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Lynden Air Cargo flies wood bison to new home in Alaska

Posted on Thu, Apr 02, 2015

Lynden Air Cargo, Alaska West Express and Alaska Marine Lines were part of a major wildlife conservation project to relocate 100 wood bison from Girdwood, AK to remote Shageluk, AK in late March. Alaska Marine Lines donated containers that were retrofitted into 'bison boxes' to hold seven animals each. The animals were trucked from Portage to Anchorage for loading into Lynden Air Cargo's Hercules aircraft and the one-hour flight to their new home near Shageluk. The animals were nearly extinct at one point and have not lived in the Shageluk area in almost a century.

Wood Bison Shageluk, AK

Photo credit: Alaska Wildlife Conservation Center/Doug Lindstrand

Lynden companies donated containers, employees, equipment and discounted the flights to help the effort. "Wood bison are the largest land animal in North America, and it took Lynden's Hercules aircraft, capable of landing on the short gravel runway at Shageluk, to transport them," says Jim Davis, Lynden Air Cargo Vice President of Marketing and Sales. "We have always been a niche operator, but this move made our top 10 list of unusual moves. We are proud to support this uniquely Alaskan effort."

Wood Bison - Lynden Air Cargo

Photo credit: Alaska Wildlife Conservation Center/Doug Lindstrand

Lynden's commitment included Loadmaster Ike McGowan accompanying the animals on the flights and Director of Cargo Operations Jerry Stout loading the animals into the bison boxes at the Alaska Wildlife Conservation Center in Portage, AK. Alaska West Express Driver Doug Scott transported the containers to the back of the Hercules for loading in Anchorage. "It was a huge undertaking. The animals were brought in from the pens, then radio-collared, vaccinated and shuttled through a chute into the containers," Stout explains. "We moved 100 animals with no incidents. All of them are alive and doing well."

"It's been a privilege to work with the Lynden crew. They have been great partners, and we appreciate their support in bringing wood bison back to Alaska's wild," says Cathie Harms, Regional Program Manager for the Alaska Department of Fish and Game's Division of Wildlife Conservation.

Tags: Unique freight, Community Service, Alaska, Wildlife, Lynden Air Cargo, Hercules, Green Lynden, Alaska Wildlife Conservation Center

Quick response draws praise from the top

Posted on Tue, Jun 25, 2013

Lynden Air Cargo night delivery to Alaska AirlinesLynden Air Cargo was singled out for praise earlier this year by Alaska Airlines CEO Brad Tilden for its quick response in Cordova, AK.

“We were asked to fly from Anchorage to Seattle and pick up two engines to take to Cordova for one of their aircrafts that had experienced maintenance issues,” explains Jim Davis, Director of Marketing & Traffic for Lynden Air Cargo. “We headed out of Anchorage, got into Seattle about 2 a.m., departed at 4 a.m. and delivered the engines to an Alaska Airlines maintenance crew that was standing by in Cordova. Two days later we made a second night flight to retrieve the engines they had removed and take them back down to their maintenance base in Anchorage. It’s always nice to get positive feedback about our performance.” Lynden’s Hercules is shown making a night delivery in the photo above.

Tags: Hercules, Alaska Airlines, Lynden Air Cargo

New addition to Lynden Air Cargo fleet

Posted on Thu, Oct 25, 2012

Lynden Air Cargo recently welcomed a new Hercules to its fleet, N407LC/P2-LAE, and it is already hard at work in Papua New Guinea.  “Historically we only certify a new aircraft every five years or so,” explains Paul Willing, Lynden Air Cargo Vice President of Maintenance. “Getting the aircraft ready and showing compliance with the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) regulations is a major undertaking, especially for aircraft that have been operated under foreign registry for their entire service lives.”

New Hercules aircraftSince the new Herc was destined for operation in Papua New Guinea (PNG), Lynden Air Cargo had to earn an FAA airworthiness certificate plus a certificate from PNG. “Once we were cleared with the FAA we were only halfway there,” Paul says. To earn a certificate of airworthiness in PNG, Lynden Air Cargo was required to apply for and receive a US Export Certificate of Airworthiness, deregister the aircraft, apply for registration and certificate of airworthiness in PNG and demonstrate conformity with PNG requirements. This was all accomplished in record time – 144 days to be exact.

