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Lisa Martin, CFI Primary, Seaplanes, Backcountry, Idaho



Enthusiasm for the future is bubbling over me since attending this camp-on-steroids. A whole new outlook is more brightly coloring my horizon. Most noticeably, I hadn’t realized how lonely I was. I had resigned myself to the idea that my female friends would not share the freedom, the calming effect or the confidence boosting effect that wings, my own wings, have imprinted on my psyche. I joyfully appreciate women friends who enjoy going along for an airplane ride. Yet, upon arriving home from Smiley Creek, the thought or phrase I most often cannot suppress is, “I’m not alone!” I don’t mean to imply any negative gender bias. I have not had a single, negative experience in any interaction with pilots who are men. In fact, I’ve often felt guilty because so many have gone so far above and beyond what I expected to mentor me towards proficiency and even excellence. Any oppressive forces I have met have simply been battles I’ve fought in my own mind as I look around me and see, most often, no other pilots that “look” like me (female). I had long before silenced that voice within that would tell me, “Maybe this isn’t the right place for you.” But still, now I know, I am not alone. My heart dances every time I say it! In addition to this new concept, I was very surprised to come to the understanding that my extreme caution, my habit of thinking every detail to death, my easy dependence on my highly talented and experienced husband as my back seat insurance policy is merely a rosy twist on “fear of failure.” It hit me while at Smiley Creek as I explained to another attendee that I always work so hard to do everything right (and so confine myself to easy ability) because I “never want anyone to say of me, ‘Stupid woman.’” And that is a hyperbolic thought that, if left uncorrected, would ensure I never reach any higher than mediocrity. I must challenge myself, albeit in a smart manner, to improve and excel. This realization was supported by Christina’s motivational leadership and by flying stories other women, who were not afraid to “bump it up” a notch, told round the campfire. I certainly am not a person, nor should anyone be, to blindly jump off a cliff, but I can keep on “bumping it up.” The Woman Wise Airmanship Adventure has bumped my mental toughness up a good 10 notches…and my spirit is soaring. I’ll be back, God willing.

Lisa Martin - Wyoming

Wendy Lessig, Former CFI, SuperCub, Utah


I really enjoyed the Women Wise Aviation event. It's not often that women get together to fly together and trade hangar stories. The smaller group allowed the chance to get to know the fellow pilots better. I liked the combination of flying and symposium presentations. The WWaa weekend gave a lot of food for thought, for making changes and improvements in my flying adventures and life, in general. It was really fun to be able to share some of the spectacular Idaho back country airstrips with new friends for the first time. 

Looking forward to next year's event. 

Tracey Brightman, New Hampshire, Student Pilot


I wanted to write and tell you what an amazing, educational and inspiring weekend I had at the WWaa. I felt truly honored to be there. I went to the weekend thinking that I had ...  (a) "strike" against me for the start: ... was that I didn't have my Private Pilot's Certification (yet)...The seminars...were incredibly informative and interesting. I felt a spark light up in me as I listened to "Tips on flying in the Back country" by two well known backcountry pilots. And then to go flying in the back country! I am still talking about that and showing pictures to everyone. 

I was ...lucky enough to hear one of Christina's seminars and I truly felt inspired and thankful to be able to do that. Christina has a way of making you feel like you can say "YES!" to any goals or dreams that you have for yourself. I left feeling like I was at full throttle and had just released the brakes!

And, lastly, to be surrounded by all these highly accomplished women pilots--needless to say, I was pretty much speechless at being able to be in their company. 

I left WWaa with a newfound commitment to aviation and to learning as much as I could--not only as a pilot, but other endeavors in my life as well. 

Thank you, Christina

Wilma Melville, Santa Paula, CA RV10 & Citrabria


Although I've been to a wide variety of seminars, the Woman Wise Airmanship Adventure had a quality to it that I've not expressed before. There was a graciousness to the event. New thoughts were easily expressed and accepted while there was an appreciation for pushing into new frontiers. The women in attendance represented a large cross section of aviation with experience levels from a new trainee to a retired air force gal now flying a King Air part time. There's much to be gained from an association with these dynamic women.

Jen Pinkowski CFII, MEI, Virginia


I absolutely loved WWAA. When I went I was mostly wanting to get as much Mountain Flying Experience as I could as well as get some Inspiration again. My life took an unexpected turn so at the time  I was trying to regroup. I think what helped the most for me was the camaraderie or just being able to meet other women who are also trying to accomplish something. I thought it was a great place to connect with others while also finding connection with oneself and have fun as well! As an Instructor I would recommend this definitely for students who maybe are intimidated or are trying to structure how to achieve their goals as well as gain encouragement in whatever stage they are at in training. I recommend Instructors go because it helped remind me as well as show me what students are nervous about, curious about etc. Sometimes I get caught in the rush of teaching and forget to take a step back and see how the student may be feeling about something.

Tara and Rose...Coming Soon