintain it. Many off-limits areas are probably that way because of cost to make them publicly accessible/safe. That yellow warning sign, for instances, says "Asbestos."
Here's how you prepare food for about 3,000 men...
And here's how you do their dishes.
In 1969 the mess was improved to add some color and "unique decor" to give the sailors something to look at besides "endless steel walls."
In addition to the Western theme of the Second Class Mess, there was also the cafe theme seen here. All the materials were bought at yard sales.
While the officers got reasonable bunk beds, the enlisted crew got squeezed in like this. Not much for privacy.
This is the opposite angle from the last photo, showing more what the crew stationed here were looking at all shift long. Check out the big headphones.
Why do I feel like a smartphone and some antennas could do all of this?
After WWII the ready room was moved down here, around the corner from the CIC, (hence the need for the escalator shown earlier).
Who's where, when, and where are they going?
This room was labeled, I'm not kidding, the Shoe Polishing Room. Yep, a whole room just to polish shoes.
The wings of the Regulus would fold up. As a sign of how quickly things moved in during the Cold War, the Growler was only in service for 6 years. By 1964 she was already obsolete.
Space is at a premium on these boats, hence the bedding in the torpedo room.
As you'll see in a few of these pictures, the signs describing each room prevent descent photos. Oh well.
This, as you can see, is the Missile Checkout and Guidance Center, where, presumably, you can check out a missile for day trips, and help it figure out what it should do for a career.
The commanding officer's quarters.
Chief Petty Officer, the highest ranking enlisted man on the boat. He still has to share a room, but with a bit more space.
The periscope is set up so you can see out it.
Despite fictional portrayals, subs rarely use active sonar (i.e. "One ping only...), since it gives away their position.
Checkers eh? Not even a TV?
Though, I guess in 1964 what would you watch? No Blu-ray, certainly. DVD I guess. Satellite? No, that's crazy. Where would they put the dish?
Hope you like your neighbor.
Most crew got to shower about once a month.
Unlike nuclear subs (with their essentially unlimited electrical power), potable water was a limited resource on diesel-electric subs. This is one of the distillers.
Three engines, three sets of controls and readout dials.