“The effort was nothing short of Herculean,” Paul says. “The 144-day N407LC/P2-LAE bridging and certification project included many firsts for Lynden Air Cargo, including a concurrent avionics modernization upgrade and installing systems different from our fleet standards.” Lynden Air Cargo President Judy McKenzie agrees that it took a team effort to bring the Herc online with the rest of the fleet. “This is an exciting milestone for us,” she says.

Tags: Lynden Air Cargo, Hercules, International shipping

Lynden Air Cargo PNG achieves milestone in Papua New Guinea

Posted on Tue, Jul 24, 2012

LAC PNG 1500 flights resized 600Earlier this year Lynden Air Cargo PNG completed their 1,500th flight into the Highlands of Papua New Guinea as they continue to deliver cargo in support of the PNG LNG gas development project. “This is an extraordinary achievement,” says Lynden Air Cargo (PNG) President Greg Vaughan. “There are not many in the industry who could deliver 1,500 loads into a remote place like Tari and do it safely and reliably. Congratulations to the crews on a job well done.” Lynden uses three of its Lockheed L-382 Hercules aircraft to fly machinery, equipment and supplies from Nadzab Airport in Lae to the remote Highlands for the Project.


Tags: Lynden Air Cargo, Hercules, International shipping

Lynden companies transport wrecked plane from Alaska to Nevada

Posted on Tue, Apr 10, 2012

Add a six-seat Eclipse 500 business jet to the list of unusual items that have flown inside Lynden Air Cargo’s Hercules. The C-130 was put into service last year when a private aircraft was damaged upon landing in Nome, AK.

“The owner needed to get it out of that remCrate in Herculesote spot and down to a repair facility in Henderson, NV,” explains Lynden Air Cargo Sales Manager Bob Barndt.

After investigating a complicated barge route to transport the plane south, Glenn Austin, Director of Quality at the repair shop VNE Jet, Inc., contacted Lynden seeking alternatives. “We had a short window of time to disassemble the plane and design and build a custom crate to transport the disassembled aircraft parts,” Glenn says. “Weight and dimensions were major concerns as well as protecting the aircraft from the environment and added damage.”

Bob and Glenn devised a plan to fly the crated Eclipse to Anchorage via Lynden Air Cargo then transfer it to a Lynden Transport van for a dedicated ride down to Nevada.  Lynden crews carefully loaded and unloaded the 8,600-pound crate via forklift at each transfer point: Nome, Anchorage and Henderson.

Glenn has heard a few horror stories of Ike with crated airplaneaircraft that were repairable only to be destroyed in recovery shipping. “We have scheduled multiple aircraft transports in the past and have a track record of never adding damage, so we were very concerned when choosing a carrier,” he says. “When we uncrated the aircraft, it was great to see that it fared well without even a scratch. We were very happy with Lynden’s service.”

VNE designed the 8x8x32-foot Eclipse crate for strength and versatility. A cable was installed on both ends so it could be winched in and out of tight cargo spaces. Only 260 Eclipse aircraft were produced so it was important to the company to protect this one so it can be repaired and put back into service.

“We used many Lynden resources on this custom move,” Bob says. “If we are asked to do this type of project again, this is the model we will use. Aircraft salvage operations could be a whole new niche market for us. “

Tags: Hercules, Lynden Air Cargo, Lynden Transport

Lynden Air Cargo supports Gulf response efforts

Posted on Thu, Dec 30, 2010

Lynden Air Cargo’s N403LC is shown here on one of the 81 aerial oil-dispersant missions Lynden flew in support of BP’s Deepwater Horizon response efforts in the Gulf of Mexico earlier this year.

Dispersant flights
Dispersant flights

Dispersant flights - back view
View from inside the plane

The first L-382G began flying missions in April, followed by the second aircraft, N401LC, in June. Both aircraft finished work in the gulf in July when the well was permanently capped. Flights operated out of Stennis International Airport in Mississippi. Chief Pilot and Captain Mike Redmon and 35 Lynden Air Cargo employees were involved in the project.

Lynden Air Cargo has helped with disaster relief all around the world, including relief flights to Haiti in early 2010 and delivering emergency supplies to Samoa and Indonesia after the earthquakes in late 2009.

