Inside the envelope, Patrick Smith shows how he preflights the bag by checking the control lines and parachute valve, the 25-foot bull’s eye at the very top of the balloon. This valve can be used to help control the balloon in the event of a big gust of wind.
A 1954 Beech 18 on floats, resplendent in white with nautical blue trim, splashes around in Crane Lake, Minnesota, the site of Scott’s Resort Seaplane Base.
Volunteer pilot Ray Reher loads a box of blood products into his Mooney Ovation, headed for Flagstaff, Arizona.
Joe Howley, founder and President of Patient Airlift Services (PALS), flies an Phenom 300E east of Flordia’s Melbourne International Airport, home of Embraer’s Executive Jet division.
Dave Powell pilots his Cessna 170B over one of five airstrips located at Bank’s Ranch in the Ozark Mountains in northwest Arkansas.
Author and light sport pilot Jacqueline Ruiz poses near a poster promoting the inaugural Latinas in Aviation global festival that featured 15 of the 22 pioneering Hispanic women Ruiz profiled in the 2020 book Latinas in Aviation.
Ben Templeton, 18, flew a Piper J-3 Cub to 48 states to help make youth aware of aviation careers and opportunities.
U.S. Army Chief Warrant Officer 2 Evan Cole shows Evelyn Farrell, 5, around the cockpit of a Boeing Apache AH-64E attack helicopter on display at Boeing Plaza during EAA AirVenture in Oshkosh, Wisconsin.
Michael Schneider loads kittens into his Piper Turbo Saratoga SP. Later that week he flew a personal record of 51 cats and kittens to adoption centers in the Northeast.
Tom Haines, AOPA senior vice president of media, communications, and outreach, test flies Cirrus Aircraft’s latest upgrade to the SF50 Vision Jet over the rolling landscape of West Virginia.
Maverick, a 6-year-old golden retriever who loves to fly, poses in front of owner/best-friend Andrew McNamara’s Piper Super Cub.
AOPA Editor at Large Dave Hirschman and his brother Harry fly across the country, from Las Vegas to Maryland, in a Lockwood AirCam at sunrise.
Shinji Maeda, the self-described one-eyed pilot who completed a 43-day around-the-world flight in a 1963 Beechcraft Bonanza, flies in formation with mentor and fellow circumnavigator Adrian Eichhorn.
A Grumman Super Widgeon and a Piaggio Gull go head-to-head in a series of performance contests, including a wide-open drag race.
A North American T–6 Texan starts up on a snowy ramp at Casper Natrona County International Airport in Wyoming.
AOPA Editor at Large Dave Hirschman flies the King Cub, a Piper Super Cub fitted with a 210-horsepower Lycoming IO-390 engine. Photo by Chris Rose.
Stay tuned for more exciting stories and mind-blowing visuals in 2022. Happy New Year!