“It’s a completely unique way to experience the front range,” said Brian Widhalm of Fort Collins, whose first flight was on the Spirit of Colorado. “You’re getting views you normally wouldn’t get.”

As Brian and a friend flew with Bob McCluskey in spring 2011, Bob found himself looking for the landmarks that are easy to recognize from the ground, he said.

“You get to see the beauty of Colorado from a completely different perspective,” Brian said. “You sail through great views. It’s view after view, and you quietly float to them.”