You are hereNovember/December 2005

November/December 2005

Winter Fun!

Winter is here, and for many, it comes time to either head to the snow or escape from the cold. If you want to enjoy the snow, this issue features Truckee, California, where the average snowfall is 17 feet. Or, to escape winter's clutches, you can head down to Amelia Island, Florida, where snow is unheard of. For a unique getaway, Manhattan offers a place where you can fly below the tops of skyscrapers and see the sights of the Big Apple from a different perspective. After landing, you will have no problem enjoying everything the city has to offer. On the other side of the country, we feature a strip that will make you forget the big city—Red Creek, Arizona. Here, saguaro cactus and red mountains dominate the landscape. So whether you bundle up and embrace winter or take off to warm up, enjoy yourself with these and other destinations in this issue.

Manhattan, New York

To true New Yorkers, Manhattan is “The City,” even if they are living elsewhere. They may have a valid point: Manhattan packs hundreds of the world’s finest attractions, shops, restaurants, and hotels onto one small island. From some of the finest museums in the world to fireworks in Chinatown, and the Concorde to mouth-watering burgers, staff author Michael Coyle has selected the crème de la crème of Manhattan’s offerings. As a bonus, his article also details flying along the Hudson River Corridor. This is the best way to take in the Big Apple—you’ll fly at window-height just west of The City’s towering skyscrapers for an experience you can’t get anywhere else.

Amelia Island Plantation, Florida

What better cure for the winter chills than a beach resort on an island off of sunny Florida? Jim Vance explores this moss-draped plantation getaway. You’ll be picked up from the airport, just minutes away, and dropped off in a 1,350-acre wonderland, with three golf courses, world-class tennis, a luxurious spa, and stretches of sand lining the Atlantic Ocean. Be sure to pack your appetite—there are six restaurants to pick from, ranging from beachside breakfast buffets to a lively aviation-themed nightspot. Whether you stay in a villa or a hotel room, plan on some quality relaxing. And don’t forget your bathing suit!

Truckee, California

When author Laurel Lippert tells people where she lives, they often quizzically respond with, “Turkey?” But Truckee is a wonderful place to enjoy winter. It’s at 5,900 ft. near Lake Tahoe, and the average winter snowfall is 17 feet! Although there have been recent improvements in town and at the ski resorts, Truckee retains its small-town charm. From skiing down a challenging hill to dogsledding through open meadows to just taking it easy in historic downtown, you’ll understand why it’s one of the coolest mountain towns around.

Cincinnati, Ohio

Explore historic Cincinnati with author Bonnie Manning. You’ll find a city enriched with history stemming from the Civil War, when the Underground Railroad passed through town, and earlier, when German immigrants settled a neighborhood called Over-the-Rhine. Those who can appreciate architecture will get their fill of art deco, from the airport’s terminal to the Cincinnati Museum Center at Union Terminal, which houses three museums and an Omnimax theater. Sports lovers can take in a Bengals football game or a Reds baseball game at stadiums along the Ohio River. Romantics can enjoy the river via themed cruises with views of Cincinnati’s rolling hills and illuminated skyline.

Natchitoches, Louisiana

The Old South—majestic live oaks draped in Spanish moss, centuries old Creole architecture, spicy Cajun cuisine, and gentle folks sipping iced tea as they rock on their front porch swing. It’s all here in Natchitoches, Louisiana. Join author Patricia Strutz as she travels to her mother’s friendly hometown in central Louisiana that is rich in history and largely unaltered by time. This region has preserved its historic buildings and deeply seated traditions of its residents. You may choose to tour historic plantations, take in the sights, smells, and sounds of the month long Christmas festival, or unwind on a scenic drive in the Kisatchie National Forest. And, be sure to bring your appetite. You will be welcomed with a mixture of piquant Cajun, savory Creole, and down-home Southern specialties. Enjoy the seafood gumbo, jambalaya, and pecan pie (you can always start your diet later). From the accommodating small-town airport to the friendly street vendors, Natchitoches is truly synonymous with Southern hospitality.

El Greco Restaurant, Milwaukee, Wisconsin

Seven years ago, the Gliatis family moved their restaurant business from Manhattan to the quieter environs on the outskirts of Milwaukee. Fortunately, they brought their culinary expertise—and their New York chef—with them. The result is what they tout as “big city dining with a small town atmosphere.” Overlooking the run-up area of Runway 22R at Milwaukee’s Timmerman Field, El Greco restaurant is a convenient fly-in restaurant in the Great Lakes region. Pilots from near and far fly here for great breakfasts, authentic Greek cuisine, USDA Choice steaks, and fresh seafood (yes, in Wisconsin). Their opening hours make planning your trip easy: 24 hours per day, 365 days per year.

Red Creek, Arizona

Few bush pilots know about Red Creek, an uncharted bush strip about 40 miles north of Phoenix. If you can handle this 1,400-ft. undulating strip tucked away in the Verde River Canyon, you’ll land at a great place to get away from it all. You can camp, hike, and explore a landscape dominated by saguaro cactus. To cool off, just walk to the nearby Verde River and wade in from the sandy riverbanks, or cast a line for carp, bass, or catfish. If you visit in the springtime, you might be lucky to see the desert erupt in a sea of color during the desert wildflowers’ brief bloom.

CubCrafters TOP CUB

For years, CubCrafters has been modifying and rebuilding Super Cubs to make them even better backcountry performers. Excitement among bush pilots was high when the company announced the new, 180-hp TOP CUB, an airplane based on the Super Cub design, but with numerous improvements from spinner to tail. Editor-in-chief John T. Kounis, spent three days at the CubCrafters’ factory test flying their new airplanes and touring the facilities. In his review of the TOP CUB, he discovers that the TOP CUB is all that it is claimed to be: like a Super Cub, only better.

Back to Basics – Getting Rusty

Statistics show that more than 30% of general aviation accidents occur during landing, and nearly all of those resulted from pilot error. Even if it’s been years since your check ride and your logbook fills more pages than Moby Dick, it’s still important to brush up on basic techniques. Author and flight instructor Cal Thomas reviews airspeed, altitude control, aiming points, and rudder coordination. Think twice before rolling your eyes, or you may become a statistic as well.