Tags: Alaska, Lynden Air Cargo, Hercules, Relief Efforts, Disaster Relief

Student pilots visit Lynden Air Cargo

Posted on Tue, Jun 22, 2010

There were plenty of teachable moments at Lynden Air Cargo this spring when a a high school aviation group from Chevak, Alaska, toured the facilities. Seven students and Chevak Aviation Instructor Ryan Walker learned about Lynden's operations and then toured the company's management offices, warehouse, flight operations, ramp and aircraft and maintenance building.

Chevak students visit Lynden Air Cargo

The group is similar to the "Build a Plane" group Lynden Air Cargo hosted last year from an Alaska rural high school.

Ryan began teaching elective aviation courses at the remote Chevak High School last fall, including an advanced class to prepare students for a private pilot written test.
"Flying is such a vital part of life out here and it's a real opportunity for these kids to make a living and help their communities in Western Alaska," he says.

Chevak students check out Hercules plane

The school is planning to buy a Rans S-6 kit plane students can build as part of the Build a Plane program. Ryan is also part of an effort to create a new nonprofit to put flight instructors in village schools across Alaska. AVSTEM International - short for aviation, technology, science, engineering and mathematics - will seek financial support from tribes, native corporations, school districts and other sources.

Chevak student in cockpit

"Learning to fly improves math and science skills and gives students career choices in an industry that buzzes overhead daily," Ryan explains. Ethan Bradford, Lynden Air Cargo Manager of Technical Services, says it's always rewarding to host students. "We had a great time, and we hope it was a good experience for these young aviation cadets."

Tags: Alaska, Lynden Air Cargo, Hercules

Captain's Blog: Relief flights to Haiti - Experiences of Captain James Wallace and the Aircrew of 405

Posted on Fri, Jan 22, 2010

Captain James Wallace and his Lynden Air Cargo crew recently flew to Haiti as part of the disaster relief flight efforts. Captain Wallace shares his experiences and photos from their trip to Haiti:

Captain James Wallace - Haiti Relief Flight Experiences

The disaster events of January 12th to the country of Haiti is proving to be a daunting Overhead shot of Haititask for the entire world community. Lynden Air Cargo in coordination with USAID and countless others is accomplishing the goal of providing seamless support to the Haitian community. The result of this tireless effort ultimately is saving lives. As a crew we were fortunate enough to be part of this great effort. The ground crews of Lynden and USAID in both Washington-Dulles and Haiti displayed unparalleled team work, that ultimately assisted the flight crews to maintain the highest standard.

Upon arrival into Haitian airspace the calamity of events was apparent. All air traffic control was maintained by 1 man with 1 radio. His professionalism kept control of an incredible situation. In the 2 hoursRelief flights - unloading in Haiti that we spent on the ground 50 aircraft came and went.  The airport ramp is no larger than 5 football fields that services a runway with one taxiway. Up to 20 aircraft from DC-3's to 767's littered the ramp at any given time. People strewn the ramp assisting others unloading and loading aircraft in order for them to return with more aid.

The coming days will be a daunting task for all who are aiding Haiti. The high standard of Lynden Air Cargo and USAID begins with everyone, including the Loadmasters, Mechanics, Dispatchers, Aircrew, and the countless others that it takes to operate at this level of merit.

We say thank you,

The Aircrew of 405

Captain James Wallace, Robert Willoughby, Billy Miller, Bob Lesko, and Ted Pederson

Photos: 1) Lynden Air Cargo's N405LC on approach into Haiti. 2) On the ground in PAP offloading supplies to UN.

To learn more about Lynden's Haiti relief flight involvement, please visit our relief flights information page.

Related Blog Posts:
Relief flights to Haiti: Captain Chris Caden shares his experiences
Relief flights to Haiti: Inspirational experience on the ground

Tags: Pilot Experiences, Lynden Air Cargo, Hercules, International shipping, Relief Efforts, Disaster Relief, Crew Experiences

Relief flights to Haiti: Inspirational experience on the ground

Posted on Fri, Jan 22, 2010

Loadmaster Bob Lesko is part of a Lynden Air Cargo crew that recently flew to Haiti as part of the disaster relief flight efforts. Bob shared an inspirational story about his experience in Haiti:

Loadmaster Bob Lesko - Haiti Experience

I have a little story for you on Haiti. On my last flight there I was greeted by the USAID rep and asked him for a couple of individuals to help with the offload. Haiti relief flights - Haiti locals helping to unload HercFifteen minutes later he returned with about 15 strong individuals, all local residents that they recruited. Well, some of them had seen pictures of airplanes but had never have been on an aircraft, period. So I took a little extra time to offload and had groups of 4 at a time come up and help and after we finished we all got together for a 15 minute photo shoot.

