The application period for the 2019 HTA is open through March 2.
The Grand Canyon Flight Crew provides safe and practical training opportunities for helicopter managers and helicopter crew members from all agencies to ascertain or increase their aviation knowledge and experience in a professional and educational atmosphere.
In the spring of 2000, the Helicopter Training Academy was born with 13 students. The students were used to meet the minimum staffing levels needed to keep up with the variety of missions and daily workloads here in the park and the surrounding areas like the Kaibab National Forest. Within the first year of its creation, the Academy illustrated why there was such a necessity for interagency helicopter training.
The Academy has been managed by several members from Grand Canyon Flight Crew throughout the years. Crew members have each brought new training topics, instructional methods, and ideas. Coupled with feedback from each Helicopter Training Academy student, it has led to the current program which includes workbooks, didactic trainings, practical field opportunities, and sometimes, more unique missions like long line utility work throughout the park, inner canyon medevacs, or relocating threatened or endangered species to a new habitat.
Last year the Southwest and Grand Canyon National Park had a busy and long fire season. With an increase in large incidents and managed wildfires, we were able to provide students with many opportunities to work on advancing qualifications and position task books during the fire season. We taught 14 students formally and took 9 additional trainees while on the road to Region 3, the Great Basin, and Northern California. Students and trainees performed a variety of operations such as medical emergencies, wildland fires, and continuous project and utility work associated with the park’s maintenance. All the students performed well and gained valuable experience in aviation and helicopter operations.
The application process is open for the summer of 2019 for any prospective students. Our staff is looking forward to working with the next students. We hope to learn from our students as much as we impart to them. Good luck to the future applicants!