When you think about the basic concept of aviation—incredibly large metal objects zooming miles up in the air at speeds impossible to reach on the ground—it’s hard to get rid of the sense that there is something inherently magical about it, despite what all the physicists say.
So it’s fitting that this week’s photos each capture an ephemeral aspect of flight, something that is real that you can clearly see but never actually touch.
Ryan McManus’s photo of a National Airlines flight carrying cargo at Pittsburgh International Airport illustrates the immense power needed to propel aircraft. The shimmering exhaust trails generated by this Boeing 747-400’s four huge engines dwarf the Cessna Citation taxiing by.
And in our second image, Larry Whitney of Oakmont, Pa., used a plane’s-eye-view to snap a unique photo of the Windy City. On approach to Chicago O’Hare International Airport, he saw what is often touted as the best city skyline in the U.S., except in an ethereal form: the setting sun projected the shadows of buildings onto Lake Michigan.
Our readers continue to pass along shots of unique aircraft, international airports, historical events, gorgeous views and even family vacation photos for this feature. We love them! Keep them coming—you can click here for submission guidelines.