Aerotrek A220 story for General Aviation News
Date: Tuesday, May 14, 2013
We had a great time at Sun-n-Fun and our trip home to Ontario involved picking around a fair bit of weather.... but, as you can see from
the photos, we were able to carry two people and quite a bit of baggage. I have around 78 hours on the airplane since taking delivery in November 2012. (my personal
total time coming up to 5000 hours) I have been flying since 1967 - all in G/A planes and I had an aerial photography business in Canada for 30 years using my
Cessna 180H on wheels and doing both vertical and oblique commercial, industrial and environmental aerial photography. When I retired 2-1/2 years ago, I felt it
was hard to justify flying my Cessna 180 around without using it for work and frankly, some of the fun of flying was disappearing for me without my business.
Two years ago, I saw the Aerotrek at Sun n Fun. I had never even considered a LSA aircraft, but for me it was similar to my first aircraft
- my Cessna 140 - in appearance but certainly not in performance! The performance of the Aerotrek A220 is leaps and bounds above the Cessna 140! The Aerotrek
cruises around 130 mph with my wheelpants on and leaps into the air in 250-300 feet with little effort.
The part that has overwhelmed me the most is the actual 'flying' of the aircraft.... the visibility with the plexiglas all around.... but most
of all - the smooth controls and the feel of flying makes it seem as though you are 'one' with the airplane.... far different than my experience with G/A aircraft.
I am absolutely 'bowled-over' with the aircraft, its payload, and its performance.
My Aerotrek has put the 'fun' back into flying for me and the best part is that it is so very affordable.... and so I don't have to think
twice before flying somewhere because of the cost. So, my Canadian registration designation reflects this - C-IVLE (with "VLE" for Very Little Expense!).
We have lots of flying planned.... hopefully the east coast of Canada this summer.... and lots of fly-ins and LSA (Advanced Ultralight in Canada)
events.... It will get me back into grass roots flying, going to smaller fields off the beaten track and with opening-up lots of new horizons.... although it doesn't
limit me to this. My A220 came equipped with a Mode-S transponder and VHF COM radio and I had a small EFIS installed... along with my GPS and Foreflight on my
iPAD I have everything I need for the whole cross-section of airports.
I realize I don't have the room of my Cessna 180, but in actual fact I rarely flew with more than one other person. I do miss the room in the
back seat of the Cessna, but all of the things I tried with my Cessna (i.e., carrying bicycles etc.) wasn't always that practical. We did do a lot of camping with
the C180 so that will be more difficult with the Aerotrek.... but carrying a tent and sleeping bags and clothes is fine in the Aerotrek.... I may not be carrying
lawn chairs and propane stoves.... but often they were not necessary.
Many years ago I flew the Cessna 140 to Tuktoyaktuk and Alaska from Ontario - 10,000 miles and camping under the wing. The performance of the
Aerotrek is way superior to my Cessna 140 -- so it is all possible!
The most exciting part for me will be flying this Winter on my new Summit wheel-penetration skis. We have quite a bit of snow in our area and
this opens up the possibility of taking-off on a snow-covered field and landing on lakes and other snow-covered fields while also being able to fly into paved runways
all Winter. It is a whole new kind of flying and the wheel-penetration skis and will add lots of potential new adventures to Winter flying in my Aerotrek A220!
All the best!
Bancroft, Ontario, Canada