Oregon by air is a marvel!

Our getaways have taken you to wonderful places that take the breath away: from a helicopter crossing the Cascades Mountains to a hot air balloon ride over wine country, or even a special delivery “trout drop” above a mountain pond.

Rather than imagine the many faces of Oregon from 4,000 feet up, why not try a unique airplane ride that offers peace, quiet and a thrilling experience.

It’s an aircraft minus a motor called a “sailplane” and they take off each week from the Willamette Valley Soaring Club to soar over Washington County.

The Willamette Valley Soaring Club (WVSC) has operated for more than fifty years near North Plains. It is the largest club in the country with over 200 members and a dozen planes in the club’s fleet.

Sailplanes were once made exclusively of wood, but aluminum and fiberglass and carbon fiber technology have made modern sailplanes incredibly light. When matched with the latest electronics, the planes can stay aloft for hours and cover hundreds of miles.

WVSC participates in the Soaring Society of America’s Fly A Sailplane Today program.

Additional Oregon glider ride opportunities include Cascade Soaring and Northwest Sky Sports.

About the Author: Grant McOmie

Grant McOmie is a Pacific Northwest broadcast journalist, teacher and author who writes and produces stories and special programs about the people, places, outdoor activities and environmental issues of the Pacific Northwest. A fifth generation Oregon native, Grant’s roots run deepest in the central Oregon region near Prineville and Redmond where his family continues to live.

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