“Giuseppe Caltabiano has finished an adventure straight out of a Jules Verne story — a pole-to-pole circumnavigation of the globe.
Since starting the adventure in August, the Whitefish pilot and his co-captains Jack Long and Josh Marvil have flown 38,273 miles over 144 hours, soared over 28 countries and even landed in five continents, including Antarctica. Like Verne, whose fictional tales told of flying around the world in 80 days and traveling 20,000 leagues under the sea, Caltabiano and company have a yearning for adventure.
But, he said, even after all that, no sight fills his heart like the one he calls home.
“Every time I fly into this valley, my heart gets so happy. It doesn’t matter if you’re coming from Missoula, Bozeman, Spokane,” he said. “I see this valley and Flathead Lake down below, and my heart is like, ‘Wow, I live in a fantastic place.’”
After returning home in Long’s Pilatus PC-12 plane in late January, they are the first pilots certified for completing the trip in an unmodified plane.
The conditions for a polar circumnavigation, according to the Fédération Aéronautique Internationale, include flying a course of at least 34,000 kilometers, flying to a control point north of 75 degrees and south of 75 degrees latitude, crossing the equator twice at points at least 90 degrees apart longitudinally and doing all of this within one year. While many eastbound and westbound diplomas have been awarded by the FAI, none had been handed out for the polar trip.”
Article originally posted on Daily Inter Lake. To read the full article, click here.
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