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View Full Version : Alaska


beerbearbastard
06-16-2015, 08:22 AM
Hi guys, I'm new to the forum. I hope to receive a warm, ******* free welcome. But lets not get to excited.

A couple of us south africans are planning to spend some time in Alaska in the early months of 2016.

We are currently flying E120s in North Africa and are completely green with regards to Alaska.

I was fortunate to sneak in the test before 1 august 2014, and would like to convert my CAA license to FAA ATP in alaska whilst I am in Alaska early 2016. The others have varying experiences but are in for the ride, others are investigating float ratings, some others just keen to hike, drink and perhaps whoo an alaskan.

Anyone care to chime in with regards to any of the following;

-Alaska general
-Alaskan flights schools
-Alaskan job market in general
-Alaska bars and other skulduggery related activities
-Float plane ratings

Anything really, we have already spend a good deal of time googling things up. But we are keen to hear from anyone with some genuine advice, or have anyone share some of there experiences, first prize would be to hear from anyone on the ground there.

Any and all opinions welcome to get the boll rolling , thanks for hearing us out.


Singlecoil
06-16-2015, 11:28 AM
Welcome! If you plan on being in Alaska in the "early" months of 2016, all the lakes/rivers in the Anchorage area and northward will still be frozen. If you want to fly floats that time of year, you would need to be in Southeast Alaska, Juneau, Ketchikan, Sitka, etc.

JamesNoBrakes
06-16-2015, 01:27 PM
Flying on skis and landing in fresh snow is fun! Several highly experienced instructors in the area to choose from.


Panzon
06-16-2015, 04:41 PM
Hi guys, I'm new to the forum. I hope to receive a warm, ******* free welcome. But lets not get to excited.

A couple of us south africans are planning to spend some time in Alaska in the early months of 2016.

We are currently flying E120s in North Africa and are completely green with regards to Alaska.

I was fortunate to sneak in the test before 1 august 2014, and would like to convert my CAA license to FAA ATP in alaska whilst I am in Alaska early 2016. The others have varying experiences but are in for the ride, others are investigating float ratings, some others just keen to hike, drink and perhaps whoo an alaskan.

Anyone care to chime in with regards to any of the following;

-Alaska general
-Alaskan flights schools
-Alaskan job market in general
-Alaska bars and other skulduggery related activities
-Float plane ratings

Anything really, we have already spend a good deal of time googling things up. But we are keen to hear from anyone with some genuine advice, or have anyone share some of there experiences, first prize would be to hear from anyone on the ground there.

Any and all opinions welcome to get the boll rolling , thanks for hearing us out.
Lots to do in Alaska. The end of ski flying varies (lasts longer in the north than the south, logically). The lakes open up around Anchorage in mid- to late May (although this year was earlier). Fishing (salmon) has just started.

There is a flight school at Merril Field (Take Flight) for basic stuff. Acme Cub (Lake Hood) does float ratings and tail wheel training. Artic Wikle's Air Adventures does tail wheel and off airport training. There are similar outfits in Talkeetna.

You may be able to find under the table cash jobs on alaskaslist.com or on Craigslist.org. Not sure you will be able to find any paying flying jobs without a green card, even if you have an FAA ATP.

You won't have any trouble finding skullduggery options and bars. Just ask at your hotel or hostel.

beerbearbastard
06-17-2015, 01:37 AM
Lots to do in Alaska. The end of ski flying varies (lasts longer in the north than the south, logically). The lakes open up around Anchorage in mid- to late May (although this year was earlier). Fishing (salmon) has just started.

There is a flight school at Merril Field (Take Flight) for basic stuff. Acme Cub (Lake Hood) does float ratings and tail wheel training. Artic Wikle's Air Adventures does tail wheel and off airport training. There are similar outfits in Talkeetna.

You may be able to find under the table cash jobs on alaskaslist.com or on Craigslist.org. Not sure you will be able to find any paying flying jobs without a green card, even if you have an FAA ATP.

You won't have any trouble finding skullduggery options and bars. Just ask at your hotel or hostel.

Thanks for all the replies guys.

Another question, I've always been a Jack London fan as most lads should be. I've also just reread Into the Wild, can anyone recommend anyone good reading set in Alaska, old or new, or any flying material. Preferably available on Kindle or amazon. Just to get us excited.

