Roaring 20s: 1928 plane gives view of Carson City (video)

Retired US Navy serviceman Bill Gerow takes a picture with his smartphone out the window of the Ford Tri-Motor Thursday.

Retired US Navy serviceman Bill Gerow takes a picture with his smartphone out the window of the Ford Tri-Motor Thursday.

If you have never seen Carson City from the sky, it’s something to put on your bucket list.

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The Experimental Aircraft Association brought a 1928 Ford Tri-Motor airplane to the Carson City Airport and Nevada Appeal photographer, Brad Coman, and I got the chance to go up.

The 50-foot aircraft looked massive, as we approached it, with its dual propeller engines sitting on the front. The cabin held 12 seats, including the pilot and co-pilot, and looked like it came out of the 20s with wood interior and small curtains hanging on the windows.

After getting our briefing from our pilot, Bill Thacker, we boarded the plane.

Getting in was a little difficult, as the narrow aisle was only a few inches wide, however each seat guaranteed us spectacular views. As Thacker described it, we each got a window and aisle seat all in one.

Then we were off.

One propeller started, then the second as we taxied down the airport runway, the cabin filling with a low rumble from the propellers.

Soon spectacular views filled the windows.

As we went higher into the air, the aircraft cruised along the clouds, giving us postcard-worthy pictures of the rolling mountains and valleys.

It wasn’t until we were in the air I remembered I wasn’t really fond of flying, but luckily the plane wasn’t too shaky and the view was just breathtaking so it made it all worth it.

It was a beautiful day, turquoise blue skies with just a few clouds scattered about. We could see all of Carson City and Mound House from our seats. Our plane flew east toward Dayton and circled back around to the capital city, flying across Highway 50.

When we weren’t getting photos of the view, Brad and I played a game, trying to pinpoint different Carson landmarks — the high school, elementary schools, the Sheriff’s Office and more.

In all, the flight was only about 15 or 20 minutes long, but that was plenty. We cruised through the clouds, the plane only reaching about 80 miles per hour before gliding back to the ground.

“Welcome to San Francisco, hope you enjoyed your flight,” Thacker joked as we landed.

The plane flew smoothly and the experience was once in a lifetime. I had a newfound appreciation for this little city after looking at it from above, appreciating the beauty that surrounds Carson.

And anyone can go up in the plane, the Tri-Motor will be at the Carson City Airport through Sunday from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Flights can be purchased for $75 for a 20- to 25-minute flight. Flights will leave as seats are filled.

To purchase a ticket, visit the lobby area at the airport to get checked in.


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