The Triple Lakes area can be the busiest airspace in Windy Pass. Usually it has the largest volume of traffic in July, with possibly 200 aircraft crossings on a very busy day. Triple Lakes is located just south of the McKinley National Park Airstrip (INR) in Denali National Park, and just west of the Denali Private Strip. Please listen to the proper CTAF.
Commercial Helicopter Flightseeing:
The helicopters depart the Nenana River Heliport southeast bound at 300 AGL or below to avoid the traffic pattern at the McKinley National Park Airstrip (INR). The helicopter routes may be either east out the Yanert Valley, or south for "Criss Cross" (the highway and railroad crossing just to the south of McKinley National Park Airstrip). Approximately five miles south, the helicopters turn back SW and climb to 4000 ft MSL. At the "Triple Lakes" reporting point, airplanes cross at 3000 feet MSL while the helicopters cross at 4000 feet MSL or above to maintain separation. The route over Denali National Park is generally along the Alaska Range SW toward Mount McKinley, and will be either on the north or south side depending on weather. Generally the helicopters will maintain an altitude of 2000 AGL while flying over the park, weather permitting. The route is reversed on the return. Part of the regular tour includes circling in front of the Cantwell Glacier.
Cantwell Commercial Opertors:
Flights depart Cantwell airport and generally last one hour, weather permitting. Some major reporting points used along this route are Foggy Pass, Cantwell Glacier, Easy Pass, Anderson Pass, Muldrow Glacier, Brooks Glacier, Traleika Glacier, Top of Ruth Amphitheater, Top of Eldridge Glacier, Mount Eldridge, middle fork Eldridge, north fork Eldridge, and Golden Zone.
Denali Commercial Operators:
All flights depart and terminate at the private strip located at mile 229.5 of the George Parks Highway (Highway 3). The North route tracks southwest along the north side of the Alaska Range and turns around at Mount Silverthrone. The South route tracks southwesterly along the south side of the Alaska Range and turns around north of the Ruth Amphitheater.
Healy Commercial Operators:
Flights depart and return to Healy airstrip and follow many southwesterly routes depending on weather. Summit flights are common. Flights also originate out of the Talkeetna airport.
Kantishna/Stampede Commercial Operators:
All flights depart from either Kantishna or McKinley National Park airstrips. Destinations may include Anchorage or Fairbanks; thus the routes may vary.
When departing out of the Kantishna Airstrip, communicate on 122.9 until Upper Moose Creek (to the northeast), then change to the appropriate frequency. Stampede Airstrip area traffic should also use 122.9 for CTAF