The faces and laughter that came from these people was priceless, especially after all they have gone through. It was terrific to share with them the little I had to offer and the memories that I will come home with will be treasured.

Bob Lesko
Lynden Air Cargo, LLC

Photo: Haiti locals helping to unload a Lynden Air Cargo Hercules aircraft (photo courtesy of Northern Air Cargo).

To learn more about Lynden's Haiti relief flight involvement, please visit our relief flights information page. 

Related Blog Posts
Relief flights to Haiti: Experiences of Captain James Wallace and the Aircrew of 405
Relief flights to Haiti: Captain Chris Caden shares his experiences

Tags: Lynden Air Cargo, Hercules, International shipping, Relief Efforts, Disaster Relief, Crew Experiences

Captain's Blog: Relief flights to Haiti - Captain Chris Caden shares his experiences

Posted on Wed, Jan 20, 2010

Captain Chris Caden is a Lynden Air Cargo pilot who recently flew to Haiti as part of the disaster relief logistics efforts. Captain Caden was kind enough to send several paragraphs and pictures describing his experiences in Haiti:

Captain Chris Caden - Haiti Relief Mission Report - 1/14/2010

Everyone at USAID has been super friendly to work with.Relief flights to Haiti - Hercules cargo plane

Upon arriving at IAD our crew was replacing the previous crew coming back from Lynden's first flight into PAP, lead by Capt. James Wallace. Loading of our Herc was already in progress when we got to the airplane.

We took off from Washington-Dulles Intl Airport (IAD) at about 4 am for our 4 1/2 hour flight to Port Au Prince (PAP), Haiti. When we began our approach to the airport it was very apparent that we weren't the only ones bringing relief supplies. Relief flight to Haiti - Lynden Air CargoThe earthquake had taken out all services at the airport, including radar and ATC (Air Traffic Control) capabilities, which created very difficult conditions for the authorities, but they handled the extraordinary amount of inbound air traffic to Haiti commendably. We were placed number 13 in a list of planes to land and held in a pattern overhead before we diverted to Puerto Plata (POP), Dominican Republic to get more fuel and give it another try. After obtaining clearance to take off and head back to PAP we encountered yet another delay that had us circling overhead PAP again, but we finally landed and offloaded our supplies.

Might I add that the main reason for the delays really isn't because of the lack of radar or modern ATC control, it's the lack of ramp space and movement. PAP's ramp, terminal and taxiway were built to handle a Disaster relief logistics - Haiti air terminalhalf-dozen flights per hour, and now with relief needs, are tasked with handling 3 times that much traffic. The best way I can describe it is a four-lane interstate highway being cut down to one lane.

The people from USAID met our plane once we parked and off-loaded most everything by hand. As you can imagine forklifts were in great demand with few and far between available. Everything from small helicopters to Boeing 767's were parked tightly on the ramp. The terminal building was abandoned with large visible cracks in the structure and the control tower's windows had all been shattered and busted Disaster relief logistics - USAID in Haitiout. The runway, taxiway and ramp all seemed to be in surprisingly good shape, thank goodness. We were on the ground for an hour and 45 minutes before we headed back to POP for fuel and our return trip to Denver.

I'd like to recognize everyone on the Disaster Relief Team in Washington, DC for all their efforts and coordination concerning our flight into Haiti, and I'd like to thank my crew, Randall Sanderson (FO), James Seefeldt (FE), Ted Pederson (MX) and Bob Lesko (LM) for their extraordinary efforts and professionalism. Without their dedication to the job, this simply would not have been a success.

Chris Caden
Captain/Check Airman L-382G
Lynden Air Cargo, LLC

Photos: 1) N405LC waiting in Puerto Plata, Dominican Republic. 2) Aerial view of PAP. 3) Terminal building and control tower in Port Au Prince. 4) USAID personnel offloading cargo in PAP.


To learn more about Lynden's Haiti relief flight involvement, please visit our relief flights information page.


Related Blog Posts:
Relief flights to Haiti: Experiences of Captain James Wallace and the Aircrew of 405
Relief flights to Haiti: Inspirational experience on the ground

Tags: Pilot Experiences, Lynden Air Cargo, Hercules, International shipping, Relief Efforts, Disaster Relief

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