5 Reasons Why You Should Fly in a Helicopter

A decorated Japanese taketombo bamboo-copter (Source: Wikipedia)

You’ll be participating in one of the earliest ideas for achieving flight. While the idea of a helicopter has existed for centuries across different cultures, its roots also originate from nature via the maple seed. More notably, it was the “aerial screw” that Leonardo da Vinci famously designed, but never constructed. It’s truly interesting how such a common idea never became a feasible mode of transportation until the last couple hundred years.

The city of Seattle, with Elliot Bay and the Olympic Mountains (background) and Lake Washington (foreground)

Your perception of the area you live in will change. Living in Seattle, there are hills, rivers, lakes, mountains, channels, and landmarks that gain a new appreciation from the air. What stood out to me most was the topography of the area, which I always took for granted when walking on the ground.

Bill Gates’ house (most of which is underground, according to our pilot)

Flying in a helicopter is a personal sightseeing experience. Helicopter pilots often point out intriguing landmarks as they maneuver the aircraft, and they’re happy to answer any questions you may have while flying through the air. Such as, why did Bill Gates decide to build his house in Medina, WA? Answer: It’s by the lake and near all the other rich homeowners of the Puget sound area.

And most sightseeing helicopters are small, so you’ll be nice and close to your significant other, family, and/or friends.

The helicopter

Helicopter tours can be affordable. Generally, a short tour can be purchased for under a couple hundred dollars, and generally the tours allow for 2–3 people onboard. Split the cost between some friends, and the experience becomes even easier on the pocketbook. There are also Groupon deals constantly in many areas of the country.

A view of Ballard and the Olympic Mountains

Flying in a helicopter provides value to you, but it also provides value to the pilot. Tours help pilots obtain the flying hours they need in order to gain experience. Through their experience, they can go on to fly larger, more complicated aircraft, such as rescue helicopters.

That said, make sure you ask your pilot how many flying hours he/she has! Our pilot had a few thousand, which is pretty good.