Surfing the Sky

Members of UCSB’s ROTC Surfrider Battalion take to the sky in a high-tech version of an old workhorse helicopter

Members of the UC Santa Barbara ROTC unit – the Surfrider Battalion – got to experience some of the best technology the U.S. Army has to offer when they took off in a new Chinook CH-47F helicopter. Cadets piled into the iconic helicopter’s cargo bay for an aerial tour high above the Santa Barbara coastline, a ride that demonstrated both the power and the versatility that make the Chinook the transport helicopter of choice even some 50 years after it was introduced.


This model, which belongs to Stockton-based B Company, 1st Battalion, 126th Aviation Regiment — known as the Delta Schooners — features a high-tech digital cockpit that improves the pilot’s situational awareness and control. In California, Chinooks are used not only for military transport but also for search-and-rescue and firefighting.

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