Honolulu Soaring Club, Inc. was formed in 1970 and has operated continuously from Dillingham Airfield on Oahu’s North Shore. At that time, Dillingham was an Air Force Base that had recently been deactivated. When Bill Star and Sam Bleadon came to Hawaii as recent college graduates, the best friends saw an opportunity. With the financial help of Sam’s dad, they started Honolulu Soaring with just one towplane and one glider. Sam Bleadon retired in 2007, Although Sam is retired, he still lends a hand.
Because of the excellent flying conditions in Hawaii, this soaring activity operates year round. The hours of operation are 10 am to 5:30 pm (and sometimes past 5:30 pm, in the summer months when the days are longer).
We are Hawaii’s oldest and largest soaring operation, having been at Dillingham Airfield ‘Since 1970’. What a wonderful way to see the island, in our sleek high-performance aircraft, soaring the skies over northwest Oahu. Panoramic vistas unfold as your pilot guides you in this bubble-topped aircraft; on the wings of the wind with sights and sensations never experienced before. It’s thrilling, it’s serene; and it’s HAWAII !
3 – Schweizer SGS 2-32’s. [ High-performance ] ; Used for 1- and 2-passenger scenic rides.
2 – Schweizer SGS 2-33’s. Used for 1-passenger scenic rides, instructional training of student pilots, and rental to qualified glider pilots.
1 – Schleicher A-S-K-21; our two-place [ high-performance ] AEROBATIC-demonstration glider.
2 – L-19 Bird Dog tow-planes (aka Cessna 305-A).
Click here to review descriptions of the rides
All of the Honolulu Soaring pilots are commercially rated, FAA-certified, and take pride in providing glider rides that will be an absolutely fantastic addition to any North Shore outing.
Our roster of 16 pilots include some part-timers who hold full-time jobs elsewhere. Some are airline pilots, some are retired from the work force and finding added enjoyment in their leisure time, others are continuing to build their commercial flight time while working towards a career in aviation; but, ALL share a love of flying and are happy to share that love with you.
Honolulu Soaring Club has its own maintenance facility. Although gliders are low maintenance aircraft’s, some maintenance is still required. In addition, maintenance inspections are required annually and at intervals of 100 hours of flight time.
The runway is 9,000 feet long, 75 feet wide, and paved. Dillingham Airfield was constructed in 1943 as an Army Air Corp. base. When the Air Force was created after World War II, Dillingham became an Air Force Base. Deactivated in the late 1960s, it was turned over to the U.S. Army and then leased to the State of Hawaii. The State of Hawaii operates and maintains the airfield during the day. However, at sunset the airfield closes to civilian aircrafts and is used by the military, for training helicopter pilots in night operations. Dillingham Airfield has a field elevation of 12 feet, and is also home to active skydiving activity, and assorted general aviation and ultralight craft.