Called by many different names but one thing they all have in common is they are fun to fly. Gyroplanes have been around since the 1920-30s but few people are really familiar with them. With the recent Sports Pilot’s License in the US and a growing number of people interested in the hobby the Gyrocopter is gaining in popularity all over the country. The advantages of the Autogyro is its ability for short takeoffs and even shorter landings. Unlike a helicopter it cannot hover but it can fly very slowly giving the pilot more time to take in the landscape below. When high winds make some fixed wing aircraft a challenge to fly, the Gyroplane’s rotary wing is much less effected. Many pilots actually enjoy flying in windy conditions which means even shorter takeoffs, slower flying, feather like descents and landings.
Louisiana has its share of waterways, swamps and landmarks to explore from the air. During the crawfish season fishermen can be seen running their nets in the many crawfish ponds around the state. Special boats, powered by hydraulics, are built just for crawfishing. When necessary they can actually cross the small levees built to separate the ponds.
Flying a Gyro is fun but when you have a friend flying alongside it’s even better. A nice day with a short flight across the Atchafalaya River to a crop duster’s airfield.
This fly-in was held at Louisiana Regional Airport in Gonzales, Louisiana. The airport is situated near the Mississippi River which is lined with plants and loaded with river traffic. Big tugs pushing multiple barges can be seen from the banks but the view from above is a sight to see. Come along for the ride.
Organizations such as the PRA – Popular Rotocraft Association – brings rotorcraft pilots and those interested in the spot together to exchange ideas and information. The Pelican State Rotor Club - PRA20 Chapter – covers all of Louisiana, East Texas, Western Mississippi and Southern Arkansas. For more information on the next meeting or fly-in go to our PRA20 schedule page. Fly-ins are not only fun and exciting but a place to meet lots of new friends, make plans to attend one near you.