It is a shame they couldn't find one for you to photograph that hadn't been pounded on with a hammer!
Believe it or not but those dents weren't made with a hammer - but the refuelling probe of a KC-135R or KC-10A tanker! By putting the refuelling nozzle so close to the nose of the aircraft, it frequently will "bump" into the nose or get dragged along the nose.
It actually did bring out its kid sister but she wasn't looking any better either
Haha, well you can't see the stars during the day...maybe you can at high altitude. I was just saying it was confusing because it was making me think your flight initiated in pre-dawn hours, but it didn't...did it?
It was the best I could think of!
I think we didn't get airborne until 17:30 with all the delays and all. There were definitely no stars visible in the sky, in fact all I could see was grey goo! It doesn't help when your front seater tells you...."Geesh look at that crap out there. Will you believe it that we have clear visibility here for about 362 days a year?".
As you are not on an official fun ride, how do you manage to keep the viewfinder to your eye and not smash the lens against the canopy or worse still, have it smash against your nose?
That's always an interesting one - you sort of don't. That is, you can't put the viewfinder to your eye as you would normally do, because the helmet visor and oxygen mask are in the way. So you actually look through the view finder at a greater distance than you might be used to, which is a great way of getting really sick in that back seat. I know a few photographers that normally have no problems flying or performing aerobatics but will usually lose their lunch once or twice throughout a photo flight for that very same reason.
In terms of not hitting the canopy, well you can fit a rubber hood to the lens. Some I know use a cut-out mouse pad that fits around the opening the lens. I have used the rubber hood at times and other times I have just made sure not to hit the canopy. Especially in the F-16, the canopy is quite spacious and there is plenty of "room" around you to work in.