Saturday, April 28, 2012

AOPA: Frederick airport 'most female-friendly'

By Jill W. Tallman

Women Fly it ForwardIt’s official: Frederick Municipal Airport, the home base of AOPA, is the most female-friendly airport in the United States. Local pilots flew 242 women and girls out of the airport on March 10 to secure the national title.

Pilots worldwide carried 1,104 girls and women aloft during Women of Aviation Worldwide Week, March 5 to 11. A helicopter pilot at Yellowknife Airport in the Northwest Territories of Canada secured the international title for her airport. Kirsten Brazier and three colleagues flew helicopters for about six hours nonstop. They took 421 girls and women on flights on March 10, setting a new one-day record and a new one-week record, according to Women of Aviation Worldwide.

Pilots in Frederick and in Gonzales, La.; Port Lavaca, Texas; and Southern Ontario, Canada, continued a tradition begun in 2011. For 2012, new groups of pilots joined the Women of Aviation Worldwide Week in Oregon, Idaho, and Wyoming; and in Quebec and the Northwest Territories.

Flying awards

Two Maryland women received flight training awards this week for their participation in the Frederick Women Fly It Forward event. 

Ellan Kim, Clarksburg, received a free flight lesson and a Sporty’s private pilot ground school course from the Sugarloaf Chapter of the International Organization of Women Pilots (The Ninety-Nines). A high school student, Kim plans to pursue a degree in the medical field. In her essay, she said that for the 20 minutes she was in the air, “My unforgettable experience up in the sky gave me a clear vision for what I wanted in the future.”

Toni Cimino Michelsen of Arnold, Md., received a $3,000 award to begin flight instruction, courtesy Aviation Insurance Resources. She will train at Frederick Flight Center, which contributed a 10-percent discount on flight instruction. Local pilots contributed a flight bag and a Gleim study guide. Michelsen, who will retire from teaching in June, said in her essay that the Fly It Forward event reawakened a long-held dream to learn to fly.

"This year's goal of Fly it Forward was for someone to walk away with more than just a free flight. We wanted to give someone the best chance at becoming a pilot themselves,” said Victoria Neuville, who organized the Frederick event. 

“It is part of our obligation in aviation to help promote and inspire new pilots and we are delighted to provide an opportunity for a future pilot to pursue her dream,” said Aviation Insurance Resources President Jon Harden.

Friday, April 27, 2012

Let's get WOAW to the top of You Tube!

Wouldn't it be awesome that when people searched for women flying or women in aviation, that the many activities during Women of Aviation Week popped up at the very top?  What a better way to get ladies young and old excited about flying than seeing all those happy faces in the sky?  Although I've posted this video before, here it is again.  This inspirational video needs to be spread like wildfire.  Help me up those views and give it a "thumbs up" while you're at it! 

Friday, April 20, 2012

My First Flight

I was 16 years old.  Upset that I needed a job, but couldn't until I had a car.  I needed a job to buy a car, though!  Luckily, I snagged a job and my mom was willing to drive me for awhile.  My dad bought me a $1,000 Geo Spectrum from the 80s that was bright blue and had strange stains on the grey seats. Although it was not a vehicle to brag about to my friends, I was excited to have wheels at all.  One of my first drives in this car was to FNT: Flint Bishop International Airport.  I had just completed private pilot ground school.  I was the youngest in the class full of men in their 30s and up.  My dad was already a pilot but joined me as a refresher.  Once the last class concluded, he signed me up for my first flight.  It was a windy day at the airport, one I would later frequent practicing instrument approaches.  Boy, was my flight instructor cute and he had a great accent!  This was a bad combination for a teenage first time flyer.  After I got over his good looks I enjoyed the flight and was hooked.  I knew someday I would get to fly in the left seat again, and I would come across many more cute boy pilots :o)  I walk down memory lane because my father recently posted this video of that very flight:

Thursday, April 19, 2012

Stuck Mic #22!

