It was so dark, so early, so cold. However we were awake, filling our coffee mugs, stuffing bits of toast into our mouths and pulling our sweatshirts tight to keep the cold from biting.
We arrived at the Boulder Airport the same time that the sun made its appearance above the flat plains to the east. My sister, Jordan, pointed out into the field of still airplanes at a guy walking around an impossibly tiny plane, “There’s Adam!”
That’s when it started to really sink in. I was going up in the air. In a teeny tiny plane. Flown by my sister’s high school friend. But like really, really high up in the air. Holy Crap.
Before I knew it we were seated, strapped and taxiing down the runway.
“Alpha, fox-trot, charlie, omega, Alpha; Banaza Craft leaving Boulder…” Adam quickly and effortlessly rambled into the radio, Jordan turned back in her seat and we simultaneously raised our eyebrows and exchanged small smiles.
The ground moved faster and faster under the plane and all the sudden we were up.
We were flying over Northern Colorado!
Never had I been so exposed to the elements while in the air, the feeling of surrealism in a commercial flight was gone. There was just enough room for the three of us in the tiny plane cabin.
We flew west, heading for the trademark Flatirons of Boulder. Flying south along their face until wrapping around and bearing towards Estes Park.
Immediately Longs Peak was visible in the distance, sticking out as beautiful rugged mountain from the rest. To see the Rocky Mountains as this was absolutely breathtaking. The plains stretching out in the distance while an excess of peaks dominated the skyline in every other way.
Estes was a postage stamp sized town below us. Adam circled around and the dipped the ride side of the plane, Estes appeared! The lake, the town all sprawled below us.
House + Cabin Spotting
We left Estes heading northeast in search for our Kabin, hidden underneath the green forest. Locating an enormous gray house near what had to be Glen Haven, we put it together and ecstatically found the friendly Kabin roof!
Making it to Horsetooth Lake, the northern most part of our journey I called my dad informing him and mom to head outside; we were going to do a fly by! We soared south along the foothills quickly recognizing the very familiar ground underneath until, our house! Adam brought the plane lower and lower until we were only 200 feet up and we could make out mom and dad, waving frantically on our front porch! Jordan and I waved while Adam waved as well with the wings of the plane.
Loopty-Loops and Dive Bombs
We were on the final leg of our journey, closing back in towards Boulder. Stomachs feeling strong Adam took the plane up and up, spoke some more gibberish into the radio anddd we were rolling. Literally. Adam rolled the plane horizontally, vertically forwards and vertically backwards throughout our constant screams. The dashboard controls were beeping uncontrollably and we were looking at the earth from upside down. My stomach was at my feet and simultaneously in my mouth. Thinking we had finished our loopty-loop session I took a deep breath while he quietly said, “This will be fun.” The engines turned off and we were freefalling, nose-diving towards the ground. My body floated off my seat, only held in place by seat belt as screams filled the cabin again.
Laughing uncontrollably, unable to believe what had just happened we touched safely down back on the ground. What a truly incredible experience. To see everything you know and love from a new perspective and glimpse the earth from upside down is an unforgettable event. Thank you Adam!