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Must-attend STOL events for 2022

How slow can they really go? See for yourself

Short takeoff and landing events captured the hearts and minds of aviation enthusiasts around the world in 2021. Make sure to put some of 2022’s STOL events on your calendar.

The High Sierra Fly In, said by some to be "the Burning Man for pilots," hosts pilots for a weekend of fun and STOL Drag Racing. Photo by Mike Fizer.

Copperstate Fly-In and Expo: The year’s first STOL event is coming up sooner than you might think. The Copperstate Fly-In and Expo will be February 17 through 20 at Buckeye Municipal Airport in Buckeye, Arizona. This year’s event will include the introduction of the STOL Drag series in addition to the fly-in’s existing forums, workshops, and activities for youth. 

Outlaw STOL: The Husky National STOL series will host its first National STOL series event of the year, Outlaw STOL, at Somerton Airport in Somerton, Arizona, February 24 through 26. The fly-in and camping event will have practice days for competitors as well as aircraft vendors, food vendors, and a fly-out. 

Swamp STOL Deux: The Husky National STOL series will host its Swamp STOL Deux at Jennings Airport in Jennings, Louisiana, March 17 through 19. The fly-in and airplane camping event will consist of the National STOL series competition in addition to a fly-out and vendor show.  

Valdez Fly-In and Airshow: One of the most popular STOL events of the year will occur May 13 through 15 at Valdez Pioneer Field in Valdez, Alaska. In addition to its world-famous STOL competition, the fly-in event will also have an airshow, poker run, and flour bombing competition. 

MayDay STOL Drag Races: The MayDay STOL Drag Races will occur May 20 through 22 at the Wayne Municipal Airport/Stan Morris Field in Wayne, Nebraska. The event, founded by STOL pilots Kevin Quinn and Collin Caneva, will feature the STOL Drag racing series and an opportunity for aviators to network with other STOL enthusiasts. 

EAA AirVenture Oshkosh: The Experimental Aircraft Association’s STOL demos at AirVenture in Oshkosh, Wisconsin, have also become increasingly popular in the past few years. The Twilight Flight Fest demos and competitions occur the Monday, Tuesday, Thursday, and Friday evenings of AirVenture—specifically July 25 through 31—in the Fun Fly Zone on the AirVenture campus.

ArkanSTOL Ozark Backwoods Challenge: Perhaps the most challenging of the STOL events is the ArkanSTOL Ozark Backwoods Challenge at Byrd’s Adventure Center near Ozark, Arkansas. This event challenges even the most seasoned STOL competitors with timed events consisting of landing and taking off on multiple runways nestled in windy valleys. The specific event dates are still being determined; stay tuned to the ArkanSTOL website for updates. 

STIHL National Championship Air RacesTwo birds with one stone might be the best way to describe the STIHL National Championship Air Races and Air Show. Not only will you see warbirds, jets, biplanes, and other aircraft types race around some of aviation’s most famous pylons, but you will also be able to enjoy the STOL Drag series. The event takes place September 14 through 18. 

High Sierra Fly-In: The High Sierra Fly-In is the only STOL event on our list on a dry lakebed in the middle of the Nevada desert. The event will be in October and will include days of action-packed STOL Drag events and competitions. The growing event encourages all pilots to fly in to compete for their first time or to relax and hang out with other aviation enthusiasts. 

Cayla McLeod

Cayla McLeod Hunt

Social Media Marketer
Social Media Marketer Cayla McLeod Hunt is a private pilot with a love for tailwheel and backcountry aircraft. When she isn't writing stories, she enjoys flying with friends and introducing others to general aviation.
Topics: Taildragger, Backcountry, Travel

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