Ooooooooweeeee, what a great show we’ve got lined up for you today! Carl and Len report on their exploits and tomfoolery from Sun N Fun 2012, Rick updates us on the happenings with our friends at Terrafugia and their roadable aircraft, Len shares a story about telling air traffic control to piss off, Victoria gives us some pointers on special considerations when flying with your furry loved ones, no not your husband but your pets, and Carls talks about severe turbulence signs and flight characteristics.  Listen now!

Wednesday, April 18, 2012

Flight Lesson Essay Contest Winner

This Monday, the winners of the Frederick Women Fly it Forward event's essay contests were announced.  Congratulations to Ellan Kim who has earned a free flight lesson and private pilot course thanks to the Sugarloaf Chapter of the Ninety Nines!  I loved her excitement when I told her she had one of the winning essays, I think she may have been in shock at first!

The Connection: Nature and Me

A bird’s wings are said to be a bird’s most prized possession. They allow it to find nourishment for its young and escape from the cold weather during the winter. They give it a whole new way of looking at the world, a wider and deeper perspective. And they give birds a unique advantage over others; freedom. Although flying is not an evolutionary advantage to the human race that has helped us to survive in the animal kingdom, it is a significant to those who have mastered its art. Pilots everyday use the sky as a means of communication, defense, travel and entertainment. These people look at the world through a different angle, from the perspective of a bird in the sky. However, even in this select group of individuals, another group stands out: women. Although the U.S is one of the most modernized countries in the world, unconscious stereotypes still remain about the role that women should play in the society.

Society and women pilots have developed a mutual relationship today. Women pilots are able to break free from society when up in the sky. They are no longer a teacher, accountant, engineer and politician, but a creature of nature and the animal kingdom. There are no norms and complications, but only passion, passion to fly and feel the smooth, curvature of the air as the plane follows its lead. And there is freedom, freedom to be who one truly is. Freedom to express what has been withheld. Freedom to become a bird. On the other hand, women pilots catalyze the future advancements in our society by narrowing the gap between traditional gender occupations. Even during WWII women rarely piloted aircrafts and often only maintained the physical conditions of the aircrafts. However today, hundreds of women, both for military and nonmilitary reasons, can experience the joy of taking the controls. Women who choose to fly are those who truly have passion for flying. These passionate individuals further the advancement in our society and defy standards to pave the way for future young girls. They are the pioneers and leaders of a country that will be devoid of gender stereotypes in the future.

Flying was a distant reality for me until I attended the Fly it Forward event in Fredrick. As a sophomore in high school my world revolved around schoolwork and college acceptance. I did not feel like I was allowed to enjoy myself, not until senior year was over. And then college would begin and my daily stresses would start all over again. However, when I was riding beside a pilot in her small airplane I knew that I wanted to make room in my life for this experience. I felt as though I was escaping from all the complications of school and entering a simpler life, one where I am only another being in nature.

It was a feeling that I will not grow old, a feeling of pure joy. My mind and thoughts became clear as though flying was cleaning my brain. And I felt calm. My unforgettable experience up in the sky gave me a clear vision for what I wanted in the future. Although I do not want to give up my prior dreams in the medical field, I do feel that I would like flying to be one of my future hobbies. In this way, I believe that through my many stresses and hardships in life, I can always count on aviation to be my escape. Also I would really like my children to experience the same happiness and freedom as well.

Speech, religion and expression are all freedoms that the Constitution grants its citizens. Flight is a freedom that an individual grants for herself. Through dedication I know that anyone can become a pilot. Women of generations before me have paved that way for me to follow a passion that has given me irresistible joy. They have created opportunities for girls to gain freedom. I would like to grab this opportunity. It is my chance to become one with nature and release my inner self.

Tuesday, April 17, 2012

Read the Flight Training Winning Essay!