Two of us have green cards and will try use this trip to make contacts with the view of settling down for a few years.

I appreciate all the local gen regarding weather and will definitely keep notes of all shared. Two of us are wanting to do our FAA flight tests in Alaska, which school would you say is best suited to this? Which fields or bars should we be hanging around if were looking for work? Most of us have 2500+ multi-engine time, and 2 of us have green cards.

Any good websites to scour for information on general alaska tourist activity, and accommodation ?

Will keep an eye out on craiglists, and alakalist, thanks Panzon!

questions questions questions

beerbearbastard
06-17-2015, 01:39 AM
Lots to do in Alaska. The end of ski flying varies (lasts longer in the north than the south, logically). The lakes open up around Anchorage in mid- to late May (although this year was earlier). Fishing (salmon) has just started.

There is a flight school at Merril Field (Take Flight) for basic stuff. Acme Cub (Lake Hood) does float ratings and tail wheel training. Artic Wikle's Air Adventures does tail wheel and off airport training. There are similar outfits in Talkeetna.

You may be able to find under the table cash jobs on alaskaslist.com or on Craigslist.org. Not sure you will be able to find any paying flying jobs without a green card, even if you have an FAA ATP.

You won't have any trouble finding skullduggery options and bars. Just ask at your hotel or hostel.

Thanks for your reply man, we're researching some flyfishing and hiking options. We can't do it all, but we're hoping to get in at least some hiking, fishing or hunting, and at least a float rating ! maybe some skiing. Were all excited for an adventure.

How are the alaskans with regards to foreigners? a lot of places, eg the caribbean and Mauritius have not been very welcoming to foreigners looking for work.:D

beerbearbastard
06-17-2015, 01:45 AM
Lots to do in Alaska. The end of ski flying varies (lasts longer in the north than the south, logically). The lakes open up around Anchorage in mid- to late May (although this year was earlier). Fishing (salmon) has just started.

There is a flight school at Merril Field (Take Flight) for basic stuff. Acme Cub (Lake Hood) does float ratings and tail wheel training. Artic Wikle's Air Adventures does tail wheel and off airport training. There are similar outfits in Talkeetna.

You may be able to find under the table cash jobs on alaskaslist.com or on Craigslist.org. Not sure you will be able to find any paying flying jobs without a green card, even if you have an FAA ATP.

You won't have any trouble finding skullduggery options and bars. Just ask at your hotel or hostel.

Welcome! If you plan on being in Alaska in the "early" months of 2016, all the lakes/rivers in the Anchorage area and northward will still be frozen. If you want to fly floats that time of year, you would need to be in Southeast Alaska, Juneau, Ketchikan, Sitka, etc.

After some research and googling. All I can say is ...

SITKA!

Panzon
06-17-2015, 04:05 AM
How are the alaskans with regards to foreigners? a lot of places, eg the caribbean and Mauritius have not been very welcoming to foreigners looking for work.:D

There are many foreigners in Alaska, both tourists and workers. To work legally in the U.S. you will need a Green Card or a guest worker visa. This isn't my area of expertise, but my understanding is that Green Cards take a long time to acquire (it would probably be hard to get one before your trip in 2016). I believe many of the guest workers go into the hospitality or fishing industries, and I believe they are sourced through companies that specialize in providing foreign labor. I don't think you will have much luck coming to the States as a tourist and then trying to acquire a guest worker visa: I believe you need to hold the visa before arriving here.

I imagine you could work under the table for cash, possibly washing dishes or doing laborer work. Those jobs aren't likely to pay much, and it's expensive to be in Alaska in the summer. So if you come expecting to earn enough to pay for food, housing, and transportation I'd think there would be very little left over for discretionary expenses.

If you are thinking that you could come to Alaska and rough it like the pilots seeking work in Maun, I'd reconsider. Yes, the indigent, addicted, and mentally ill do eke out an existence living in tents in and around Anchorage, but that is a tough life and is rather high risk.

beerbearbastard
06-17-2015, 04:58 AM
There are many foreigners in Alaska, both tourists and workers. To work legally in the U.S. you will need a Green Card or a guest worker visa. This isn't my area of expertise, but my understanding is that Green Cards take a long time to acquire (it would probably be hard to get one before your trip in 2016). I believe many of the guest workers go into the hospitality or fishing industries, and I believe they are sourced through companies that specialize in providing foreign labor. I don't think you will have much luck coming to the States as a tourist and then trying to acquire a guest worker visa: I believe you need to hold the visa before arriving here.

