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Space shuttle Endeavour departs, heads to Sacramento, S.F.

September 21, 2012 |  8:20 am

The space shuttle Endeavour has departed on its final flight, leaving Edwards Air Force Base for its farewell tour over California.

Scores of people headed to the desert to catch a last glipse of space shuttle Endeavour in flight. Many flocked to Air Force Plant 42 in Palmdale, where the shuttle was assembled.

Lora Counts, 68, said that she has lived in Lancaster almost her entire life and remembers the first test flight of orbiter Enterprise in 1977.

TIMELOG: Endeavour's final journey

"That was the beginning," Counts said. "This is the end."

The shuttle is expected to fly over the state Capitol around 9:30 a.m. before heading toward the San Francisco Bay, and then Monterey.

After returning to Southern California at 11:30 a.m., it will fly around local landmarks and land at Los Angeles International Airport around 12:30 p.m.

FULL COVERAGE: Endeavour's final journey to L.A.

A list of San Francisco landmarks has not been released -- but we would guess the Golden Gate Bridge will be included. Officials have advised onlookers to head toward:

  • Bay Area Discovery Museum, Sausalito
  • Chabot Space and Science Center, Oakland
  • Exploratorium, San Francisco, 
  • Lawrence Hall of Science, Berkeley
  • Monterey Bay Aquarium
  • NASA’s Ames/Moffet Field, Mountain View 

From there, Endeavour will go on its last aerial victory lap, gliding over landmarks such as Malibu, the Getty Center and Disneyland. If you're stuck at work, The Times will offer a live webcast of the Endeavour's final flight on Friday morning at latimes.com.

INTERACTIVE: Endeavour comes to California

Endeavour will fly over at least the following Southern California sites:
  • Los Angeles City Hall
  • California Science Center
  • Getty Center
  • Griffith Observatory
  • Queen Mary
  • Aquarium of the Pacific in Long Beach
  • Malibu, Venice and Huntington beaches
  • Jet Propulsion Laboratory
  • Universal Studios
  • Disneyland

After it lands at LAX on Friday, the shuttle will be housed at a United Airlines hangar until Oct. 12, when it will begin a two-day celebratory trek through the city's streets to the museum's new Samuel Oschin display pavilion.

Tweet your photos to @latimes or @lanow with the hashtag #SpotTheShuttle. Don't forget to tell us where you are! Photos can also be uploaded here or emailed to latimes-2do82r@olapic.it. Check back -- we'll be compiling the best reader photos.


Space shuttle Endeavour: Where to spot the shuttle

Space shuttle Endeavour in California: Submit your photos

'Space geeks' welcome shuttle Endeavour to Edwards Air Force Base

-- Ann M. Simmons at Edwards AFB and Kate Mather