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Fall 2000

Celebrate Aviation's Diversity!

The destinations featured this Fall celebrate the diversity in aviation. You'll find everything from big city runways to small town airstrips, and from narrow canyon approaches to wide open expanses big enough for the Space Shuttle to land on. Whether you romance your sweetheart in Victoria, get away from it all in Nevada's Black Rock Desert, or take in some culture at the Oregon Shakespeare Festival, you will revel in the diversity of destinations in this issue.

Long Beach, California

Join editor John T. Kounis as he rediscovers Long Beach. Once home to movie studios and later an industrial port town, today's Long Beach has evolved into a great place for a weekend getaway. Attractions from the legendary Queen Mary to quiet gondola rides through the canals of Naples Island let you take in the nautical atmosphere of this beachside city. If you're heading to AOPA's Expo 2000 in Long Beach this October, this is the article you must read!

Ashland, Oregon

The Oregon Shakespeare Festival draws people from around the world to enjoy theater in the Siskiyou Mountains. This year, the Festival features performances of Twelfth Night, Hamlet, and The Taming of the Shrew. Author Mindy N. Steinman shows you how to best enjoy this "Disneyland for adults."

Glenwood Springs, Colorado

The soothing waters of this town in the Rockies have attracted famous people ranging from Doc Holliday, Al Capone, and Teddy Roosevelt. A short flight to Glenwood Springs brings you to a picturesque runway situated in a narrow canyon. After landing, head to the adjacent town to soak in its soothing waters, visit hidden caverns, or hike and fish in the Rocky Mountains.

Buffalo, Wyoming

At the base of the Big Horn Mountains on the historic Bozeman Trail, Buffalo lets you relive the Wild West. See cowboys tending to cattle like they have for more than a century, visit sites that played a key role in the taming of the West, or stay at a working dude ranch. After a weekend here, you'll understand why the bucking horse is Wyoming's trademark.

Lake Conchas, New Mexico

The large lake you see in the middle of New Mexico's barren desert is not a mirage. It is a man-made reservoir with a convenient 4,800-ft. airstrip right near the shore. Camping, fishing, hiking, and tranquility are the best aspects of Lake Conchas. Enjoying a 15-mile long lake after a short flight is a wonderful treat for pilots in a land-locked state.

Aerospace Heritage Trail, California

From Chuck Yeager's historic supersonic flight in the Bell XS-1 to the first Space Shuttle landing, many of aviation's firsts took place in the Antelope Valley. Anne Aldrich, Public Information Office for Lancaster, takes you on a tour starting at W.J. Fox Airfield and visiting historic museums, airfields, and monuments. You'll even get a chance to peek into the traditionally secret territory of the Skunk Works.

Victoria, British Columbia

The British founded Victoria in the 19th century and civilized it, making it their "home away from home." Today, the city retains its distinctly British flavor. If you equate romance with high tea, lush gardens, and horsedrawn carriages along the waterfront, then Victoria is your romantic haven.

Elma, Washington

When you fly to Elma, you head back to a simpler, less complicated time. Served by a small, hometown airstrip, the simple Landing Strip Restaurant serves tasty meals. Pilots have been known to fly hundreds of miles to enjoy the great cooking and hospitality of owners Vera and Stan Kanicky.

Black Rock Desert, Nevada

The wide expanses of the Great Basin make very large landing areas. So large, in fact, that the world land speed record was broken here. A major attraction is a whole lot of...nothing. The Black Rock Desert is one of the least inhabited regions in the lower 48 states. Its remoteness provides near-religious peace, easy camping, and natural hot springs.

Landing on Hardpan - Good Enough for the Space Shuttle, Good Enough for You

Huge expanses of desert that are many miles long may seem to be easy to land on. Yet, the lack of visual clues may deceive you. Author of the Black Rock Desert article, Greg Illes, explains the tricks necessary to safely operate on flat, featureless terrain.