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Missouri Breaks (Winifred 9S7) Flyin 21-23 June 2024

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9S7 -- Montana's Missouri Breaks
Breaks Flyin... Winifred 9S7
21-23 June 2024:


This first notification is just to hold the place on your calendar.

We will once again celebrate backcountry flying, the Missouri Breaks, and a small friendly cow-town in Central Montana where there are only friends, close knit community, and sometimes horses in the bar.

Details to follow, but in the interim....look at some of the great photos from Breaks Flyins of the past here on SC.org



Whops: I chopped off the photo credit. This beautiful shot is via: Steve and Laura Johnson
 
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That's a beautiful shot, Ralph! :) Yes I made it sticky!

sj
 
Breaks Flyin... Winifred 9S7
21-23 June 2024:


Below is partially rerun:
For First Time Attendees

Winifred is a town of about 150 august folks. After 100 plus years of stasis, Winifred is rapidly changing as we speak. A fellow pilot, and good friend of many of the attendees to this flyin,has donated 50 million dollars to refurbish/build on to the school. His instructions were simple..." Build in Winifred, the best school in Montana", and we are. My little house was one of the victims of the expansion, Melissa, who taught there for 38 years, would have had it no other way. Construction is complete. Come see what one super-generous (and highly successful) individual can do for the place where he was born and raised. This story is sort of what Winifred is all about... it is a village where time has not spoiled the folks who are hardworking, honest, generous, and make a living working off the land. We also have one great cafe, one filling station, one steak house, two churches and several bars. If it sounds too good to be true, just know I have had trouble believing it myself for the 45 years I have lived here. It is the way the world used to be, and we wish it still was.

The Winifred Hotel Suites ARE available at this time this year. If you want a hotel room rather than camping, NOW is the time to call and reserve. The number of rooms is limited. 406 462 5323

Airstrips: 9S7 (Winifred Strip) is turf in good condition about 150' X 4000' running basically 10º - 28º. The strip rises gently uphill from the east to about 1000' from the west end where it becomes level. There is an embankment on the east end where there are frequently downdrafts in strong west wends. If wind conditions allow, land planes east to west. Down hill landings aren't bad...just a little longer than you are used to. Use 122.9 as the CTAF.

Breaks strips: All 6 strips run generally E - W and are between 1200 - 3000'. The shortest is Woodhawk at ca. 1000' with some trees on each end. The longest is a private strip called Heller Bottom which is the only strip right on the Missouri River in the Breaks. While private, we are welcomed at Heller by Loren Smith the owner. Loren has also installed some picnic tables and a small one-roomed KOA type cabin (first come first served). Use 122.9 to announce in the backcountry and, while we consider these strips relative easy for backcountry fliers, a couple of airplanes have been bent in the breaks (no injuries). It is backcountry....always have your "A" game on and look to avoid surprises.


Photo of Woodhawk bottom in the Breaks...not Winifred. "Woodhawkers" were tough folks living in these breaks before settlement who would cut wood and sell it to the paddle boats bringing goods and people to FT. Benton which was as far as a boat could go into Montana in those days. Truly following Louis and Clark's path.

8zFBIRP.jpg

 
Thanks Ralph, I'de forgotten just how lush everything was last year. As they say if the creek doesn't rise or the smoke is not too heavy I will be see you in June.
Burro, Glenn
 
I'm super-excited to make it again this year! I had to bail last summer because the Smith River permit a friend drew too precedence but I'm pleased I'll be able to make it up there again for my birthday weekend. Not sure if I'll be able to stay the whole weekend but I had such a great time in 2022 that I've been excited about this for a while.

The Breaks are stunning from the river and ground; they're even more so from the air.
 
In case you are sitting on the fence about a visit to Winifred this year; starting in Sept., there are plans to pave a 65' strip on the north half of the runway. This will leave us 80' of sod to land on.....but, the Breaks flyin may have to be canceled for next year due to dirt work on the sod. Get here this year if you can. The Breaks are beautiful right now.... greening up very rapidly and we have had good moisture so far. After spending the winter in Arizona, it is fantastic to see all the wildlife here again. R
 
Glenn and I may be able to be there, out of Sheridan/Buffalo, Friday and Saturday. I would be so delighted to finally make one.
 
Well, the kind folks at the Shade Tree Cafe are looking forward to serving us a delicious breakfast on Friday, June 21! Ralph has OK'd the flight to Denton Montana, landing at the beautiful airstrip, 5U0, that runs just a block from the main street in Denton!

1717040571382.png


We are biased, but the flight from Winifred to Denton is spectacular, made even better with the historical narrative offered by Ralph as we fly the Missouri River to the Judith, then right to Denton. Who knows, you may like the food and the flight so much that you decide to go back over Saturday or Sunday!

Randy
 
If anyone is thinking of opting for a BasicMed exam at the Flyin, please advise. If so, please email me at greatplanesame@gmail.com. I preflight the BasicMed exams to make sure that there are no bad surprises, and that I am willing to sign the forms. We turn Ralph's home into a medical exam office for a couple of hours...thanks, Ralph!

