You are hereMay/June 2016
Summer is in full swing and it’s time to dream of travel with your airplane. The biggest dream of all is to fly yourself around the world, and we’ve got an exclusive story by Robert DeLaurentis (aka the Zen Pilot) about his around-the-world trip in his Piper Meridian, which included plenty of thrills… both the wanted and unwanted kind. This year marks the 100th anniversary of the National Park Service, and we cover three NPS units: Cedar Breaks National Monument, Zion National Park, and Crater Lake National Park. Each of these locations offers its own spectacular and unique scenery. There’s no better time than now to get out there and explore your public lands!
Around the World with the Zen Pilot
Have you ever dreamed of flying yourself around the world in your own airplane? Robert DeLaurentis has always seen aviation as a way to explore his surroundings. Like many pilots, he moved up to more capable aircraft as he added hours and experience to his logbook and personal history. He flew around the Caribbean, into Alaska, and down to Central America. He explored South Africa and Italy. Finally, the dream of an around-the-world flight began to take hold of him. In this special Pilot Getaways article, DeLaurentis relates many of the exhilarating and terrifying moments he experienced during his three-month journey in the summer of 2015. Despite months of detailed preparation, the trip started with a balky landing gear, a possible omen. In Oman, DeLaurentis was arrested for walking 50 feet without an escort and finally obtained the assistance of the U.S. Embassy to extricate him from a “kangaroo court.” Other emergencies included a loss of vital fuel on one leg, mistakenly taking off from a too-short runway, and an engine failure over the Strait of Malacca. Each of these emergencies and many other remarkable experiences related in the story, taught DeLaurentis valuable lessons—lessons that apply to all pilots, even if you’re just making a local flight.
Cedar City, Utah
Fly to Cedar City for easy access to classic National Park Service scenery, cool, high-elevation hiking opportunities, and some of America’s best outdoor Shakespearean theatre. Managing Editor Crista V. Worthy takes you to Cedar Breaks National Monument, where you can see the same types of pink sandstone hoodoos you’ll find at Bryce Canyon National Park, but without the crowds of summer tourists. Walk through wildflower-filled meadows and then stand at the edge of the “amphitheater” and watch the formations glow at sunset. You can camp at Cedar Breaks or head back into town for the Tony award-winning Utah Shakespeare Festival, which presents matinee and evening performances of Shakespearean and modern plays in repertory. See the brand-new Englestad Shakespeare Theatre, an outdoor replica of Shakespeare’s Globe Theatre, which opened in May 2016. Then head south to Zion National Park, where iconic, monumental sandstone monoliths rise over a thousand feet above the narrow valley. Challenge yourself to climb the narrow path to Angel’s Landing, where you’ll be rewarded with panoramic views of Zion, or hike into The Narrows, a classic slot canyon carved by the Virgin River. Your trip can also include a visit to the studio of famed Western artist Maynard Dixon and a stay at a luxury resort just outside the park that offers horseback riding and elegant cuisine. Or stop for some famous pies on your way around the loop drive to Brian Head resort. This little corner of southwest Utah offers everything you need for a classic summer vacation.
Dahlonega & Helen, Georgia
Tucked into the North Georgia Mountains are two quaint towns untouched by big-city hustle and stress: Dahlonega (pronounced Da-LON-eh-ga) and Helen. Our Atlanta-based author Kristy Mackaben shares how Dahlonega got its start with one of the country’s first gold rushes in 1829. Even today, gold factors into Dahlonega’s identity with local gold and gem mining operations and the annual “Gold Rush Days” in October. You can also enjoy wine tasting and a Tuscan-themed winery and restaurant overlooking the Chattahoochee National Forest. Helen’s buildings sport a Bavarian-theme, so it’s only fitting that Helen boasts one of the South’s best Oktoberfests. Other nearby activities include “shooting the Hooch,” white-water rafting on the Chattahoochee River. Other ways to play near the river include a zip line, ropes course, and climbing wall. Just outside of town, outdoor adventures abound. The area is full of hiking trails, some of which lead to waterfalls, including the tallest waterfall in Georgia. As you might expect, you’ll find several good German restaurants in Helen, while Dahlonega offers a special chuck wagon dinner and a café that serves healthy fare including a dynamite chicken and peach salad. When it’s time to turn in, choose between a B&B built on an old gold mine or several spa resorts near the river or state park. Dahlonega and Helen are the perfect way to escape the city and enjoy a relaxing weekend.
Mt. Shasta to Crater Lake, California & Oregon
In the July/August 2015 issue, we covered the southern half of the 500-mile Volcanic Legacy Scenic Byway, from Lake Almador to Burney Falls. For this issue, Managing Editor Crista V. Worthy continues the journey with the northern half of this route, from the Mt. Shasta area up to Crater Lake. California’s northeastern corner is dominated by the 14,162-foot dormant volcano Mt. Shasta, which towers 10,000 feet above the surrounding terrain and can be seen from 150 miles away on a clear day. Your adventure can include walking behind a waterfall, fishing the Sacramento River, climbing Mt. Shasta, and drinking pure water from local springs. Along the way, you’ll visit barren lava flows that contrast with dense green stands of pine, cedar, and fir. See innumerable flocks of water birds in several wildlife refuges, paddle a canoe out into Upper Klamath Lake, where you can fish, play hide-and-seek among the reeds, or see even more birds. The crown jewel of the Volcanic Legacy Scenic Byway is the incomparable Crater Lake, which appears like a giant sapphire, surrounded by a setting of volcanic cliffs. Stay in the Crater Lake Lodge, opened in 1915. Its massive stone fireplace, location, and rustic 1920s atmosphere place it among the iconic NPS lodges. What better place to celebrate the 100th anniversary of the National Park Service?
Deep Vein Thrombosis & Pulmonary Embolism – Understanding the Dangers of Long Flights
As many of our readers know, Pilot Getaways Editor and co-founder John T. Kounis passed away suddenly last summer from a massive pulmonary embolism (PE) caused by Deep Vein Thrombosis (DVT), a few weeks after he returned from ferrying a Cessna 185 solo across the Pacific Ocean. The voyage from Monterey, Calif., to Brunei took 64 flight hours. In this article, senior AME Brent Blue explains what DVT is and how a PE can form. This is vital information for all pilots and airline passengers, as long flights increase your risk. Dr. Blue also provides other risk factors and explains easy steps you should take on any long flight to prevent yourself or your loved ones from developing a DVT and possibly suffering a PE.