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Float Plane Ride: Anahim Lake to Laidman Lake Lodge

John and I flew up by float plane to Laidman Lake Lodge from Anahim Lake in the West Chilcotin yesterday.

It’s quite the float plane ride.

"Our float plane for the flight"

Our float plane for the flight

Fortunately we had a pilot with well over 40,000 hours of flying time in the back country. The minute he said that, I knew I could trust him with my life.

He asked what we wanted to see on the way to the lodge and I quickly piped up with my request – the Rainbow Range where we had hiked a few days earlier. But they were too far to the east for this trip so we tell him to take us where he thinks it’s beautiful that’s in the general direction of the lodge.

And he does.

So for 30 minutes we enjoy a mostly untouched landscape of mountains and lakes as far as the eye can see. We get so close to the mountains we felt like we could reach out and touch them.

Enjoy the ride.

"Anahim Peak in the distance"

Anahim Peak in the distance

"Evidence of the pine beetle devastation"

Evidence of the pine beetle devastation

"Mountains on the way to Laidman Lake Lodge"

"Valley views"

"Mountain top"
:Close-up mountain view"

"Feeling very close to the mountain tops"

Feeling very close to the mountain tops

"So close the plane is almost touching"

Fortunately I have great confidence in the pilot

"Pointed mountain top"

"Big U-shaped valley"

Big U-shaped valley

"Looks like a garage sale in the middle of nowhere"

Looks like a garage sale in the middle of nowhere

"Interesting textures and colours from above"

Interesting textures and colours from above

"Logging is never a pretty sight"

Logging is never a pretty sight

"Lakes dot the landscape"

Lakes dot the landscape

"Shadow of the float plane on the trees"

Shadow of the float plane on the trees

"Our cabin at Laidman Lake Lodge"

Our cabin at Laidman Lake Lodge

Have you ever flown in a float plane?

Leigh McAdam


Join the discussion 21 Comments

  • WOW! Those are some spectacular scenery from up above. I love how you captured everything so beautifully in your pictures. Thanks for taking us along the ride with you. What an incredible experience that must have been. I’ve never been on a float plane but have always wanted to try it (as long as they have the same credentials as your pilot).

  • The pictures alone take my breath away, but then again I’ve never been on a float plane.

  • Fabulous photos Leigh. The scenery is stunning. You certainly got very close to the mountains! I love the third photo of the lake with the silver trees along the edge – it looks like a painting as does the second last with the amazing tree colours. Funnily enough I was looking at photos the other day of my only float plane flight from Broome to the Mitchell Falls in Northern Western Australia. I remember thinking how some of the photos also all looked like art works!

  • Jackie Smith says:

    A ‘white knuckler’ here whose told Joel he will never get me into a float plane as it provides two of my biggest fears: plane crashes and drowning. (Some traveler I am, huh?) Your photos are great and I particularly enjoyed them because had I been in the plane, my eyes would have been shut! :-)

    • @Jackie I’ve been on float plane rides in the Gulf Islands where I’ve been bounced along and couldn’t wait for it to end. I’ve flown in the north with a pilot who checked his fuel gauge after we took off and realized it was low. This pilot – John – gave us a smooth as glass flight – and I look forward to the return flight tomorrow.

  • All your photos are stunning, Leigh. It must have been a real rush, this ride. Love the one with the shadow. Cool!!!

  • Wow, what magnificent views! I wish we had float planes here in the Philippines too. I would really love to take a ride. I know I would definitely enjoy it like you did!

  • Sabrina says:

    Beautiful pictures! I’m not sure if I’d have the guts to get in such a small plane, but it totally looks like it would be worth it.

  • Erik says:

    I love love love taking pictures from Helicopters or small planes- it gives you a whole new perspective on an area. I really like these.

    Is it obvious I’m a bit of a geography geek? :-)

  • Anwar says:

    Wow so unreal! I love the little plane too. Good you could trust him! I think I would still be a bit nervous for sure!

  • Margaret says:

    Those photos of the Rainbow Range are beautiful. I’ve never heard of it, and now I want to go there. How fun to have been able to hike someplace and then have the opportunity to see it from above.

    • @Margaret Keep it on your bucket list and one day to your best to get there. Camp out in the back country if you can and really explore it. It’s even more glorious the further you hike in.

  • What a ride! Never had a float plane ride, but ready to go especially if I could have the same pilot. Confidence is the pilot is a big deal! Fab pics.

  • What beautiful views! I had my first bush plane experience last month, but I’ve never flown by float plane. Hopefully someday.

  • breet says:

    really like this all of views of lake range.interesting color are here.

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