Saturday, January 7, 2012

Frazier Lake Airpark, Jan. 7, 2012

My good friend Monty Groves, who I originally met through our local Sportster motorcycle group, has been after me for the past couple years to come to the monthly Open House @ Frazier Lake Airpark, just North of Hollister. Well, I finally made it! we've been having incredibly nice weather lately, so this was a great chance to get some two-wheeled therapy & airplane therapy all in one shot.

This is me, blocking your view of Monty's beautiful 1955 Cessna 180.

Frazier Lake is an interesting place. It's a public use, private airport, with one grass runway & one water runway. The hangars are stuffed with all sorts of vintage flyers, kit planes & a few "spam cans". I really blew it by not taking more pics of the aircraft in their hangars, as there are many great classic birds to see. I guess I'll just have to go back next month ;-)

Instead, I focused on visitor aircraft, a few locals that had been pushed out to the grass & the flying that was going on.

Not many training wheels to be found around here, mostly classic stick & rudder tail-draggers in the crowd. Closest is a great example of the Stinson 108.

Here's a good example of the mix of classic & kit-built airplanes that frequent or live at Frazier Lake.

This fully polished C-170A was gorgeous. Sure looks like a lot of work went into that shine.

In the kit-built group, this Sportsman was outstanding! The wing is polished, top & bottom and all the rivets are flush. This is one very slick little airplane & a lot of care & craftsmanship went into making it this nice.

The pilot of this Stinson demonstrates a perfect crosswind landing. There was a very stiff breeze blowing directly across the runway all day, making for some challenging landings, but the folks around here are pretty used to it.

One of the more unusual visitors was this very clean Bell Model 47. I had to look around for Klinger & Hawkeye.

Time for a few more of the action shots...

And a couple slightly less polluted picks of Monty's 180.

And for my horticulture friends; we did discuss potential maintenance practices for the grass runway. I know, I'm not usually a big fan of big expansive lawns, but this is different. This isn't somebody's wanna-be golf course front yard, this is a haven for grass-roots flying. Vintage aircraft, flying off of grass runways can really take you back in time. This is the kind of flying my folks were doing in the 40s & 50s.

For my flying friends; if you haven't made this trip yet you should. And for my fellow aviation junkie friends; Frazier Lake holds an Open House the 1st Saturday of every month. Come hang out & drool on airplanes with me sometime.


  1. Nice post, Matt. Enjoyed reading about and seeing some of the gorgeous planes that showed up at FLA. I tried to land twice, but got a little spooked by the crosswind. Guess I'd better practice my wheel landings!

  2. ps...Blue skies and tailwinds to your Mom. I attended the Gold Medal ceremony in DC last March. What an incredible experience. Those gals were a very special bunch!

  3. It was breezy alright. We'll have to catch up next time. The DC trip was one of the most emotional weeks of my life. I was on the floor for the ceremony, but 5 of my siblings were there too. Was a time I'll never forget.