The departure of the USS Nimitz Wednesday came as a bit of a surprise. While a friend told me that Bremerton’s second aircraft carrier was heading out, my garage door opener was still working fine.
Alas, when I checked in with Naval Base Kitsap-Bremerton officials Wednesday morning, the massive ship was already moving out into Sinclair Inlet.
I pedaled down to Bachmann Park in Manette for a view of the 1,100 foot-long carrier, a major muscle in our country’s permanent military force, and its 3,000-strong crew. The ship is headed out for sea trials.
Later, I headed up to East 30th Street, as the Nimitz passed through Rich Passage and into the wider Puget Sound.
We’re getting used to seeing these beasts, as the USS John C. Stennis, Bremerton’s other home-ported carrier recently departed for training.
The Nimitz, which turns 42 this next May, is the fleet’s oldest carrier. It was homeported in Bremerton following its 16-month, $240 million overhaul, and will remain here until at least 2019.
Did you get photos? Send them to me at firstname.lastname@example.org and I will upload them here.