Off-airport operations

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Airports were created for a reason: They provide a smooth and predictable surface for aircraft to land without unduly taxing wheels, tires, landing gear, and/or propellers. But airports sometimes don't exist where we like to go, which is the beauty of it. This makes landing at sites that present the most suitable surface conditions necessary. The idea of landing and taking off from a completely unimproved surface presents many challenges, ranging from whether your tires will actually roll on the surface without flipping the aircraft, to whether the site is large enough to allow a safe landing AND takeoff. That last part is really critical.

Guide to landing off-airport

Mike Vivion, long time BCP contributor and even longer time Master CFI with 30 years of working pilot's experience in Alaska, put together an in-depth Guide to Landing Off-Airport, which walks the would-be bush pilot through honing their skills for methodically evaluating sites.

Additionally, the Alaska Region FAAST team has put together a guide to off-airport ops too.

If you have feedback on the accuracy or legitimacy of this entry, or would like to add more information, join the discussion below or email to volunteer your input.

Here we attribute

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While this knowledge base is a compilation of information from various sources, some official in nature, it is not a recognized or acredited source of aviation training information, and thus should be considered entertainment. Please consult a FAA-certificated flight instructor or mechanic prior to putting any information found here into practice.