Not all backcountry airfields have the resources to produce materials to build a pilot shelter, but some Georgia and Florida RAF volunteers have placed a portable sawmill at Creighton Island to do just that.

Georgia Ambassador Lou Furlong reports on a successful work party at this privately-owned coastal island airfield February 18-20. He was joined by Georgia Ambassador Eric Davis who said, “We spent our time degreasing and repainting the enormous Continental engine that will power the mill. It’s now a bright Cub yellow!”  

Once the machine is operational, the crew will begin by milling lumber for a pole barn to protect the mill, “as the coastal weather is extremely unkind to everything made of steel,” Davis explained. “Our plan is to mill the lumber from the island to build a pilot shelter,” Furlong added.

Furlong and Davis were joined by Davis’s father, and Florida Liaison Bobby Capozzi who hauled saws and equipment in and began cutting wood. They were joined by Virginia Ambassador Alan White and Connecticut Liaison Drew Lyons. A few other volunteers helped install the RAF fire ring and readied the airstrip for the season. “Mostly we cleaned up the area, and set up the sawmill engine,” Furlong said.

To fly in other than for-scheduled events, pilots must obtain permission from owner Frank Williams at 912-269-5194 within 24 hours prior to arrival to obtain a runway report. For more information on Creighton and the required Safety Briefing, see the Airfield Guide.

Submitted on March 14, 2022.

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