This Monday, the winners of the Frederick Women Fly it Forward event's essay contests were announced.  Congratulations to Toni Michelsen who will be on her way to her private pilot certificate thanks to sponsors Aviation Insurance Resources and Frederick Flight Center!  

Toni is very excited to start her flight training this summer.  When I talked to her on the phone, I said I would email her additional information.  She wanted me to wait, she didn't want her husband to see it so she could tell him herself.  I'm sure he is very proud of her!  Here is the winning essay:

In February, one of my husband's colleagues at work mentioned an upcoming event called "Woman Fly It Forward" that was going to be held at the Frederick Municipal Airport in early March that he then relayed to me.  Early the next day, I signed up for this event, and on March 10, 2012, my seven-year-old granddaughter, Sophia, and I became first-time flyers at the Frederick Women Fly it Forward event.  And what an exciting day it was for both of us! 
I have had a fascination with flying since I was a young girl which probably stems from the fact that my father, a career military officer, would talk with passion about his love of flying that began when he was a young boy, and culminating with him becoming a pilot in the Army Air Corps during World War II.  He was a military officer in the U.S. Air Force for the next 30 years, and his love of flying never diminished.  Having grown up on military bases, my family had regular Sunday outings to the flight line to watch the planes, and later, the jets take off and land.  It was always a thrilling sight to see, and I quickly learned every aircraft that flew on the bases where we were stationed.   
One of my childhood memories revolved around Amelia Earhart.  I read her biography when I was in elementary school, and thought how incredibly magnificent her life must have been.  I would dream about taking to flight someday when I was old enough to do so.  What I didn't realize at the time was how difficult it would be for a young woman to pursue her dream of flying.  With a few noteworthy exceptions, flying was considered to be "man's business."   Once I graduated from college in 1970, got married, started a family, and became established in a career, life became quite busy, and I had to table my dream of learning how to fly.  Well, it's now forty-some years later, and I'm set to retire this summer, so my long-submerged dream has been reawakened by the "Women Fly It Forward" event I attended last weekend.  It was quite impressive to meet so many women pilots (of all ages) at the event and to witness their enthusiasm and love for flying.  I seriously thought that I would be too old to learn the skills involved with flying, but my pilot, Jeff (about my age), assured me that he had taken up flying just four years ago, and was now not only a licensed pilot, but was instrumental certified, as well.
It has been quite encouraging over the years to see the enormous strides made for women wishing to become pilots.  As a guidance counselor, I remember talking to a young woman regarding her hope of becoming a pilot someday.  A few years later, I heard that after graduating from college, she attended Embry-Riddle, and now is a pilot for Delta Airlines.  I think it is important to empower young women with the knowledge that with hard work and determination, they can follow their dreams, no matter how daunting their journey may appear.  By bringing my granddaughter along on the flight last weekend, I was hoping she would see that women can do and be anything they put their "heart and mind" to.  And of course, I was also hoping she would experience the same thrill that her grandmother feels every time she takes to flight.

Monday, April 16, 2012

WFIF Essay Contest Winners Announced!

When I decided to organize Fly it Forward in 2011, my goal was to introduce as many women to aviation as possible, and maybe earn the airport a trophy along the way.  With the great success of Frederick Municipal Airport's inaugural event, I knew I had an opportunity to make an even larger impact.  I wanted to ensure that at least one lady who took her introductory flight at Fly it Forward would be able to continue on her aviation journey.  I know from experience that the road to becoming a pilot is no easy task and there can be many hurdles along the way.  My goal was to to help that one girl or women know that financing her training would not be one of those hurdles.  These thoughts gave birth to the Women Fly it Forward essay contest.

With the gracious support of many local sponsors, especially with the help of our elite sponsor Aviation Insurance Resources and a generous discount and free ground school provided by Frederick Flight Center, the essay contest reached a value of $3,000.  Local pilots also donated flight bags and Gleim study guides to help the winner on her way.  It is hoped that with the support of the local pilot community and this monetary flight award, the winning essay author could at least reach her first solo. 

