I was talking to another company pilot about some ideas our company may have about acquiring some S-61 helicopters.I enjoy flying the S-61 and it would supplement some of the work we do with our S-64’s.
The company has operated both helicopter types previously and we have several of us who have experience in this type of helicopter and a number of mechanics that do as well.
An S-61 and CH 54B,similar too an S-64F that I flew for another employer
I began telling the other company pilot about the last job I had flown in the S-61. We had flown the S-61 from Oregon to the very top of North America. Alert is the most Northerly inhabited place in the World.
Alert sits at the top of the map
North of Alert is the North Pole. Alaska is a thousand miles south west. The flying in that part of the Arctic can be challenging for weather and logistics. Fuel caches are spread around the Arctic Islands and some of the fuel, while questionable as to its vintage, might be a better choice than several days spent waiting for help and hoping that a Polar Bear doesn’t decide to eat you.
One fuel cache we landed at one Spring day with the S-61 had about a dozen Arctic Hares running around doing what rabbits do when they are not eating. The males get very aggressive and I remember one male ran up to the helicopter,pissed near the tire and then hopped over to me and challenged me to a boxing match.
The other company pilot hearing this story, had to call bull shit at that point and I said, no, true story. I am sure these hares had never even seen humans before and for all the rabbit knew, I was going to try and get some where with one of his ladies. He was just defending his harem.
I wish I had got a photo of the event but at least I managed to find some video from another source.
Not quite as dangerous as the killer rabbit of Monty Python fame but almost as amusing.