With the pandemic sweeping our nation and our world, we wanted to turn our attention to the thing that brings us all here to begin with, our community and our airplanes.
You’ll notice that very little of our issue covers the effects of the coronavirus on aviation, though that remains overwhelmingly the biggest story in the world and in our little aviation niche, too.
When we announced last month that we would be putting together special features dedicated in part to the strength of the people like you and me who fly small planes, the response was enormous. The idea, which resonated strongly with our readers, was not so much to document the effects of the novel coronavirus but to highlight the resilience of the people who fly small planes in the face of that virus. So we wanted to share with you the faces, the stories and the strength (and, okay, the planes) of our readers. We think that you will find them as moving and inspirational as we have. (SCROLL DOWN TO MEET OUR READERS AND READ THEIR STORIES)
Tobias Burch And Jackie Steiner
This couple had their wedding plans altered because of COVID-19, but they’re hopeful for 2021.
Their Plane: Carbon Cub EX-2
His Ratings: Private Pilot
Favorite Plane: Carbon Cub EX-2 (Tobias)
Home Airport: Brown Field, San Diego
Favorite Destination: Big Bar Strip, Hells Canyon
His Story: While in British Columbia, Tobias, who is from Switzerland, chanced upon a de Havilland Beaver docked at a resort. He got a scenic flight, but wound up getting to do some flying, too, and he was hooked. After getting his FAA Private Pilot rating, Tobias did bush plane training in Alaska in 2015. It wasn’t long before he got hooked on the backcountry, found work in the U.S.A., and moved here full time.
Flying In Pandemic Times: The couple had plans to fly the length of the Americas, from Alaska to Argentina, in their Carbon Cub EX-2. The trip was going to get underway in July just after Oshkosh, but the adventure, they told us, has now been postponed. The new date is March of 2021. Jackie reports that she is “happier than ever to go on backcountry flying adventures,” where she can do two things she loves, camping and being in nature. “It’s a great way to decompress,” she says, “and the Carbon Cub is the right machine for the mission!”