Randy
 
If anyone is thinking of opting for a BasicMed exam at the Flyin, please advise. If so, please email me at greatplanesame@gmail.com. I preflight the BasicMed exams to make sure that there are no bad surprises, and that I am willing to sign the forms. We turn Ralph's home into a medical exam office for a couple of hours...thanks, Ralph!

Randy
Randy can you do mine on zoom? 😂

But seriously thank you for doing this. Everybody should have a basic med.

sj
 
That's a beautiful shot, Ralph! :) Yes I made it sticky!

sj
Steve, A couple of us in Idaho would love to do this trip…but we cant make the proposed June dates this year. Is this a trip we can put together using your itinerary later this summer or Fall ?
Thanks, Blake
 
Steve, A couple of us in Idaho would love to do this trip…but we cant make the proposed June dates this year. Is this a trip we can put together using your itinerary later this summer or Fall ?
Thanks, Blake
That is a question for Ralph.
 
Breaks Flyin... Winifred 9S7
21-23 June 2024:


This first notification is just to hold the place on your calendar.

We will once again celebrate backcountry flying, the Missouri Breaks, and a small friendly cow-town in Central Montana where there are only friends, close knit community, and sometimes horses in the bar.

Details to follow, but in the interim....look at some of the great photos from Breaks Flyins of the past here on SC.org



Whops: I chopped off the photo credit. This beautiful shot is via: Steve and Laura Johnson
Ralph, A couple of us in Idaho would love to do this trip…but we cant make the proposed June dates this year. Is this a trip we can put together using your itinerary later this summer or Fall ?
Thanks, Blake
 
Ralph, A couple of us in Idaho would love to do this trip…but we cant make the proposed June dates this year. Is this a trip we can put together using your itinerary later this summer or Fall ?
Thanks, Blake
Blake: This hangar is always open and late summer/fall can also be a beautiful time to see this country. We won't be serving meals in the hangar, but there is a great restaurant/bar down town (2 blocks away), great tiny Ma and Pa grocery, and a steak house open weekends. Fall can be a tough time to get into the hotel because of hunters, but camping at the airport is the option picked by most pilots. Call if you need more specific information.
 
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Heller Bottom (L51) Mowed: It got away from us last year but thanks to the Montana Pilots Assn. Pete Smith, Loren Smith and several others it is in great shape. This is the only strip right on the river. It is privately owned but open to us by Loren Smith. Thanks all.
Heller bottom mowed 2024.jpeg
 
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Really looking forward to chucking my responsibilities and throwing my to do list out the window next week and be Doc Randy’s wingman out to Winifred next week. hoping for decent weather for the Trip.
from the Past trips I had been aware of Norm Asbjornson with the town and his philanthropy to the town of Winifred. The past couple of weeks I have made it a point to learn more about him and what he has accomplished. What a fine human being he is. He really has taken it up a notch. I’m certain the saying leave the world a better place than you found it, must have been written about him
id invite you to read up on him too, it sure makes You stop and look around your own Winifred
Ralph any chance he will be in town that weekend. I’d like to shake his hand


https://www.montana.edu/news/9124/norm-asbjornson-s-small-town-roots-shaped-his-successg
jim
 
Yes Jim: He brings a whole new exponent to the concept of giving it back. It continues on each day with him as he attempts to think of other things and way he can help this and related communities. I don't believe he will be here for the flyin, but he pretty much does as he feels and we could get a surprise.

Things, are coming together for the flyin.... if you want a hotel room, I would call soon. R
 
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We have one good fellow sign up for a BasicMed exam, and if you are thinking about it please decide and let me know before 6/11! I'll be leaving MN with Jim Crane and will need to know how many supplies (rubber gloves :oops:) to pack! Email me at greatplanesame@gmail.com if you plan to have this provided at this terrific Flyin!

Doc Randy
 
brief PIREP: 6/17
Food is arranged, 9S7 Mowed, hangar will be swept; Come on !! We have had recent rains so it is turning very green again. For those suffering under the "heat dome", days here should be ca. 75F, nights in the 50's. There are scattered storms predicted Friday and Saturday but with little total precip. They are usually scattered enough to get around in aircraft, or don't pop up. We will have to watch to see if one of these strips happens to get hammered by one of these little storms. Don't land any of these backcountry strips wet....get the PIREP first. Winifred has better turf and should be OK. Call if there is any question..

We will have a donation bucket out for bar-b-que supper Friday.... no sponsors helped this year. It will be good ! Saturday into Lewistown for breakfast, then Saturday Hangar burgers in the evening.... est. $12 by the plate.

If you show up early Thursday and are able, we will find a broom to fit you. Frank's son, Garrett, is cooking several different kinds of Bar-B-Q with sides Thursday night at the Steak House.

Doc Randy has arranged a table in Denton for Friday morning breakfast. See his offer re: Basic Med exams above if you haven't.

There are some exciting Norman Asbjornson things happening at the airport over the next few years... I would like to have some discussions and appreciate your input.

We are short-handed this year, but some of you know more about this flyin than I do and we all fully enjoy asking and helping.
Safe flights from where ever you are... call if you need anything. Ralph 406 350 5487
 
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