Excitement filled the air for the essay contest, so much that a second award was created.  The Sugarloaf chapter of the Ninety-Nines sponsored a teen flight essay contest.  This award would go to a young lady between the ages of 14 and 19, who would receive one free flight lesson and a Sporty's private pilot course.

So without further ado, I am delighted to announce the following winners:

Flight Training Essay Contest: Toni Michelsen - Arnold, MD
Toni is retiring as an upper school counselor this year and excited to be spending her newly discovered free time becoming a licensed pilot.  She grew up on military bases, watching aircraft fly by as a child, yearning to learn to fly one herself.  It is 40 years later, and with the help of Fly it Forward, Toni's dream of becoming a pilot has been rekindled.  She is retiring this year and will be devoting her time to pursuing her private pilot certificate - the timing couldn't be better!  In just a short essay, and some additional questions answered, Toni showed that she has what it takes and will be a great success.  

Toni wrote, "I think it is important to empower young women with the knowledge that with hard work and determination, they can follow their dreams, no matter how daunting their journey may appear."

Please congratulate Toni on earning this great award and visit back in the coming days to read her winning essay. 

Teen Flight Essay Contest: Ellan Kim - Clarksburg, MD
Upon graduating high school, Ellan plans to enter college and pursue a degree in the medical field.  By reading her essay, however, one would think she was a poet!  In her essay, Ellan mentioned how stressful applying to colleges and planning for her future can be.  For those twenty minutes of flight, all those worries flew away.  

"My mind and thoughts became clear as though flying was cleaning my brain," Ellan wrote.  "My unforgettable experience up in the sky gave me a clear vision for what I wanted in the future."

I'm sure many pilots can relate to Ellan's experience and we are happy that she will be given the gift of flight once again.  Congratulations, Ellan!  Please check back to read her award winning essay!

Award Cook-Out!
Did you make some new friends at Fly it Forward or are eager to meet our essay contest winners?  You're invited to a cookout at on Friday, May 11th at Hanger E7 at Frederick Municipal Airport to celebrate our Most Female Pilot Friendly Airport in the US award!  The food starts grilling at 5:00pm!  Thanks to Aviation Insurance Resources for hosting! 

The Week that Was

1,104. That's the number of girls and women who went on a flight during the Women Of Aviation Worldwide Week. 

Some pilots challenged one girl or woman to go on a first flight during Women Of Aviation Worldwide Week, others challenged themselves to take their first passenger for the occasion, and aviation friends got together and threw a big party for girls and women.
Whatever the method used, the results are certain: 92% of our survey respondents were amazed by the aviation community and would consider becoming involved at some level! Congratulations at doing such a great job at showing the true face of aviation to the public at large.

But that's not all, some of the first time flyers have contacted me asking where to get started to learn to fly. The "First To Solo" challenge is on! Who will win and in what country? Stay tune. It is going to get really exciting.

In Frederick, MD, Gonzales, LA, Port Lavaca, TX, as well as in Southern Ontario, Canada, getting together to celebrate Women Of Aviation Worldwide Week by introducing girls and women to flying has already become a tradition. But new groups formed this year in Oregon, Idaho, Wyoming, Quebec, and, of course, the Northwest Territories of Canada.

There, helicopter bush pilot, Karen Brazier, single handedly rallied the community and set a flight target that would place Yellowknife well above the 200 range. She and three of her colleagues flew helicopters for around 6 hours nearly non-stop. 421 girls and women took flight on March 10, which sets a new one day record and a new one week record. 

Pilots from seven nations participated to the English Channel event in a wide variety of aircraft. One special helicopter woman pilot flew across the English Channel in a one-of-the kind helicopter: Annette Lynton Mason. An actress, she also races car, rides horses, and share her life with Nick Mason, Pink Floyd's drummer. 

