Wed, 25 Oct 2023
at Heath Canyon Airport,
I flew in here in about 1994 doing a CAP border recce. I have to say it was the scariest thing I'd ever been a part of in civil aviation. The PIC "Dave" had been there multiple times before. The brush along the sides of the runway was so high that a low wing plane would not have been able to land there. They said it was 30 feet wide,but it was more like 10-15 feet wide. We landed to the NW, uphill. After landing we taxied back and shut down. The treat about this place was that the owner had a one table "restaurant" at the bottom. He came out and fixed us lunch.The owner apparently used to work as a geologist right across the border.
The takeoff was rather interesting. It took almost full power to taxi up to the top of the hill. We prepped for a SE departure, Short Field flaps (C-172/180hp) held the brakes, full power. The upper portion of the runway (RY11 I think) was flat, with what seemed like a precipitous drop off after about 500'. The C172 basically just flew off the edge and kept flying. A sharp left to stay inside US airspace and we were off!
I never went back, but I will also never forget it. All the rest of the airports we landed at that trip were easy in comparison.
Im sorry to see it closed, now with 4000 more hours than I had then (150 hours then) I'd definitely try it again.The food was pretty good too.
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