February News

In February Don flew with Larry, from Samaritan’s Purse, back out to Hooper Bay with the 50 Christmas Boxes we were short the first time. Dave & Steve Peterson hitched a ride so they could do some finishing work on the Samaritan Purse houses. From there we headed off to Scammon Bay, just 40 miles north with the 14 cartons (about 240 boxes). However the wind prevented us from even attempting a landing (also the runway was reported very slick due to being covered with ice from a recent thaw). We decided to continue on to Bethel, where we parked at the Hagland Aviation ramp. They off loaded our cargo and delivered it when the winds died down. Larry & I then flew back to Soldotna where we fueled the airplane and put all the seats in. The next day we started early. but were unable to go because of icing conditions. We taxied back and phoned our passengers that there would be a delay. By 10 AM the weather had improved enough that we were able to fly. We got to Big Lake in time to scrape the ice off the wings before the passengers arrived. Sorry I don’t have any pictures to show. Will try to get some next time. This was my first time dealing with the amount of ice we had. I’m glad the aircraft is equipped for flight in ice.

When not flying: There is a push on to get Navajo 65MR back in the air after almost two years down. My job is to strip the paint off the first foot of wing top and bottom. It’s a bit tricky because I can’t get any paint stripper on the new boots that cover the leading edge of the wing nor on the paint aft of the seam we are painting up to. As a result it takes about four times for each section and I use a blade at the edges to put on the stripper and take it off. I have even been forced to put on my bifocals because I have to get so close to the work – bah humbug. I’m still fighting this “getting old” thing. Oh to be flying.

Click on the picture below to see more photos on the Flickr.com website.