Seeing the space shuttle flying on top of its modified 747 carrier is rare. This image of Endeavour riding it over the Mojave a few days ago, however, is absolutely awesome. Updated with 1600px-wide version.
Click on the image above to get the 1600 x 1200 pixel version
Space Shuttle mission STS-126—which brought the materials and made the renovations at the International Space Station—had to land at the Edwards Air Force Base on November 30. Here you can see it as it touches down that day, on Runway 4 at 4:25:06 PM.
The landing was actually a detour from its original landing point in Cape Canaveral, Florida, caused by weather conditions. When this strange occurrence happens, NASA has to fly back the shuttle to the Kennedy Space Center, so it can get revised and fixed for the next flight. The whole trip costs NASA a total of $1.8 million, including flying the modified 747 and getting the shuttle ready for the flight.
And finally, the almost impossible take off.