Johanna Walker     (Michigan)

Johanna Walker (Michigan)

Johanna Walker is based at KADG, Lenawee County Airport, Adrian, Michigan. Jo Walker has been a paraglider and hang glider pilot for 15+ years.  She recently took up powered flight and true to form jumped off the cliff – as she and her husband opened Sky Walker Flying in April.  They teach and fly in Vintage Taylorcrafts and a new Allegro Light Sport. Their favorite Michigan sites are Cloud 9 for hang gliders and Green Point or Sleeping Bear Dunes for paragliders and, of course, Meyers-Diver or Lenawee County for Light Sport. My husband and I have flown these planes from coast to coast. I look forward meeting more lady taildragger pilots! Thanks Jo Walker...

Tia Robertson     (Georgia)

Tia Robertson (Georgia)

New pictures from Tia!! Tia Robertson is based at 5GA4, Air Acres Airport, Woodstock, Georgia. I earned my private pilot license in a Luscombe 8E March 8th 1981. A few days later the Luscombe and I were on our way to the Sun-N-Fun Fly-in! I continued to build time and add an instrument & multi-engine rating, commercial, CFI and a few years later was flying Jetstreams for a commuter in Atlanta. A few more years and hours and I was hired by Eastern Airlines. I went out on strike in 1989 and was later hired by United Airlines where I progressed from the engineers seat of a 727 to the right seat of a 737-200 then 757 and 767. In 2001 I took an early retirement to spend more time with my young family. I was a 737-500 Captain at the time. My husband and I have a Cessna 195 that we have had for 16 years and a Taylorcraft that has been with us for 29 years. I love taildraggers because they just feel right! I wish I could make it up to the Dayton Fly-in but my youngest will be going off to college next week and I have much to do! Tia Robertson From Judy: I left a note on this beautiful 195 at Oshkosh after I heard a woman had flown it in. You know I’d give my eye teeth for a beautiful 195! When I heard it belonged to a woman it made my day.  OK, she shares it with her husband but all the better…. he’s got to be one happy guy. They’ve got a 195 and his wife loves to fly it!! Unfortunately, Tia left me a message they were heading out before I could meet her but she did register on Ladies Love Taildraggers. Thanks Tia!...

Joshua Brehm, A guy’s perspective on taildraggers

I just got some very sad news about the death of a pilot I posted in April, I believe the only male pilot we’ve ever posted on Ladies Love Taildraggers. I featured it because his excitement, passion and enthusiasm for flying taildraggers was so genuine and contagious I thought we could all be inspired. Thank you to Shannon Gallagher, Chuck Avon and John Curry for forwarding the links. Our thoughts are with his family and friends. I’m including the email I received from John Curry, along with links to news reports, which I believe you’ll appreciate reading… “Happened by your website while doing some research and found Joshua Brehm was featured in a past blog.  I thought you may want to know that Mr. Brehm was killed this week when his Taylorcraft BL65 crashed on landing.” “I didn’t know Mr. Brehm and I don’t fly..ever, I just love and admire vintage planes and vehicles…but reading your blog and his love for flying, knowing what had happened two days ago,  gave me  insight into this man.  So often you hear of someone’s passing and never know who the person really was, but when I read the blog, I understood he died doing what he loved.  We should all be so lucky.” “Anyway, I thought you may want to let your readers know of his passing.” Links: http://www.reflector.com/news/pitt-plane-crash-kills-pilot-593817 http://www.witn.com/home/headlines/126345913.html John W Curry D&J’s Photography ————– Posted April 11, 2011 —————— Just to prove that we ladies love not only our taildraggers but the men that love them too, guess it’s time we hear it from a man’s perspective! Josh Brehm from North Carolina sent in a few pictures and thoughts about flying – very interesting. If you’re flying an antique or vintage taildragger – heck, any taildragger, bet you’ll agree with Josh.  Beware – his excitement with taildraggers is contagious!!! 🙂 “I love to fly! I love to fly! I love to fly! Happiest when flying– just about anything is okay, but taildraggers are best. Challenging, humbling, fun, capable, humbling, flexible, good-looking (as an airplane should look!), humbling, fun to land in farm fields, hard to land well, and…uh….humbling.” “There’s a mystique around conventionally-geared aircraft these days that needs to go. When pilots were trained to fly in a taildragger they were aware of wind direction and strength because they had to be. They knew how to correctly line up on a runway and do forward and side slips.” “They were more connected with the airplane. Trikes led to the “Windows-ization,” the “Walmart-ification” of aviation. Point and click and instant gratification. Forget about the mechanics and the romance and the provenance of the airplane– get it done as cheaply and quickly as you can– who cares where it came from or who built it or what went into its development. Character-be-damned, we want milquetoast flying, benumbed, removed, disassociated from oil and fuel and fire and wind and wires and fabric. Give ’em metal shells and fiberglass skins and flat panel displays to get from point “A” to point “B” without getting ruffled hair.” “I fly with friends who have never had to use their feet on the pedals once they quit taxiing. A long-winged, adverse yaw-prone, lightly loaded ship is an eye-opener to say the least. Some just don’t get it and are instantly frustrated. Others rise to the challenge and ask the right questions and are amply rewarded.” “Need to get my CFI done so I can actually do some training.  We need to get folks reintroduced to aviating as it was done.” “Not sure what I can offer to the group, but I really enjoy meeting folks interested in old airplanes.” Josh Brehm...

