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Thread: New pilot -- best places for a newbie to fly to

  1. #1

    Default New pilot -- best places for a newbie to fly to

    Became a private pilot before moving up here. Now I want to explore the state with my new freedom! I received my training in nose wheel and will get training for tailwheel. Will be flying my friends 170.

    So what do you recommend for a newbie to the state to get used to flying in Alaska as well as a newbie to flying? I am getting instruction in the area and can tag along with some buddies.

    I started to make a list of airports that I'd like to go to from the FAA site.

    http://www.alaska.faa.gov/fai/airports.htm#Yukon


    Delta
    Clear
    New Minto
    Black Rapids
    CHSR
    Tanacross
    McKinley
    Healy River
    Nenana
    Clear Sky Lodge
    Beaver
    Birch Creek

    Thanks for the help!

  2. #2

    Default

    Whats a AIRPORT............?

  3. #3
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    Default

    If you are moving to the Anchorage area keep your flights in the Mat-su valley until you get some Alaska time and build some flight areas. That will keep you out of the mountains until you are ready and you will be less likely to get stuck somewere due to weather. Try Willow, Talkeetna , Sqwetna etc.

  4. #4
    Member akaviator's Avatar
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    I agree with cubdriver. Save the adventure for blue sky days. Skwentna will be fun for you, because it's off the road system, Talkeetna you can park with Denali flyer crowd. Fly up towards Glennallen on a blue sky day and get used to the mountains, if it's not blowin' hard drop down to a lower altitude and get a feel what things look like IF the cloud cover was there. Have fun, be safe, and never second guess that gut feeling that says turn around!

  5. #5
    Member ocnfish's Avatar
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    Default How about heading south?

    If you have a good day, no big preasure diference between PWS & Anchorage cross Turnagin arm and head for Kenai, Homer or ... my favorite Seldovia. If you get to Seldovia (watch out for lots of cessna 206 & 207 charter ops) it is a short walk from the airport to "downtown". Personally I like to get a bite to eat at the Tide Pool cafe .... from may to july take your fishing pole and try to catch a state stocked king salmon at the bridge.
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    Member Float Pilot's Avatar
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    Find some places with a cafe on or near the field for some of your first trips.

    Kenai has a cafe, a tower and lots of runway. But is also has a gravel strip.

    Homer has CeeCee's cafe that is open until about 1400 hrs. But Starvin Marvins's pizza is not a long walk either.

    Seldovia's down town is an easy walk from the air strip. Be advised that lots of city folk from outside have had problems at Seldovia. The wind can go both ways on each end of the strip, and there is some sort of optical illusion at high tide that makes people come in high and hot.

    The Sunshine (or is it Sunrise) cafe is a short walk from the Quartz Creek strip. Please note the Quartz Creek gets weird winds at times and sometimes the strip gets wash out areas.

    The Skwentna Road house is also a short walk from the Skwentna strip.

    I teach lots of tailwheel and lots of floats. Oddly enough I have seen lots of folks smacking up their C-170s for the last few years. They are not a mild as a Cub or T-Craft and sometimes their gear legs will start to do the shimmy and shake.

    If you are from out of State (NO ALASKA TIME) I would suggest you find a CFI to take you out to a few places and give you some mountain flying time. I have done that for several folks who have moved into my area and it has always resulted in a reduction to their insurance premiums.

    Call when you are ready for some Float Flying. It is about as much fun as you can have with your pants on.
    Floatplane,Tailwheel and Firearms Instructor- Dragonfly Aero
    Experimental Hand-Loader, NRA Life Member
    http://site.dragonflyaero.com

  7. #7

    Default

    Were are you flying out of?

  8. #8

    Default FLying

    Thanks for the advice. Not new to AK, just did my training outside.

    I'm flying out of North Pole.

    Any advice for areas near Fairbanks / Delta / ? (Still keep the ANC areas coming though...I'm enjoying this!)

    Thanks

  9. #9
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    Gold King, Upper St. George, Denali Wilderness Lodge strip.....Louis
    Louis Knapp

  10. #10

    Default

    If you are basing in Fairbanks some good places to stretch your legs are Nenana, Minto, Manley, Livengood. Pick your days to begin with and then work on up. The weather can bite you. I would stick to runways until you get some instruction off airport, especially if you are borrowing a plane. Later there are lots of off airport strips around Fairbanks you can use. There is also Minchumina although I haven't landed there before. If you are going to go through any of the passes talk to someone who spends some time in them. There is a reason they call windy pass windy. That goes for all passes up here. Be careful and pick your weather. If flying to Talkeetna check the supplement and charts, there are specific flying regs with frequencies for the area around Denali. Above all have fun and be safe.

  11. #11

    Default

    Is the strip at Chena hot springs public? that would be a fun little trip.

  12. #12
    New member akhunter02's Avatar
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    Default Nope

    Not public, but if your flying there to have lunch it works out nicely, Rising terrain all around and can be tight if the winds are funky

  13. #13
    Member broncoformudv's Avatar
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    Default

    Delta gets a bit windy. Black Rapids has wind as well but it tends to blow in the direction the strip is running and is more of a dirt parking lot on the side of the road.

  14. #14

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    Minchumina is a great airport for a beginner, long and wide, though a lot of wilderness between Fairbanks and Minchumina Also, you are in the lightning belt there, watch for convective activity during the summer.

  15. #15
    Member ocnfish's Avatar
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    Default Minchumina

    Don't for get the fishing pole for the hammer handle Pike with the occasional wopper. Great place to pitch a tent and spend the night. Don't forget the bug dope ....

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