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Flight School Recommendations for Western Washington


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I live in Western Washington on the Kitsap peninsula, which is an hour drive to Seattle. My question is obvious. Are there any of you out there that have any good recommendations for my area? Sad to say, the only one I know about is SSH in Arlington, Wa. I would really like to follow through with my dream of flying and do it the Rotorcraft way. I have already spun myself around these forums for awhile, and decided I should register so I could ask questions and all the rest. I am willing to relocate, but would need to stay working as I don't have the luxury of being a full-time student. Thanks for anything any of you can give me in advance and I look forward to helping out in any way I can on these forums in the very near future. :)

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Glacier Aviation, in Olympia. Great people and great facilities. I rented one of their planes a couple of times awhile ago... and their helo outfit was topnotch. I'd recommend them.

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  • 11 months later...

Hi Ace,

I've had a couple of people recommend Hillsboro in Oregon--one fixed wing and one RW pilot. also heard some groaning about the winter weather in the northwest screwing up training or time-building. Let me know what you find out...I'm planning on starting in the summer, either in Washington, Oregon, or Hawaii.

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I am a current CFII at Classic Helicopter Corp. If you have any questions please let me know. I also did all of my training with Classic.

 

CROOK

 

Hi Crook,

How does Seattle weather affect flight training? Spend a lot of days grounded b/c of IMC? Does that change when you're working on instrument (ie, will you take an instrument student up in real IMC)? How about once you are instructing--do you think you're accruing time more slowly than a CFI in Arizona, Utah, or Eastern Oregon who's getting 300+ clear days?

thanks,

--c

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  • 2 months later...

Glacier Aviation is a great school. Mike the owner is a really nice guy and will take time to talk with you one on one. When I attended they had a DPE on site named Mike Everette which was one of the nicest people I have met in the aviation community and has been flying Robinsons for a long time. I only went there for about 3 months to do my CFI and my CFII and probably got grounded twice. I'm sure during the winter is worse but I got done and outta there right before that bad weather was coming. Good luck with your choice.

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Is Mike E still there? I did my ppl with him and am looking may need to go there for my comm ride if the planets do not align here in SLC. He is a good guy and I learned a ton from him. His emergency procedures flight was the best

Shane

I will have to also agree that Glacier is a great school. I finished my cfi up at Glacier in Feb. of this year and I have to say that everything was as promised. Mike E. is still there as for as I know and hes a great instructor, pilot and you will learn alot from him.

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I PM'd you, but check out Peninsula Helicopters NW in Bremerton, it's new last year. Sister school to Helicopters NW at Boeing Field in Seattle and also in Tacoma. Website is www.peninsulahelicoptersnw.com

Small and personalized with owner/mechanic and plenty of CFIs and a/c (R22, R44).

 

I am a super happy student at Heli NW in Seattle.

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Does anyone know anything about Glacier Aviation helicopter training at Burlington/Skagit regional airport? I live in BC and am planning to do the Canadian CPL but have dual citizenship and the cost is about 50% less in the US so would like to get some training in Washington too.

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Does anyone know anything about Glacier Aviation helicopter training at Burlington/Skagit regional airport? I live in BC and am planning to do the Canadian CPL but have dual citizenship and the cost is about 50% less in the US so would like to get some training in Washington too.

 

In 2005 they were still up in Skagit. I never went there. I think that one is really small with one or two instructors. That's all I know. Later.

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  • 2 weeks later...
I PM'd you, but check out Peninsula Helicopters NW in Bremerton, it's new last year. Sister school to Helicopters NW at Boeing Field in Seattle and also in Tacoma. Website is www.peninsulahelicoptersnw.com

Small and personalized with owner/mechanic and plenty of CFIs and a/c (R22, R44).

 

I am a super happy student at Heli NW in Seattle.

 

 

Heligirl... I met Doug who is an instructor today at Heli NW down at BFI. Seems like a nice guy and was informative about my questions I asked him. There was a student there too who I talked to and he is happy there. Also I live only 4 miles from BFI and my current work is even closer so one of the 2 schools there would be super convenient.

 

My question to you is did Heli NW help you get a CFI job or are you still in training for your CFI rating? I have narrowed my school selection down to Heli NW, Airwork LLC in Auburn, and possibly Classic at BFI but Classic so far has not returned my calls and every time I have asked to speak with someone about their training the receptionist says no one is available at this time. Classic seems to me to be the cold, corporate (impersonal) type of operation. I have also considered Glacier but I don't want to have to drive to OLM 3 or 4 times a week.

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Heligirl... I met Doug who is an instructor today at Heli NW down at BFI. Seems like a nice guy and was informative about my questions I asked him. There was a student there too who I talked to and he is happy there. Also I live only 4 miles from BFI and my current work is even closer so one of the 2 schools there would be super convenient.

 

My question to you is did Heli NW help you get a CFI job or are you still in training for your CFI rating? I have narrowed my school selection down to Heli NW, Airwork LLC in Auburn, and possibly Classic at BFI but Classic so far has not returned my calls and every time I have asked to speak with someone about their training the receptionist says no one is available at this time. Classic seems to me to be the cold, corporate (impersonal) type of operation. I have also considered Glacier but I don't want to have to drive to OLM 3 or 4 times a week.

 

 

I'm still training at Heli NW, in the homestretch for my PPL then on to my instrument-CPL-CFI. It's a long road! Doug is my instructor, he's great, I love it there. I will give you the same advice as everyone else probably already has and that's to choose the school where you feel most comfortable, bottom line. Driving to OLM a few days a week will be worth it if you really clicked with the people and program there. Glacier seems to get rave reviews everywhere I go so I wouldn't rule them out. I live out near Snoqualmie Pass so it was just too far for me to consider. :( I also have good friends who are Classic alum and I know the folks up there too, it's a good school. They are big but that can be good thing too, for availability especially. It's all about where you're most comfortable. Sorry they didn't return your calls, keep trying. Remember 'tis the season; schools are crazy busy replacing their 1000hr CFIs that left for summer turbine gigs and also fielding calls and visits from everyone under the sun who thinks it would be great to learn to fly this summer. SO MANY people walk through the door and call on the phone and the schools never hear back from 99% of them and they expect this. Be ridiculously persistent while on your information quest, esp this time of year. Definitely consider Heli NW, it's tiny but good. Since you live in the neighborhood though, make sure you get into Classic before you choose since it sounds like BFI would be the easiest. They have a good program, and 141 if you want to go that route too! I don't know much about Airwork but I fly at Auburn a lot for training, it's a great little airport. Could be great 1 on 1 training, I think they're small too. Take your time to really get to know the schools before you jump in, it will make your life so much happier in the end. You HAVE to get along well with your CFI or it will be ruined for you, so try to meet them all!

 

Feel free to PM me if you want any more info, I'm definitely around!

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