Classic aircraft tour slated for Pacific Northwest

The skies over the Pacific Northwest will be filled with classic aircraft July 16-21 as dozens of pilots take part in the Oregon Antique & Classic Aircraft Club Air Tour.

The tour begins at Cottage Grove Airport (61S) in Oregon. It focuses on family adventure and fun activities, includes opportunities to ride in biplanes at Florence, an 80-mile jet-boat trip at Gold Beach retracing the initial mail-boat journey up the Rogue River, followed by a visit to the steam trains of Mt. Shasta in Northern California.

Golden Age pilot Tex Rankin is credited with starting the tour. The first one, dubbed the Pacific Northwest Tour, was held in 1930 at Pearson Field near Portland, Ore., and boasted 35 planes flying 2,765 miles and visiting 22 cities.

The tours were halted in 1939 as America prepared for war, then resurrected by the Oregon Antique & Classic Aircraft Club in 1984. Since then, the tours have been held biennially on even-numbered years.

The tours are open to members for $30 per person (children under 16 are free). Non-members can join the club for a $15 fee paid at time of registration. 

Tour participants come from Oregon, Idaho, California, Washington, Nevada and points beyond.  Participants may either camp beside their planes or make arrangements for offsite lodging. 

For more information call Rich Waldren at 503-538-7575. For a registration packet call Patricia Clifton at 541-942-5967.

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