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Steve 12-12-2020 08:44 PM

Backcountry Santa
On Thursday, 12/10, 42 airplanes departed from Salt Lake Int'l, KSLC, or their nearby home airport to deliver food, toys, clothing, and other necessities to the Navajo Nations in southeast Utah.
Those airplanes able to land on dirt strips flew their cargo to either Montezuma Creek airport or Navajo Mountain airport. Both airports are on the Navajo reservation and are private strips. The other option was to fly to Blanding Municipal, KBDG, and transfer your load to one of the planes shuttling boxes to the other two strips.
I and the 2 other RVs signed up to deliver 150 pounds of goods to Blanding. In the name of safety, the organizers reduced the requested weight by 20 percent. The Cessnas were loaded with 300+ pounds and the Kodiak and big twins were loaded up with much more. The safety of all involved was kept paramount. There were daily email weather updates and even a YouTube safety video briefing 2 days prior.

Additional info can be found here:

A few pics here:

rockwoodrv9 12-12-2020 08:50 PM

Nice Steve. That is great.

Vlad 12-13-2020 11:44 AM

Flying for noble cause Steve the community appreciates it. If you go next time don't divert anywhere the Navajo strip is RV friendly. Merry Xmas!

mwardle7 12-14-2020 07:49 AM

Thanks for the positive report, Steve!

I flew my RV-12 with the Backcountry Santas into Montezuma Creek last year. It was an amazing experience. It creates a real feeling of excitement for the locals who otherwise live in a fairly remote area. It's an amazing way to give back in a fun and meaningful way. Over the summer I flew to Blanding and last week I rode in a Kodiak.

The Backcountry Santa folks accommodate flying either into Blanding, Utah or one of the dirt airstrips (typically Montezuma Creek or Navajo Mountain) on the reservation; different aircraft and pilot capabilities are accommodated.

Please note that the Montezuma Creek and Navajo Mountain airstrips are on Navajo Nation property and permission is required from them prior to landing. Please respect their sovereignty.

Steve 12-15-2020 08:21 AM

I had a few reasons why I flew to Blanding instead of the other dirt strips:

1. Blanding has fuel and it was discounted for the event. It was a 2 hour flight each way and I didn't want to arrive home with the gas gages showing near EMPTY.
2. They have restrooms.
3. Donuts, juice and fruit were provided for the aircrews.

I used the same logic when I flew the Covid supply mission back in May.

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