The Breakfast Club
An Affiliate of the Arizona Pilots Assn.


The Knife & Fork



Breakfast Club Visits Valle, Grand Canyon Inn

8 Mar 2008
by Warren McIlvoy

The only explanation that I can logically come-up with that would decipher the reason why we have had to juggle the first three event locations is, we must have had a full moon on the day that the Event Committee met to assemble this year's event schedule. January was supposed to be Valle but the restaurant at the Grand Canyon Inn was closed for the season. Se we switched the Kingman event from February to January and moved Valle to February. As you well know, come February and the restaurant was still AWOL thus causing a cancellation again and going to Benson instead. March was looking better all the time. Fate was not finished playing with our schedule just yet. It turns out that the restaurant at Gallup only serves dinner from 1600 to 2100 and they did not return our phone calls to verify this information. Scratch Gallup. The restaurant at Valle did not see its shadow and would be available for us to visit in March so we would get the opportunity to fly there after all.

The only fly in the
Breakfast Club ointment was that the Cactus Fly-in at Casa Grande was on the say day as the Breakfast Club fly-in to Valle. The weather gods were smiling on us and it was just a perfect day to head north and savor the mountain views and an area where winter was still in vogue. After passing over the Sycamore Canyon Wilderness Area, we were immediately viewing the Mogollon Rim as it continued its northwesterly course. Snow was quite evident on the forest floor as well as Bill Williams Mountain that was just northwest of our line of flight. Many of the stock tanks that dot the area, where still iced-over. Soon we are crossing over I-40 and passing to the east of the Williams Airport. We are now flying over high plateau geography where the dense forests have given way to widely scattered scrub with nary a trace of snow.

A little further ahead where state route 64 and US-180 meet, is our target for the morning, Valle, Arizona. I cross over the airport at mid field to enter a left downwind for runway 1. After a smooth landing, I turn-off on the taxiway and taxi to the ramp. Valle had gained some popularity with the aviation community due to the presents of a branch of the Planes of Fame aircraft museum that is located on the field. The main terminal building also houses a pristine collection of antique cars. Right next to the airport is the World famous Bedrock City Theme Park that is popular with the much younger set. The snack bar there also attracts the road warriors as they head north to the Grand Canyon. The hike to the Grand Canyon Inn is only about a 15-minute walk so after getting some group photos on the ramp in front of a Martin 4-0-4, we head out to the highway.

Since there were only eleven of us, we were all able to sit at a long, single table. The relatively small size of our group did not put too much of a strain on the wait or kitchen staff so we all received our entrees in good time. After taking a few photos of the
Breakfast Club group at the table, we paid our tab and started the hike back to the airport. Once back in the terminal building, the antique car collection quickly got my attention for more pictures. The required "pit stop" was the last chore before our departure from Valle.

The wind had now shifted more our of the west and thus was a crosswind take-off on runway 1. It was not until we reached the Verde Valley did our ride return to the nice smooth conditions that we so dearly love.

The Valle Group

  • Warren & Jeri-Ann McIlvoy in 93MB, BC-1 & 1.5
  • Jerry & Diane Kapp and Roy & Ruth in 5658K
  • Paul Fortune and Richard Azimov in 31870, BC-201 & BC-2
  • Mert Bean and Kurt Schwertes in 5382Q
  • Ken Calman in 400JR (aka The JR Special)

What's Next?

The April
Breakfast Club event will take us to an old favorite of Bisbee, Arizona. But we will be dinning at an entirely new location there, the Bisbee Breakfast Club. Our May event will be a retake of last May's event to Catalina and Avalon that got canceled due to a wild fire on the island. The time we will be stopping in Blythe for breakfast at the truck stop. That's all for now but remember, fly safe.

. Click on the Valle link to view some photos of this event.