The Canadian Forces 431 Air Demonstration Squadron, known to most airshow fans as the Royal Canadian Snowbirds, wrapped up their 2017 show season October 14th and 15th at Gowen Field Air National Guard Base (ANGB) in Boise Idaho. The event, Gowen Thunder, also featured the USAF Thunderbirds and many other attractions. This video, uploaded to YouTube by Match Productions, captures the essence of a Showbirds show via clips from most of them. Enjoy!
The 2017 show season got off to a rocky start for the Snowbirds. The team cancelled seven Canadian and US shows between May 13th and June 4th for a safety stand down spent at their home base, 15 Wing Moose Jaw or CFB Moose Jaw in Saskatchewan. The team felt that poor weather conditions during the early practice season led to too many cancelled practice sessions and limited the quality of several more. The call was made by Snowbirds Team Lead Major Patrick Gobeil.
The Snowbirds fly Canadair CT-114 Tutor single engine jet trainers that are on average older than their pilots. The Snowbirds have been pleasing and impressing airshow crowds since 1971. The Snowbirds first became featured performers at the EAA Fly-In Convention at Oshkosh, Wisconsin in 1976. Regulars at Fly-Ins between 1976 and 1983, the Snowbirds were committed elsewhere and focused primarily on performances in their Canadian homeland. After far too long an absence, the team returned to Oshkosh in 2016 and performed at the renamed EAA AirVenture Oshkosh.