The purpose of this trip was to expose us to some of the most difficult mountain airstrips that Idaho has to offer. These airstrips are representative of the types of challenges we will face while flying overseas. We are continually grateful to those of you who through prayer and through financial support make this possible. I literally can't wait to put these skills to use in Indonesia...to impact lives through providing medical help, access to education, and hope, as we physically demonstrate God's love to all people.
Allison Ranch (where we stayed the 3 nights) in the morning. The fog lifted each morning by the time we had had breakfast and were ready to go.
The view from the hill above Allison Ranch
The mighty Salmon River
Morning sun from the deck of the lodge at Allison Ranch
Did anybody notice the yellow spider on the flower?
Flying over Whitewater Ranch, one of the more challenging strips
Parked at the top of Whitewater Ranch. This airstrip has a 10% slope and is very narrow. To give you some perspective most highways in the United States don't go much over 7% slope. When you start getting around 5% on a highway you'll see all the warning signs for truckers, run-away truck ramps, etc. We have some airstrips overseas that have portions at 24% slope!
On one of our lunch breaks we suddenly saw this Bald Eagle cruising down the river looking for fish. I just happened to have the right lens on the camera to get the shot!
Wilson Bar. One of many airstrips with a "blind approach." You fly upriver a mile or two and then descend towards where you know the airstrip to be. You don't actually see the airstrip until you are 100 feet above landing as you make a 90 degree turn to line up with it. While we were measuring the airstrip here we saw a large herd of elk a few hundred yards up the mountainside.
Idaho Backcountry Pit-Stop
I found myself wondering if this amazing cornice would fall if we buzzed it with the airplane! Needless to say we didn't try it.
Luke making a picture-perfect touchdown at Allison Ranch after flying the "blind approach"
Take-off out of Allison Ranch
We were privileged to see many herds of Elk on the slopes above us. We even had some on the runway at Allison on our last day.