Helicopters use spinning rotors rather than fixed wings, allowing them to hover above attractive views and right behind jets they have a crush on. Relish in the romance of a hovering craft with today's Groupon: for $135, you get a helicopter experience from Sonoma Helicopter in Santa Rosa (a $270 total value). The experience begins with a ground instruction session, followed by a subsequent 30-minute flight experience.
Sonoma Helicopter's flight team chaperones students on aerial tours through drifting cloudscapes after rounds of preflight ground training. During classes, held Tuesday and Thursday, an hour of thorough instruction on terra firma teaches groups of 5–10 students about basic safety skills and introductory helicopter aerodynamics. Instructors prep their pupils in managing the helicopter controls and outline essential flight techniques including startup, shutdown, and defragging procedures. After scheduling a departure time, aerial acrobats take the reins of a Robinson helicopter and practice climbs, hovering, and turns over the receding landscape. While weaving through the air, sky sailors take in views of rolling hills, rambling rivers, and giggling mountain mist. Flight time in the helicopter can count as part of the FAA’s pilot-certificate requirements and serves as an endorsement for future training flights. Following the tour, T-shirts remind successful pilots of their brush with the feral kites that roam the earth’s upper atmosphere.
Sonoma Helicopter's fleet of choppers hardly ever stops spinning as they lead training, photography, and tour flights throughout the Sonoma Valley and wine country year round. Their thorough training program pairs classroom and flight sessions to produce pilots capable of taming wild helicopters, and the mountain-flying school further specializes chopper jockeys. Aside from aerial surveys that delve into animal populations, power-line patrols, and crop pollinations, the staff also takes to the air to give guests a bird's-eye view of Sonoma.
5970 Flightline Dr.
Santa Rosa, California 95403