Wednesday, October 2, 2019

Floatplane Tour over the Adirondacks

While I usually stick to my normal outdoor activities, occasionally I like to share other interesting activities.  This post does offer a lot of photos of scenery.

People may be surprised to know, I have a background in aviation.  While I have never made a living at flying, I hold numerous licenses and ratings, including a commercial pilot license.  I haven't been an active pilot for years, but naturally I am fascinated with flying.  With fall foliage coming along nicely, Puma had the desire to see our part of the Adirondacks from the air.  I won't miss the opportunity to take to the air in a small plane.  I quickly arranged a scenic floatplane ride.

The closest floatplane operator to our home in Tupper Lake is based about 20 miles south in Long Lake.  Helms Aero Service bases its planes in the middle of Long Lake on the namesake lake.  While they have a standard route they fly for the scenic tours, I spoke to the pilot and arranged for a flight that took us over our town of Tupper Lake.

I don't know if the pilot took interest in pleasing a fellow pilot or was just happy to fly a tour different from the daily routine, but he delivered far beyond my expectations with the tour.  He flew us over Tupper Lake and even made an effort to give us a view of our house.  The weather was nearly perfect with great visibility and the leaves seemed to be half way to peak color.  Below is a gallery of some of the photos from our flight.

Our flight wasn't the standard tour

Long Lake from the floatplane base

Our plane on a flight before ours

Previous flight taking off

Rocky shoreline after takeoff

Mountains come into view immediately

Long Lake shortly after takeoff

Lake Eaton with Long Lake in background

Endless Adirondack forest

Grampus Lake

I believe this is Big Brook

The Seward Range

Litchfield Castle on Lake Madeline

Not sure which lakes these are

Simon Pond

Tupper Lake

Our house is brown roof on right side

Looking over Tupper Lake.  Simon Pond on left
Tupper Lake in middle and Raquette Pond on right

Raquette River oxbow

Raquette River

Northern end of Long Lake

Santanoni Peak

Closing in on Long Lake

Touch down

Tomcat satisfied after a nice flight

Puma is happy despite a little queasiness 

For anyone visiting wild locales in mountainous lake country, I highly recommend a floatplane ride.  One of the reasons I enjoy hiking is for the views from a lofty perch.  From a small plane, the entire flight gives you that mountaintop view.   For those that read the blog for mountain activities, I still hope you enjoyed this post.

For more information on flights in this area of the Adirondacks, contact Helms Aero Service in Long Lake, NY at 518-624-3931.  I highly recommend them and the pilot was very friendly and made a great effort to point out the landmarks from the flight.

If you enjoyed this post, check out and "Like" Tomcat's Outdoor Adventures on Facebook.  I post photos there more frequently and revisit past adventures. 

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