I cannot recommend the K2 experience enough. Both the flying and the views were far beyond my expectations. I am a pilot myself and I have read about bush flying for years which gives me a great appreciation of the difficulty and the skill needed to do what K2's pilots do everyday with charm and grace. Their airplanes are in beautiful condition and several are bush plane "classics" including my favorite, the DeHavilland Beaver which they have on skis and on floats.
I was lucky enough to be able to experience several flights with the K2 team and each was a uniquely wonderful experience. My favorite was the flight around the mountains with the glacier landing in the Beaver but the most spectacular views were from the summit flight in the Navaho twin.
My first flight was on a sunny, clear day so I chose the "McKinley Flyer with Landing" in the Beaver on skis. After flying over rivers and glaciers and through passes with incredible views our pilot landed smoothly on a glacier at a spot called "Mountain House". This landing spot has spectacular views of Mount McKinley and surrounding peaks. Standing on the glacier gives you a true appreciation of the immensity of the steep cliffs and granite walls. It was overwhelming! K2 also does this flight in the larger DeHavilland Otter which is also on skis and has windows at each seat. An Otter landed near us while I was on the glacier and one of my favorite photos is of this bright red plane against the clean white snow and blue skies of Mountain House.
The weather is very changeable in the mountains, going from low clouds and overcast to open sunny skies and back within a few hours so some flights will see more than others. My second flight was on a day with low clouds so I opted for a Summit flight in the Navaho. The Navaho has oxygen which allows the pilot to fly above the overcast to the same 20,300 ft. altitude as the top of McKinley. On my flight, the peak was poking up above the overcast into sunny skies and we were able to circle the peak several times at varying altitudes. We were close enough to see the climbing routes and high camps. It was amazing and my photos turned out beautifully! On our return the clouds broke up enough to allow the pilot to descend among the peaks and gorges at lower altitudes so we were able to see the Ruth glacier and Mount Hunter before we returned to the airport.
Whether you are a pilot or not, flying with K2 is a wonderful way to see the Alaska range. It is an experience I will never forget!