Meet the ferry pilots

Meet the ferry pilots

As the new floatplane prepares to leave on the first stage of its journey to the UK, Ferry Pilots Dylan and Val share an insight into just what it takes to get a MAF plane ready to fly.

My husband and myself (Dylan Fast and Val Neufeld) are pilots from Winnipeg – and – for the past 13 years we have had the opportunity to ferry aircraft around the world.  Most often we have volunteered our time for Mission Aviation Fellowship and have flown from North America to various locations in Africa, Asia, Middle East and the South Pacific.

Story and photos by Val Neufeld 

Dylan has flown since his late teens and has accumulated over 15,000 hours of flying all sorts of aircraft ranging from the single engine Super Cub to the Gulf Stream business jet to his beloved helicopter.

We became involved with volunteering our time with Mission Aviation Fellowship in 2006.  Since that time, we have had the opportunity to ferry Caravans and Kodiaks to various locations in Africa, Asia, Australia, the Middle East and Indonesia (to date Dylan has flown into over 80 countries).

All our ferry flights have been unique. Energy, time, patience and paperwork are needed to get an aircraft from its place of origin to its destination. Each delivery has its own unique story. This flight destined for Bangladesh will be no exception!

The weather needs to be right in order to fly these single engine planes across the ocean.  As it often goes – careful plans are set – dates arranged – but at the end of the day – the weather has the last word.

'Dylan has accumulated over 15,000 hours of flying all sorts of aircraft' Val Neufeld 

So I begin this journey of “Flying to Bangladesh in a Float Plane” – with a delay.  The plane is now in Wichita – ready for pickup – Dylan was going to fly there this past weekend to pick it up and fly it back to Winnipeg (where we live is en route), however storm warnings and very strong winds have been issued here and in the northern states – and so he was unable to go!