That's why our theme song for this year's video is "Learning to fly" by Pink Floyd. I invite you to take a look at some of the highlights and sights of this year's activities during Women Of Aviation Worldwide Week. 

Check out our 2012 Women Of Aviation Week video that shows what we are achieving together. 

But there is more. Click here to let Esther French share part of her trip in Europe with you. Want to check out what was going on in Yellowknife, NT, Canada? Click here. What about Frederick, MD, USA? Click here

Do not hesitate to share these videos with everyone you know and ask them to pass them on. We can't fly them all. Let's use our efforts to show girls and women everywhere what we are truly about.

While the 2012 Women Of Aviation Worldwide Week is now over, letting girls and women know that women do belong in aviation never stops. 

Throughout the year, any time you introduce a girl or woman to flying, anytime you give a speech to a mostly female crowd to let them know aviation's opportunities, do an interview on the subject, organize a "girl" event, etc., we want to reward you. 

That's why we have set up the WOAW VIP Club that lets you collect points for each activity performed. These points lead to earning collectible pins and may be to winning the "Spirit of Women Of Aviation Worldwide" award, as did Lesley Page of Oshawa, ON, Canada, in 2012.

Since the week of March 8 2010, the number of flights performed during Women Of Aviation Week has nearly doubled annually. 

To ensure continued growth, I have requested support in the most active countries at the organizational level. 

I am really excited to announce that Victoria Neuville, organizer extraordinaire of the Frederick Airport events, has accepted to become the WOAW U.S. Team Leader. 

She will be the point person in the U.S. and will assist anyone that wants to organize an event in the U.S. But, that's not all; everyone at the Frederick Airport knows how resourceful and creative she is. 

She will use all that smart, creativity, and resourcefulness to make sure that the United States continue to shine during Women Of Aviation Worldwide Week. 

Valentina Vladimirovna Tereshkova was born in western Russia on March 6. On June 16 1963, she was only 26 years old when she boarded the Vostok 6 space ship and became the first woman ever to fly in space. 

The 2013 Women Of Aviation Worldwide Week, March 4-10 2013, will honor this important milestone. Our 2013 theme is "Women and space" and we are inspired. 

To get the most current information, check out the website regularly and/or like us on Facebook.
With gratitude,

Mireille Goyer
Intl Team Leader

Friday, April 13, 2012

Mark your calendars!

The Women Fly it Forward essay contest winners will be announced Monday!

Thursday, April 12, 2012

Check out the Fly it Forward Podcast on AVWeb

April 9, 2012
Podcast: Female-Pilot-Friendly Yellowknife  
By Russ Niles, Editor-in-Chief

The second Women of Aviation Worldwide Week competition to see which airport community can give the most women and girls their first flight in a small aircraft was held a month ago, and the results are in. Organizer Mireille Goyer explains to AVweb's Russ Niles how Yellowknife, in Canada's Northwest Territories, unseated Frederick, Maryland for the title — and what it all means for aviation.  

Wednesday, April 11, 2012

Women Fly it Forward - The Video!

It is finally here - the Frederick Airport's Women Fly it Forward 2012 compilation video!  If you have 10 minutes to spare, or even if you don't, it is worth a watch!  Note:  Feel free to donate a new computer for my future video editing needs.  Thank you :o)

Monday, April 9, 2012

Holy Tailwind Batman!

Until next time, Detroit!
It's amazing what a tailwind can do for a cross country flight.  On the way up to PTK on Friday it took us 3.6 hours, with a 20-25 knot headwind.  On the way home, we had tailwinds as high as 65 knots, and made it home in 2.6 hours, exactly an hour less!  

The flight started at 9,500, and was smooth and speedy.  Soon, large cumulus clouds began to build and became hard to dodge.  I decided to then take it down to 7,500 so we wouldn't risk getting stuck above the clouds.  We lost 10 knots on our ground speed and gained a lot of bumps!  Shortly thereafter, we descended to 5,500 after there were reports it was a tad better.  It was, at times.  We lost another 10 knots of our once amazing tailwind, and I made sure to tighten my seat belt because a few bumps sent me out of my seat!  

