Pilots bumped from Lake Hood
With her new float slip at the Lake Hood Seaplane Base, Janis Meldrum has joined one of the most exclusive clubs in Alaska.
And she only had to wait a decade to do it.
"I’m practicing the secret handshake," Meldrum joked. "It makes me somebody now."
Meldrum is one of two dozen airplane owners in the last three months to earn float-slip space at the state-owned seaplane base, the largest such facility in the world. She and her fellow pilots were able to lease slips thanks to new enforcement measures that have terminated several old leases.
It is perhaps the largest purge of slip space in the seaplane base’s 63-year history.
Meldrum got on the wait list at Lake Hood in 1993, and received notification in March that she could lease a space.
She plans to put her Cessna 180 on the lake in mid-May when the ice melts.
Despite the near 10-year wait, Meldrum considers herself lucky. Many folks who lease one of the 361 float slips at Lake Hood waited 18 years or longer for an opening.