Airline Aircraft Owners and Pilots Association (AOPA), a national organization for private pilots, has announced that the Alton Bay ice runway on Lake Winnipesaukee will not be used this year – the ice never got thick enough.
It is the only ice runway in the lower 48 states. Alaska has a ton of them.
“The depth of ice in the bay has generally been fluctuating between 5 and 9 inches of ice this season but we need a minimum of 12 inches of ice to get the plow truck safely on the ice,” the New Hampshire Pilots Association’s message said. “The long-range weather forecasts from this point forward show a warming trend as we approach spring.”
I haven’t flown in almost four decades but I’d be tempted to take lessons and renew my license just to use the ice runway once. Sort of like learning to ski so you can go to Mad River Glen and ride the last single-chair chairlift.