Wind in Frederick was between 270 and 260 degrees, gusting into the 20s.  I at first was going to use runway 30, then switched to 23 for the added runway length, width and reduced obstacles (trees and a hill).  I haven't flown in strong crosswind conditions in the Cessna in quite sometime and was excited to have had set up a perfect slip on final.  Towards the end, though, I didn't flare as much and the landing could have been better.  Oh well!  I was thrilled to be on the ground after yet another bumpy flight, and exhausted from a busy but great weekend with family. 

Friday, April 6, 2012

A Flight to PTK!

It is Easter weekend, and it is time to visit Michigan and my family there.  I can't believe it has been since July that I have been to PTK, let alone Michigan!  We had a special guest this time, my friend, Andrea, would be joining us for the Easter holiday.  As much as we would have loved to fold her up and plop her in the Glasair, or maybe tie her to the wing, it was time to take the Cessna.  

I had promised Andrea a flight since I met her two years ago.  It hadn't happened until today.  She received her first flight with my friend, TJ in his Cirrus, at Fly it Forward last year.  This would be her first cross country in a small airplane and I am bummed the beginning wasn't much better.  We started of at 4,500 feet and boy was it turbulent.  I had trouble keeping altitude and heading.  So we went up to 6,500, not much better.  Finally, half way through the trip and with a nauseous friend in the back seat, we asked for a report and heard it was clear above 8,000.  The difference was night and day.  We enjoyed a smooth ride for the remainder of the trip.  It was such a clear day, we could see 50 miles!

The flight took us twice as long and with twice as much gas as it would have in the Glasair, but I finally got to fulfill a promise to a great friend and show her where I grew up.  Luckily, though, the flight home won't have as much of a headwind.  :)

Wednesday, April 4, 2012

FDK Airport: The Most Female Pilot Friendly Airport in the US!

More than 1,100 girls and women take flight for the first time during the 2012 WOAW week

April 4, 2012 in Latest News by Intl Team Leader

Pilots from 7 countries piloted ultra lights, homebuilts, single and multi-engine airplanes, as well as helicopters to introduce a total of 1,104 girls and women to the joys of flying during the second annual Women Of Aviation Worldwide Week held from March 5 to 11, 2012 – a 40% increase of flights over the preceding year.

In 1912, Harriet Quimby became the first woman pilot to fly across the English Channel and Hélène Dutrieu became the first woman to pilot a seaplane. To celebrate the centennial of these ground breaking achievements, a ground breaking aviation event was held on March 10, 2012.

he commemoration event involved simultaneous celebrations at two airports in two countries located in two time zones and pilots from multiple countries introducing girls and women to flying above the English Channel using aircraft of various categories. More than 100 pilots and female passengers took part of celebrations at England’s Headcorn Aerodrome and France’s Le Touquet Airport.

Meanwhile, all across North America, pilots joined in the celebration by taking girls and women from their community for their first flight in a small aircraft. 1,063 flight introductions were documented on March 10, 2012 alone.
Up and away in Yellowknife, NT, Canada In Yellowknife, Northwest Territories, Canada, 27 local businesses as well as the Canadian military rallied around helicopter bush pilot, Kirsten Brazier, to provide static displays as well as funds and logistics to allow four of Trinity Helicopters’ pilots – Kirsten Brazier, Megan Tyler, Derrick Robinson, and Robert Ferlisi – to take over 400 local girls and women on their first small aircraft flight and, in doing so, earned the Yellowknife Airport the coveted “Most Female-Pilot-Friendly Airport Worldwide” title.

