A memorable mission with QF-4 Phantom IIs and F-14 Tomcats in the heyday of missile testing operations at Point Mugu.

QF-4N BuNo 150465 during a manned flight from Point Mugu in July 1996 while attached to the resident test squadron.

IT WAS LESS than a stellar day on the weather front back in March 1998. There were three layers of gloomy clouds spread across the skies and robust winds combined with a ‘marine layer’ just above the ocean surface. Still, we had a mission to do: a live-firing VX-9 ‘Vampires’ F-14 Tomcat feeding frenzy, clawing at a sole unmanned QF-4N Phantom II off the coast of Point Mugu, California, within the expansive Whiskey 291 range complex.

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