Helen Brennan     (Ohio)

Helen Brennan (Ohio)

Helen Brennan is based at OH15 , Minerva Airport, Minerva, Ohio. I have been flying since 1993, progressing through the customary 152’s, 172’s and Cherokees.  Back in those days (has it really been 18 years already?), ground schools were always full of student pilots and the flight school planes were booked weeks in advance.  That led to the first airplane purchase, a Piper Cherokee, which was a kind, gentle airplane.  There were many great flights exploring the region, supporting every eatery within walking distance of any airport and taking friends and relatives for rides.  But there was more to flying, more purpose and more benefit which led to a satisfying several years of being a Search and Rescue pilot and DEA pilot for the Civil Air Patrol.  Those years honed the skill of flying low and slow in all kinds of VFR weather over frequnetly inhospitable terrain, often never in the same aircraft twice and with many different faces on board.  Even as the hours mounted in my logbook, the experiences became invaluable. These experiences led to wanting to hone more skills, try new things, and what better way to do that than to get a tailwheel endorsement!  After searching as many sources as I could, I finally accepted the fact that I could get the training and ultimately the endorsement, but would not be allowed to solo the airplane – insurance stipulations I was told. Determined not to be discouraged, in 1997 I bought N43759, a 1946 Taylorcraft BC12-D.  She had a recent fabric job but was all white, except for the oil streaks on her belly from the engine and the fuel stains down over her cowling.  So while the A-65 engine was being overhauled, I designed some color graphics for her.  She got a new interior, new tires, new paint on all metal parts, new tailwheel and a new pilot – me!  I was fortunate to have a great tailwheel instructor who made sure that I was as comfortable on concrete as on grass. Since then, the little white plane and I have had many adventures together, seen many places, met many new friends, and continue to share the skies and chase clouds when we choose.  I took a break in 2007 to get my IFR license and another in 2008 to get my Commercial license and am now studying for my CFI written exam. I am looking forward to meeting all of you lady taildragger pilots and hope to see you at Moraine in August! Helen Brennan...

Carolyn Ellis     (Indiana)

Carolyn Ellis (Indiana)

I met Carolyn Ellis on Facebook and we struck up a conversation. Carolyn is from Frankfort, Indiana and owned a Cessna 150 but has a heart for taildraggers! Me in the pilot’s seat getting ready to fly with my instructor Nick Engels in the Taylorcraft.  Sad to say Nick died in a house fire a couple of years ago.  He was a really good instructor and just a good guy.  We had a lot of fun together.  This picture was taken sometime in 1995.  I was 62 when I started taking lessons and got my license when I was 65.  A late bloomer. Even though I owned a Cessna 150, I did learn first in husband Jim’s Taylorcraft.  Had to sit on a cushion and have a cushion at my back in order to reach the pedal.  And then I had a problem when landing and trying to turn and brake at the same time as the pedals were not connected. My foot is not long enough so I would have to slide my foot up and down to do the rudder then the brake and vice versa.  That was a real challenge getting that plane swung around to back it into the hangar.  Sometimes I just gave up and my instructor & I would just get out and swing it around by hand as it only weighs about 800 lbs. By the way, Jim’s Taylorcraft is pictured in the book “The Story of the Taylorcraft”.  It was one of the early ones off the assembly line. Your friend, Carolyn...