Yes, there is a Fly It Forward CakeThe four pilots also took top positions in the “Most Dedicated Woman Pilot Worldwide” and “Most Supportive Male Pilot Worldwide” categories. These categories were a Canadian sweep with Lesley Page of Oshawa, Ontario, earning the second runner up position of the women category while Hubert Wren and Ron Hasman of Peterborough, Ontario, Canada, tie in the second runner up position of the male category.

Making a difference in one’s own community is an essential characteristic of Women Of Aviation Worldwide Week activities. In Frederick, Maryland, USA, pilot Victoria Neuville had to put pilots and passengers on a waiting list due to the overwhelming enthusiasm.

Nearly 60 more girls and women flew for the first time than did in 2011. The total, 244 introduction flights, help Frederick reestablish itself as Most Female-Pilot-Friendly Airport in the United States and earned it the first runner up position worldwide. Frederick was also home to the Most Supportive Flight Instructor Worldwide and first runner up in the category, Ron Herold and Richard Finati, respectively.

PIC Cathy M. & Catherine In Peterborough, Ontario, Canada, Cathy Montgomery, an ultra light flight instructor, hosted a Fly It Forward event. Pilots from around Southern Ontario introduced 213 girls and women to flying placing Peterborough in the second runner up position of the Most Female-Pilot-Friendly Airport Worldwide category. Peterborough was also home to two women friendly flight instructors, Cathy Montgomery and Leigh Ehrmann.

Overall, no airport had more women friendly flight instructors than Boise, Idaho, USA, did. Three of Ponderosa Aeroclub’s instructors, Jennifer Christiano, Tanis Partee, and Rick Laytham, earned a position on the podium in their respective women friendly flight instructor categories. Meanwhile, Worland, Wyoming, was home to the Most Dedicated Female Flight Instructor Worldwide, Mary Ann Dach.

The Spirit of the Women Of Aviation Worldwide award that rewards the woman that undertook the most women of aviation activities within the year was awarded to Lesley Page of Oshawa, Ontario, Canada, who not only personally offered many flights to girls and women throughout the year but also gave speeches in her community about Women Of Aviation and mentored several event organizers.

An early extreme weather season whipping lines of thunderstorms across southern Texas prevented Calhoun Flight Center from defending its various titles on both days of their 2-day planned event while seasonal weather kept Oregon grounded.

In partnership with Airbus and with the support of our generous sponsors, many prizes were awarded to participants. Four pilots each won a Sennheiser S1 Digital headset. One pilot won a one year subscription to Baron’s Quicklink Wings Elite Plan, while another won Barry Schiff’s entire collection of books. Other prizes included Aircraft Spruce gift cards, OSRM courses, Powder Puff t-shirts, and Windtee books. The winners of the FFPLUM flight coupons will soon take their first flight lesson in ultra lights while the winners of the writing and art contests will select a flight school and type of aircraft their first lesson.
“I so enjoyed the experience….I can’t wait to fly again,” said Karen, Frederick, Maryland, USA. In fact, 92% of our feedback survey respondents said that they would consider becoming involved in aviation as a result of the experience.
Congratulations to everyone who participated!
The 2013 Women Of Aviation Worldwide Week will take place from March 4 to March 10, 2013. The 2013 theme will be “Women and Space” as the world will celebrate 50 years of women in space.


Monday, April 2, 2012

SMAC Episode 21 with a Fly it Forward Recap!

In this episode of the Stuck Mic AvCast, we talked about a quick recap of the Women Fly It Forward event back on March 10th, 2012. Carl was attending the Planes, Trains, & Automobiles event at Plant City Airport, Florida during recording so you’ll enjoy a fun airplane sound seeing tour as airplanes takeoff in the background. Then Len finally got to share his Super Cub Alaska bush flying adventure stories from Summer 2010 and Winter 2012. Special thanks of our sponsor, Keel & Curley Winery for lending us their hangar at Plant City!

