Anything but an Asphalt Queen
The Cirrus SR22T. It’s a get-there airplane, an efficient business tool, a time machine, and a super-sweet adventure vehicle. Wait, what?!?! Adventure vehicle? Yes, and the adventures are not limited to ones accessed by a paved runway.
In the Pacific Northwest and Northern Rockies, the distances are vast, the scenery is awe-inspiring and the opportunities for adventure abound. Skiing, biking, hiking, camping, film festival-ing and the lake are all part of life in this corner of the world. Traveling from place to place can take the better part of a day, so flying an aircraft that decreases travel time by 75% over driving is essential to maximizing the time spent enjoying one’s destination.
One of the many benefits of aviation is the ability to get to places that are not easily accessible by car or in some cases, not at all. Numerous towns in Alaska would be cut-off from the outside world without the link that an aircraft provides. On a smaller more recreational level, there are lodges and camping spots throughout the Northern Rockies where access is limited to horse, boat or airplane. Though some of this secluded paradise is only reachable by the most capable backcountry aircraft equipped with tundra tires and flown by a steely bush pilot.
Northern Idaho offers a wide range of Cirrus-accessible territory. In a word association game played by virtually anyone outside of Idaho, “potato” would be the response to “Idaho.” But dig a little deeper into the land of spuds and a magical playground is revealed. Much of it served by well-maintained turf airstrips offering plane-side camping and a variety of services.
Airplane camping is a combination of car camping and backpacking. Like car camping, the vehicle gets packed with supplies and provides transportation to a remote location. Like backpacking, there is a concern for minimizing the weight of said supplies and the destinations are less crowded. But the freedom of Cirrus camping transcends any other kind of camping.
The combination of a large useful load and a powerful engine up front provides plenty of space for supplies as well as a speedy get-away vehicle. In just over an hour, I can leave the hustle of Seattle city-life behind and start enjoying the simplicity of mountain-life while setting up my tent between the wing and the horizontal stabilizer. S’mores anyone?
Taking the Cirrus off-pavement is a blast! Fold the back seats down, toss in a bike and camping equipment and take off in search of adventure! Embracing the opportunity to explore new places and experience a different side of aviation can re-kindle the passion that fueled the desire to learn to fly in the first place. As Amelia Earhart quipped: “Adventure is worthwhile in itself.”
This post was written by Cirrus Aircraft Regional Sales Director, Ivy McIver. Ivy is based out of Seattle, WA and covers our Pacific Northwest territory.