Ann Elsbach     (California)

Ann Elsbach (California)

Ann Elsbach is based at Murray Field Airport (EKA) Eureka, California and Palo Alto Airport (PAO) Palo Alto, California. I’m so happy to find you all! I started flying in 1973 in a 1943 L-2 Taylorcraft. I bought my first airplane in 1974 in Elizabethtown, KY and flew it home to CA with a little under 100 hours in my logbook. With another 100 hours I would have realized what a crazy thing it was to undertake, however the trip was great fun. The aircraft had one working brake, a faulty compass, and what later turned out to be a cracked wing spar. But I made it back, and the wing spar was spliced right away. I learned a lot on that trip! Since then I have flown about 12,000 hours, the majority in tailwheels. I got my CFI in 1976 and still love to instruct, especially in taildraggers! My second plane was an F-19 Taylorcraft and my last was a ’54 C-180 which I bought in 1985 and sold two years ago. Such a loss!! To my surprise, I have instructed in 14 different makes of tailwheel aircraft with a total of 41 different models; I just counted it up a few days ago. My current flying mission is to work with anyone in the US who is transitioning to tailwheels and needs to learn to fly his/her tailwheel competently/safely. I am happy to fly to wherever to fly whatever with whomever. 🙂 Such fun!...

Carri Hoagland    (Wisconsin)

Carri Hoagland (Wisconsin)

Carrie Eve Hoagland is based at Bayfield County Airport (Y77), Iron River, Wisconsin. I have owned the Tcraft since 1979 and I bought the Pitts last summer. The Pitts belonged to my daughter at one time and we raced it to a 4th Place at Reno in ’06. Unfortunately she was killed in ’08 racing a Cassut so I will fly it in honor of her. I have also enclosed a picture of my 18 month old granddaughter, named after her aunt, sitting in her Mom’s (my daughter) lap and flying the Tcraft. I am addicted to real planes with the little wheel in the correct place. Thanks so much. See you at Osh. Peace, Carri Hoagland...

4 Taylorcraft protecting an Aeronca

Sent in by Shannon Gallagher….probably because she flies a Taylorcraft and knows I LOVE my Aeronca!  Thanks, Shannon. 4 Taylorcrafts protecting an Aeronca...

Shannon Gallagher’s 1st Solo, Saturday, July 24, 2010

Congratulations to  Shannon Gallagher of Hohenwald, TN, 0M3 Baker Field, who’s learning to fly in a 1940 Taylorcraft, BC65.  The big news – she just soloed!! We’re proud of you, Shannon!! “Just got back from the airport a bit ago and it went great.  The guys took about 200 pics.  My three landings for the solo were just nice as they could be and everything went off without a hitch.  I now have a solo and a tailwheel endorsement!  Attached are just a few of  the photos.” Coming in on my first solo landing. Also the brick house in the backround of this pic is our house. Not bad being at the end of runway 20. * Me getting my shirt tails cut by our CFII Paul Bridges * Paul walking away and leaving me on my own * Me with what’s left of my shirt! *...

Shannon Gallagher Celebrates first hurdle!

“Betsy” the 65 hp Taylorcraft Some great news from student pilot Shannon Gallagher who is learning to fly in this little yellow Taylorcraft – she just passed her written exam and couldn’t be more excited about it!  That little task is out of the way!  Shannon flies this 65 hp Taylorcraft out of Baker Field (O3M) and wanted us to know how she’s doing. “Just thought I’d let you know I took my written test today at John Tune Airport in Nashville, and passed with flying colors.  I was so wound up going in but they made me feel comfortable and talked with me for a bit before they got down to the brass tacks of the test.  From the way my instructor is talking he will solo me in the next couple lessons,  then it’s on to the cross country stuff.” “Chuck thinks I will have finished up my training by the time you have your fly-in and is encouraging me to go.  He says he’ll come along then rent a car and go to the museum.” “Well I just wanted to give you the news, cause I’m really excited about it, I feel like a giddy school kid.” *********************************** Shannon also sent in this flyer for a May 15 Fly-in Lewis County Fly-in...

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