July 1st through 4th
Late word received from club president Peter Lubig and 2013 convention director Andy Seligson is that Troy Hamon, author of the book 14 Days to Alaska, will be our convention keynote speaker.
Troy spent years working as a field scientist in Southwest Alaska, often being dropped off in remote places by bush pilots. Eventually, he decided he wanted to learn to fly himself. Finding no planes to rent in King Salmon, Alaska, he bought one of his own, sight unseen, rounded up an enthusiastic instructor (his brother) and set off to learn.
He recorded the journey, both the learning and the traveling, and has since continued to fly the venerable white with red Piper Tri-Pacer N624A, using it to transport family, go moose and caribou hunting, and gain a grander perspective from which to enjoy the beauty of Alaska, the Last Frontier.
Troy then wrote the book about the trip and his learning experience. Flying a small plane to Alaska is an adventure many pilots only dream of, but one several members of our club have enjoyed, some more than once, and many for our convention in 2001. But they were experienced pilots. Not Troy.
In 2008, the author, a student pilot, and his brother, a flight instructor, embarked on this adventure in an airplane old enough to be their mother.
On their journey, they examined how to fit twelve feet eight inches worth of grown men into one of the smallest cockpits on earth — for as many as eight hours a day. They visited places they had planned on going, to see friends and relatives, and made unintended stops in places they hadn’t ever heard of. They waited out weather, waited on maintenance, and wrapped the whirlwind of learning to fly into one of the grandest cross-country trips imaginable.
In the end, they covered in two weeks what takes commercial air carriers only a few hours to accomplish — but they had a lot more fun — and a much better view.
Not only is the club excited to have Troy for a guest speaker, but Troy is excited as well. “I would love to be a part of the convention,” he said.
This information was also published in the March/April 2013 issue of the Short Wing Piper News.