Have you ever wanted to see our beautiful mountains from the air? To fly over the peaks and valleys, and see familiar landmarks and towns from a bird’s eye view? That’s actually easier than it sounds, as you can easily book an aerial tour above Murphy, North Carolina and our mountain region.
Maybe you’d like to climb into a wind-powered glider, and soar silently over some of eastern Tennessee’s highest peaks. Regardless of the season, you’ll enjoy spectacular views, and will likely have the thrill of a lifetime. Can’t decide which one to choose? Try them both!
Enjoy a Scenic Flight (or Flight Lessons) Above Murphy, NC
To experience the thrill of flying over our stunning mountains, you won’t have to drive for two hours and book a sightseeing flight from a metro airport. Instead, hop in your car (or truck), and make the scenic drive to Western Carolina Regional Airport in nearby Andrews, North Carolina.
Located in the scenic Andrews Valley, Western Carolina Regional Airport (call sign KRHP) is home to numerous small aircraft, and you might even see a private jet or two on occasion. With hangar space and tie-downs, plus fuel and service, this historic airport makes a convenient home base or stopping point for regional explorations.
Western Carolina Regional Airport is also home to KRHP School of Aviation, operated by The Blue Ridge Mountains Flyers and directed by Retired Captain Gayland Trull. Captain Trull possesses his Airplane Single Engine Pilot, Airline Transport, Airplane Multi-engine, and Commercial Licenses. With those credentials, he’s well equipped to provide you with a memorable flight experience.
Scenic flights are available for up to two adults or one adult with two children. Note that flights are dependent on pilot availability and weather conditions. Call the airport office for details, and leave a message for a prompt return call.
If you’d like to get your private pilot’s license, Captain Trull can also help you to accomplish that goal. You can easily complete your ground school on the airport’s premises, and also book your flight hours from this convenient regional home base.
Western Carolina Regional Airport
5840 Airport Road, Andrews, NC
Office: (828) 321-5114
Soar Over the Tennessee Mountains in a Graceful Glider
If you’re ready for a different kind of flight experience, take an unforgettable glider ride over the eastern Tennessee mountains and surrounding countryside. Glider flights are available from Chilhowee Gliderport in Benton, Tennessee, which has been in operation since the early 1970s.
When you pull onto the Chilhowee Gliderport grounds, you’ll notice an inviting-looking building that houses the facility’s office and clubhouse. You’ll see a roomy covered hangar, along with plenty of spots to observe glider flights from your comfortable folding chair. And, there’s a long, well-maintained grass runway that gets plenty of use by the gliders and Pawnee tow plane.
Let’s say you’d like to take a short glider ride with an FAA-certified glider flight instructor. You can soar with the pilot by yourself, or invite another rider to join you (combined 350-pound weight limit). So, you might be able to enjoy this incredible experience with a favorite companion. What could be better?
So, how is a glider ride different than a small private aircraft flight? For starters, you’ll hitch a ride up to “soaring” territory with the Pawnee tow plane. Once you climb to several thousand feet, your pilot will disconnect from the tow plane. Then, you’ll experience a gloriously silent flight except for the “whoosh” of the glider in the wind.
Below, you’ll see mountain peaks and valleys, and perhaps even the winding Hiwassee River. Depending on wind and weather conditions, your pilot could speed along the ridgelines, or might soar upward in the air thermals. You might even get a chance to briefly take the controls. Regardless of how the experience unfolds, it’s a “once in a lifetime” flight.
If you get hooked on gliders, and want to obtain your glider pilot license, Chilhowee Gliderport can help you to achieve that lofty goal. Private pilots who want to earn a glider ticket are also welcome.
Chilhowee Gliderport is open Friday through Sunday year ‘round, plus weekdays by appointment (weather conditions permitting). Call ahead for glider ride reservations. Day trippers will enjoy the Gliderport’s popular Octoberfest, racing events during the peak of the soaring season, and winter wave camps.
Directions: Chilhowee Gliderport is 15 to 20 minutes from most of the Ocoee River rafting outfitters. Take Highway 64 to Highway 411 north, and continue about 10 miles. Chilhowee Gliderport is on the left. Look for the large signs.
The Poltrock Team – REMAX Mountain Properties – Murphy NC – www.ILoveMurphy.com – Call us Toll Free at 1-866-Murphy-NC or 1-866-687-7496 – Murphy’s #1 Real Estate Team