Flying Sites of the Owens Valley

Site Name
Getting There from Bishop
Site Conditions
10 mins to the LZ, then 20 min to the top. 4×4.
S, S/W, W, W N/W 0-20mph
This is a great site for beginning through advanced pilots. The easy 4×4 road is a short turn around for multiple flights. It’s great for students in the morning with great XC potential the rest of the day. Evening glass-offs can happen – enjoy a great sunset flight when they do! Things to watch out for: North winds can be tricky there…be careful! This site differs from all the rest of the sites in the White Mountains in that it is best to launch at the beginning of the cycle to insure getting up! Don’t play close to the hill!
15min to the LZ, then 45 min to the top. 4×4.
S, S/W, W, W N/W up to 20mph
This launch is great for all levels of pilots. Many launches to choose from. The only drawback it that the landing area is a long glide out. So don’t think about landing! Just fly XC. Its easy to get stuck deep in the mountains. Be prepared to land out on a ridge if you hang out too long! Wait for a lull to launch!!!
20 min to the LZ, then 40 min to the top on a tire-eating 4×4 road.
This is a great high altitude launch – once you make it up the gnarly road! The advantage is the LZ always feels like it is within gliding distance. Great for confidence of the students. Wait for a lull to launch!!
50min to the LZ, then 40min to the top. 4×4.
S, S/E, E, N/E
This is a beautiful morning site. Need to be on launch by 9:30-10am ready to go. For PG the launch is rough…complete with Velcro bushes!! Tricky site in that the West wind will come in and will change fast. Many pilots get caught on launch waiting for it to get better – better to wait in the sky scratching around while it turns on. Don’t fly over the horses in the LZ!!! Don’t land in the green grass by the horses and obey the no fly zone by Mammoth Airport. You must be over 3,000’ AGL to fly over Hwy 395 and a 5-mile area of the airport!!!
Horseshoe (Walt’s Point)
1 hour to Lone Pine, 1 hour to the top on a 2WD paved road
S, E, N/E
This is the famous launch point of many world records that were set years ago! It’s a great morning site, and launch is directly off a pull-off on the paved road. It’s a cakewalk launch for hangies and a flat slope then off a cliff launch for PG’s. Advanced pilots only! Make sure the winds are not out of the west before you fly…its not a fun ride flying the Sierra’s when its blowing over the back!!!
Mammoth Mountain
W, S, E
You must contact Kari or Mammoth Mt. Before flying there. You must fly with a guide and a waiver must be signed before going up the hill. Please do not blow it for us!!
Other sites: Alabama Hills, Bri-Dog ridge, Chalk Bluffs – write for more details.

1 comment

  1. enrique says:

    hi kari.. we are a group of hg pilots from venezuela, we are planning to fly in owens next year (spring-summer depending on your suggestion).
    need info to make resevation,car rentals, hotels etc.
    your guide would be excelent…
    thanks in advance