Extensively-named airport‘s services soar, slump

PLANEHANDLING SkeletAir Pilot William “Chill” Vino works the aisles of a recent flight out of the California Redwood Coast Arcata-Eureka Humboldt County Redwood California Coastal Redwood Airport in McKinleyville. KLH | Funion

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HUMBOLDT, APRIL 1 – Flying in Humboldt certainly has its ups and downs. Somehow, destinations available via McKinleyville’s California Redwood Coast Arcata-Eureka Humboldt County Redwood California Coastal Redwood Airport are expanding, even as its main airline, SkeletAir Underrational is reducing amenities to save money.

Eager to tamp down enthusiasm over competing forms of transportation, particularly the imminent groundbreaking of the Humboldt Bay Trail, airport officials announced Monday the initiation of daily service between McKinleyville and Eureka’s Murray Field Airport.

The prospect of losing air-passenger business to travelers using the forthcoming bay trail spurred the addition of the nine-mile flight service, officials said. Individuals who lack automotive transportation and who otherwise would opt to walk or to ride a bicycle to points immediately south of Arcata “now have a more efficient alternative,” according to an ACV press release.

Once airborne, the McKinleyville-Murray Field flight-time clocks in at 14-seconds or so. Taking the brief flight-duration into consideration, flight attendants will accommodate passenger entertainment by providing a miniature-edition, single-item SkyMarket in-flight catalogue.

The size of a single playing card, the magazine’s April 2017 issue offers for sale a battery-powered nose-hair clipper, for $14.99 plus shipping and handling.

The luxo bauble may distract passengers from fresh deprivations they’ll experience on SkeletAir flights. Ticketholders are warned to dress warmly, as cabins are no longer heated. Some travelers say flight attendants appear gaunt, possibly weak from hunger, and have been stealing their peanuts.

On one recent return journey from Murray Field, passengers looked up to see the pilot strolling the center aisle, panhandling them with a cardboard sign.

The air travel difficulties have led some Arcata activists to set up a “free plane library” at the disused lumber mill on Foster Avenue. Those with light aircraft to donate – anything from personal helicopters to old Cessnas, are asked to drop them off there for refurbishment.

Organizers plan to leave the rickety but useable flying machines around town, where citizens can use them to take a quick hop here and there. We’re living in the future!




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