I imagine you could work under the table for cash, possibly washing dishes or doing laborer work. Those jobs aren't likely to pay much, and it's expensive to be in Alaska in the summer. So if you come expecting to earn enough to pay for food, housing, and transportation I'd think there would be very little left over for discretionary expenses.

If you are thinking that you could come to Alaska and rough it like the pilots seeking work in Maun, I'd reconsider. Yes, the indigent, addicted, and mentally ill do eke out an existence living in tents in and around Anchorage, but that is a tough life and is rather high risk.

No sir, we have already done our time in namibia and maun sleeping in tents. I already mentioned that two of us have green cards. So we know how long it takes.

Two of us are looking to alaska to do our ATPs (as stated). And while we are there look at the professional job market. We have a decent budget to rent for a month or three. A few guys will be joining us, hiking, fishing, one guy is going to do a float rating, and yeh, perhaps one or two of us would take a fishing or bar job. But mostly we'd be looking to be on the other side of the bar, and meet some locals and have some fun.

beerbearbastard
06-17-2015, 05:00 AM
Was browsing the web. Found this website, costs a couple of dollars to see the "potential jobs". Anyone have any experience with it?

I'm skeptical. Any opines?:confused:

Panzon
06-17-2015, 10:24 AM
Thanks for all the replies guys.

Another question, I've always been a Jack London fan as most lads should be. I've also just reread Into the Wild, can anyone recommend anyone good reading set in Alaska, old or new, or any flying material. Preferably available on Kindle or amazon. Just to get us excited.

Two of us have green cards and will try use this trip to make contacts with the view of settling down for a few years.

I appreciate all the local gen regarding weather and will definitely keep notes of all shared. Two of us are wanting to do our FAA flight tests in Alaska, which school would you say is best suited to this? Which fields or bars should we be hanging around if were looking for work? Most of us have 2500+ multi-engine time, and 2 of us have green cards.

Any good websites to scour for information on general alaska tourist activity, and accommodation ?

Will keep an eye out on craiglists, and alakalist, thanks Panzon!

questions questions questions

For an extensive list of books, many of which deal with flying in Alaska, read the book thread on SuperCub.org - The Home of All Things PA-18 (http://www.supercub.org). One of my favorite books is Flying The North, by Jean Potter. I've met descendants and co-workers of the pilots she wrote about, and it's really cool to have a connection to the early days of aviation in the state.

When you get to Anchorage be sure to stop in at Tidal Wave, a new and used bookstore. They have extensive sections on flying and recreation. Just down the block is REI, where you can find out about all kinds of hiking and camping, and potentially connect with like-minded people. There is also a climbing gear store a block from REI where you can connect with even more people. I can't remember its name, but the REI employees will help you find it.

If you're looking for flying jobs just pop in at the various operators at Anchorage Intl, Lake Hood, Merrill Field, and Fairbanks. Bring your resume (and green card) and ask for the Chief Pilot.

With the times you have you might try Everts in Fairbanks, as they are always looking for right seaters in the DC-6 and DC-9. That might be a good way to get the Alaska time you'll need for employment at other companies.

As for hangouts where you might run into potential employers - I'm not aware of any. But Gwennies and the Millenium (both on Spenard Ave), and Peggie's across from Merrill Field, are popular places with the general aviation crowd.

As for flyalaska.com you asked about: I've not subscribed to it myself, so I can't tell you it's value. I don't know anyone who has. My guess is that you will be able to find the same info for free.

I can't address your other questions.

dera
06-26-2015, 08:46 AM
Without a permanent resident card/valid visa, you won't be able to work in Alaska.
For pilot jobs, you won't be able to obtain a working visa.
For further ratings, you'll need a M1 visa as well.
I hope the two of you who have the green cards already know if they are still valid (outside the country for 6 months without a re-entry permit = invalid GC, just as an example...)

It's impossible to give further advice without knowing what immigration status you guys will have when entering the country.