Prince Harry Arrives in El Centro

California gets a royal visitor for the next two months

Buckingham Palace said Friday that Prince Harry has arrived in the United States for a two-month military helicopter training course.

The prince, a British Army captain, will start his training at the Naval Air Facility at El Centro, Calif. -- a two-hour drive from San Diego -- where he will fly Apache helicopters in the desert near the Mexican border. The facility hosts allied troops throughout the year because its hot, dusty conditions replicate Afghanistan's harsh environment and the clear weather allows for constant flying.

Harry is among 20 students in the British Army participating in the training that ends at an Air Force station in Gila Bend, Ariz. where they will fire missiles, rockets and cannons from the Apache helicopters.

Harry's not the first royal visitor California has had this year. In July, Prince William and his new bride Kate Middleton visited Los Angeles for their first official trip to California as a couple.

Copyright NBC San Diego / Associated Press

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