Sunday, April 1, 2012

A Weekend Flight to "Almost Heaven"

This was the first time that Bob and I were able to celebrate our anniversary the day of, and since it would be the last time we celebrated this anniversary we had to do it in style!  We met because of our love for flying, so of course we had to fly somewhere!  We needed just a short flight with some nature and adventure, a flight to Windwood Fly In Resort and hiking in Blackwater Falls State Park, fit us to a T!

Friday we took the 98NM flight to the Windwood Fly in Resort (WV62), a private airport and resort community.  Homes line the runway and a 17 room motel and restaurant are a quick walk behind them.  The paved and lighted runway is 3,000x40', with a high treeline on the approach end of runway 24.  The airport is surrounded by mountains, something to keep in mind for fast aircraft.  Also, we found the windsocks a bit hard to find.  We made it in just fine, though, and just before the rain started to fall.

It was an affordable weekend trip, our room was just $79 a night and they have an old Crown Victoria (dubbed the "cop car") that you can rent for $30 a day.  The motel had a bit of a 70s vibe but was very clean and everyone was as friendly as could be.  Just a note, they do ask for your insurance information if you fly in.  They need the company that your policy is through, as well as the policy number.  We were not told to expect this, so I assured her that we were insured for I am the one who my fiance gets his policy through!

The on field restaurant, Amelia's, is connected to the motel and serves breakfast, lunch and dinner.  Service was ultra friendly and quick.  The desserts are home cooked on site...yum!  You can check out my Yelp review of Amelia's here.

It poured all night long and Saturday morning our once lovely view of the runway and mountains was obscured by miles of fog.  Regardless of the rain that still came down, we hopped in the Crown Victoria around 10AM for the 20 minute drive to Blackwater Falls State Park.  On your way out from the resort, there will be a gas station with a Subway to your right.  We took a quick moment to pick up some subs to enjoy for lunch on our hike.  

I did quite a bit of searching to find the perfect hike for us at the park, we preferred a loop and a bit of a challenge.  I opted for the 9 1/2 mile Canaan Mountain Loop hike.  We did not know the adventure we were in for, however!  After one wrong turn we went two miles in the wrong direction, causing us to turn around and essentially add four miles to our hike!  The day was still young, though, and we enjoyed checking out the extra scenery.  As many reviews of this hike will warn you, it is very muddy and wet!  The showers the night before did not help matters any!  Besides when I have been rained on, this was the wettest hike I have ever been on. 
The most challenging part of the hike is when you start on the Lindy Run Trail, which is no longer maintained by the park service.  The streams you must jump over and find ways around only get wider and deeper.  At one point a stream that goes across the trail became 50 feet wide and at least four or five feet wide deep in the center.  We almost thought we would have to turn around, but found a more shallow, skinny, and less rapid part to wade across.  There was no avoiding getting wet this time!

Lindy Point was to be the highlight of the hike, with sweeping views of the valley and the rapids below, however it was almost completely fogged in.  We took a break there, snapping a few photos and having some munchies before retreating back to the woods away from the wind and the cold.  We'll have to visit again sometime to enjoy the view on a sunny day!

If it weren't for the dodging of streams, I would not call this hike very strenuous, but in the end we were very wet, sore and tired!  The streams made it quite an adventure, but a peaceful one, as we only saw one other person on our hike.  After 6 1/2 hours on the trails, we drove back to Windwood for hot showers and fresh clothes.  Later we enjoyed an amazing dinner and some glasses of wine at Muttley's Downtown Bar & Grill.

Sunday morning brought in lots of sun at Windwood and we got to enjoy the view while eating our breakfast and prepping to go.  The flight home  was sunny and clear until we got closer to FDK and ended up having to file IFR to get behind the overcast cloud layer.  

Windwood was a perfect way to celebrate our anniversary, and a place I would recommend for great hiking or a $100 Hamburger.  Supposedly the Pilots of America arrange a fly-out to Windwood in October of every year.  That may just have to go on our next "to do" list of flying adventures!

Click here for more pictures of this weekend's adventures!