Autumn has arrived, which means it’s peak flying season in many parts of the United States. There are so many reasons to love fall flying. With cooler temperatures, there’s lower density altitude, which contributes to more efficient engine performance. Best of all, flying during the autumn months offers pilots and passengers scenic views of the colorful leaves below.
Looking for some great destinations to fly to this fall season? Here are a few suggestions:
Cedar City Regional Airport (KCDC) – Utah
Fly to Cedar City to explore Zion National Park, one of America’s most-visited national parks. The park spans 232 square miles and features breathtaking views of steep red rock cliffs, narrow canyons, and lush forests. While Zion can be packed with tourists in the summer, it’s much less crowded in the colder autumn months. After landing in Cedar City, it’s just a short drive south to the city of Springdale, where you can take a free shuttle to travel inside the park. The Cedar City Regional Airport has a full-service FBO nearby that has passenger and pilot lounges, aircraft parking, and rental cars.
Beverly Regional Airport (KBVY) – Massachusetts
October is a great time to visit Salem, Massachusettes, which is famous for the Salem witch trials that took place between 1692 and 1693. The Beverly Regional Airport is a 35-minute car or train ride away from Salem’s historic and “haunted” neighborhoods, where you can take part in tons of fun and spooky activities throughout the month of October.
Block Island State Airport (KBID) – Rhode Island
Rhode Island might seem like a summer destination, but it offers stunning scenery in the fall months, too. Block Island, which is about 13 miles off the coast of Rhode Island, is home to a variety of restaurants and shops, miles of hiking trails, and a picturesque harbor. Take a day trip or stay for the night in one of the town’s historic inns.
First Flight Airport (KFFA) – North Carolina
Why did Orville and Wilbur Wright choose the Kill Devil Hills to test their airplane in 1903? Unlike their hometown of Dayton, Ohio, Kitty Hawk had consistent winds year-round, sand for soft landings, and hills to launch their flyer. When you fly to First Flight Airport, you can experience these conditions for yourself. The airport is owned and maintained by the U.S. National Park Service and encompasses The Wright Brothers National Monument, a 60-foot granite pylon sculpture. After touching down on the 3,000 foot-long paved runway, visit the newly-renovated visitors center to pay homage to aviation’s early pioneers.
Yellowstone Airport (KWYS) – Montana
If you’re a fan of camping, hiking, or fishing, this is the destination for you. Yellowstone Airport is the closest airport to Yellowstone National Park, but it’s also near Earthquake Lake and Hebgen Lake. It has a long runway, a full-service FBO, and overnight parking with a complimentary campground. Wildlife sightings are common during the fall, so be on the lookout for bighorn sheep, bison, and elk.