July 9, 2007
Ferry pilot Curtis Bidgood
Pilots across the country have kept an eye on the whereabouts of the AOPA Win-A-Six in '06 Sweepstakes airplane, a 1967 Piper Cherokee Six.
Retired Coast Guard Cmdr. Rocky Lee was the lucky winner of the airplane in February. He moved from Novato, Calif., to Alaska this past summer after he accepted a job with Shell Oil Company. Naturally, the airplane needed to move with him.
Its recent journey began September 4. After 18.7 flight hours, the Cherokee Six arrived with ferry pilot Curtis Bidgood at the helm two days later in Anchorage.
"My family and I are very excited to have our plane home now," said Lee.
"The plane sat in a hangar in Healdsburg (Calif.) for the past four months without being flown as I looked for ways to get it up here," said Lee, who could not get time off work to transport the airplane himself before the seasonal weather started to deteriorate in Alaska.
Tied down at OneSky Aviation at the Anchorage International Airport, the Cherokee Six is due for an inspection, oil change, and clean up. Lee is happy to report there were "no mechanical failures of any kind during the trip. The engine still has less than 200 hours on it and burned an average of 15 to 17 gallons of fuel per hour predicated on the altitude."
The airplane doesn't show any signs of aging or fading, according to Lee and will be open for the public to view sometime next week.
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