What follows is a short game of Bush Pilot Trivia — the same Spirit Made Smaller game Graywood and his son, Bobby, played whenever they were flying in their airplane, Seneca. Imagine this Q & A taking place between father and son as they approached the Seven Sisters to land Seneca on its tarn.
How and why Graywood created the game is described in Spirit Made Smaller.
(One Point) What does “Denali” mean in the Athabascan language?
A. The High One B. The Cloud Catcher C. The Great One D. Both A. & C.
(Two Points) What daring feat was performed by the Black Wolf Squadron in 1920?
(Three Points) Who holds the record for flying an airplane on the coldest day recorded in the most northern “city” in North America?
Answers: 1 pt. (D.); 2 pt. (The Army Air Corps flew four d’Havilland DH-4bs from New York to Nome to demonstrate how aviation could link the eastern seaboard to Siberia via Alaska.); 3 pt. (Noel Wien, Feb 1932, -65 F, McGrath, AK).
(One Point) Who performed in a flying circus as a barnstormer in the lower 48 before becoming an Alaskan bush pilot and ultimately President of Cordova Airlines?
A. Merle “Mudhole” Smith B. Stephen E. Mills C. Charlie Rutton D. Carl Ben Eielson
(Two Points) Who was the first to fly across the Arctic Ocean from Point Barrow, Alaska to Spitsbergen, Norway?
A. Matthew Vail B. Carl Ben Eielson C. Noel Wien D. Dixon Warren Ervin
(Three Points) What year did the first Alaska-Norway flight occur?
A. 1926 B. 1928 C. 1931 D. 1933
Answers: 1 pt. (A.); 2 pt. (B.); 3 pt. (B.).
(One Point) Large balloon-like landing tires are called what?
A. Cushion Tires B. Bollo Tires C. Compression Tires D. Tundra Tires
(Two Points) Who was the first pilot to fly across the Bering Strait?
A. Shelton Simmons B. Jack Waterworth C. Noel Wien D. Dixon Warren Ervin
(Three Points) At all costs, why must any single-engine plane avoid a tip up into a sand bar or snow bank?
Answers: 1 pt. (D.); 2 pt. (C.); 3 pt. (It could render the propeller useless).
(One Point) The most important action about flying is what?
A. Do not directly fly into the sun B. The take off C. The landing D. The GPS connection
(Two Points) Name the bush pilot who flew Doctor Sutherland and vaccine from village to village to quell a 1928 smallpox outbreak in Alaska?
A. Bob Ellis B. Noel Wien C. Hubert Wilkins D. Robert C. Reeve
(Three Points) Before starting the airplane’s engine on a very cold Alaskan morning, what do you do first?
Answers: 1 pt. (C.); 2 pt. (B.); 3 pt. (Warm up the engine before take off by draping a canvas tarp over the aircraft’s nose and engine to retain the heat in the engine oil that’s been pre-heated in a plumbers pot or an equivalent container.).
0—2 points: WHAT WERE YOU SMOKING WHEN YOU PLAYED THIS GAME?
3—9 points: NEED TO STUDY HARDER.
10–14 points: GOOD EFFORT.
15–19 points: YOU MAY APPLY FOR AN AVIATION LICENSE ONCE YOU SOLO.
20–23 points: FLIGHT INSTRUCTOR.
24 points: BUSH PILOT!