Rob Stapleton

When his aunt and uncle flew over 6-year-old Bill Diehl’s house waggling the wings of their Aerosport biplane, and took Diehl for his first airplane ride, the seed was planted that he too would one day sit behind the controls of an aircraft. Diehl not only realized his dream of flight during his lifetime, but also manufactured and built more than 50 aircraft in Anchorage. He also became an FAA-certified manufacturer and servicer of the Arctic Tern, an aircraft of his own design based on an existing airframe. Bill Diehl was born William Archie Diehl in 1931 in Sacramento. He credits his father, who was a mechanical engineer, designer and mathematician, with helping along the certification of the Arctic Tern. This was especially useful for the FAA certification of the aircraft during G-...Rob Stapleton
EDITOR'S NOTE: The Legends in Alaska Aviation project celebrates the amazing lives of Alaska's long-time aviators who are still with us today. We've already taken a look at the lives of Al Wright , Rod Judy , and Bill Stedman , among others; Today we go along for a ride with John Hajdukovich . A pilot is born John Hajdukovich didn’t care much for flying until his riverboat broke down and he got a ride back to Fairbanks with a bold pilot. On the flight, the pilot, trying to keep John busy because of his nervousness, suggested taking the stick and flying the airplane. “I remember asking, ‘If I push the stick will the airplane crash?’ The pilot said ‘No -- it won’t unless you hold it there,’” John recalls. “I tried the stick in several different directions and, all be darned, the airplane...Rob Stapleton
EDITOR'S NOTE: Legends in Alaska Aviation project celebrates the amazing lives of Alaska's long-time aviators who are still with us today. We've already taken a look at the lives of Al Wright , Rod Judy , and Bill Stedman , among others. Today we go along for a ride with Holger "Jorgy" Jorgensen. Holger Jorgensen saw his first airplane at the tender age of 6. “It was a sight to behold,” he said. “Noel Wien ( Richard Wien 's father) arrived and the whole place came to see the plane land. At the time, I didn’t know what was more exciting -- the airplane or the way old Noel was dressed: leather helmet, coat, pants and gloves and the goggles too. But I’ll tell you this, I wanted to dress just like him. I will never forget that as long as I live." Growing up in an era of open cockpit aircraft...Rob Stapleton
EDITOR'S NOTE: The Legends in Alaska Aviation project celebrates the amazing lives of Alaska's long-time aviators who are still with us today. We've already taken a look at the lives of Al Wright , Rod Judy , and Bill Stedman , among others; Today we go along for a ride with Richard Wien. Richard Wien is a walking encyclopedia of Alaska aviation history, and much of it lies in his family’s legacy. Sitting back in his hangar office at Fairbanks International Airport, Richard Wien places his hands behind his head and starts to explain the details. Early Years Born in Fairbanks and the youngest of three children to Noel and Ada Wien, it became clear early on that Richard wanted to follow in his father’s footsteps. He describes his early years of hanging around aircraft and mechanics,...Rob Stapleton
EDITOR’S NOTE: The Legends of Alaska Aviation project celebrates pioneers in the field of Alaska aviation who are still with us today. We’ve already taken a look at the lives of several long-time aviators, including Al Wright , Rod Judy , and Bill Stedman . Today we follow the life and legacy of Orin Seybert. Orin Seybert, the founder of Penair, has over 30,000 hours of logged time flying. He specialized in making and keeping relationships with the families and fishermen of the Alaska Peninsula and the Aleutian and Pribilof Islands. But Seybert’s story is more than just starting a flying business-- his story is steeped in the culture of Western Alaska and serving the needs of the people. In fact, Orin started in aviation by giving rides to people from one village to another for fun. “At...Rob Stapleton
Accomplished pilots and users of the VOR/DME at Ted Stevens Anchorage International Airport will be interested to note that the VOR frequency and identifier is changing Thursday, Feb. 9. The new VOR (Very High Frequency Omnidirectional Radio) will change at 12:01 a.m. Alaska Standard Time to a new frequency -- 113.15 MHz -- and the Morse-code identification will be “TED.” Critical to have on board an aircraft will be updated high/low enroute charts, terminal procedures and a new Alaska Supplement. Terminal procedures for the enroute structure from Valdez to Homer, and Homer to Big Lake have changed, according to the Federal Aviation Administration. Information for GPS units can be found here , where information on navigational aids, airport details and other pertinent information can be...Rob Stapleton
Just in time for the Christmas holiday comes a wonderful book (and gift idea) that will satisfy pilots, climbers, photographers and those who love the mountains of Alaska. "My Wrangell Mountains" by Swiss photographer Ruedi Homberger and Alaska artists Jon and Jona Van Zyle will take your breath away with spectacular vistas of a frequently overlooked range of Alaska mountains, glaciers and rivers. The foreword by Chris Larsen, of the Geophysical Institute at University of Alaska Fairbanks, gives the book a technical description. This high-quality book (in paperback for $35 and hardcover for $50) contains more than 200 pages of aerials, air to air images of aircraft against gnarly peaks and glaciers and some of the most remote landing spots a Cub pilot can make. The recently published book...Rob Stapleton
Launching into virtual flight and space, the Alaska Aviation Museum has added a new dimension to its exhibits. The museum unveiled new flight and space flight simulators on Oct. 19. The Shuttle Discovery and the Forces of Flight were introduced to its board of directors and the media during an informal press conference at the Lake Hood facility. “This will help the museum take aviation into a new realm, be more modern and offer a flight demonstration with simulators," said Norm Legasse, executive director of the Alaska Aviation Museum. After an introduction by Dave Karp, president of the board of directors of the Alaska Aviation Museum who explained and thanked the sponsors of the new addition to the venue, Legasse invited board members to try the units. Each simulator exhibit features...Rob Stapleton
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The Alaska Aviation Museum unveiled two new flight simulators on Wednesday, including one that allows the participant to take a virtual trip into deep space on the Shuttle Discovery.
Rob Stapleton
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Coinciding with Aviation Appreciation Day, Fairbanks children were treated to free flights and ground school as part of the Experimental Aircraft Association's Young Eagles program.
Rob Stapleton

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