Here's a post by my husband about the Naknek trip....
"What an amazing day it was that I was able to board a small eight passenger plane with my daughter and three of her friends headed out to Naknek Alaska. This was my teenagers first plane flight, and it was an amazing ride. In the three hour trip we saw the Alaskan range, Mt Mckinnley, two active volcanoes, glaciers, and thousands of acres of untamed rugged creation. Our pilot was awesome! He is a missionary pilot with M.A.R.C. in Alaska. The entire flight was so smooth and we barely noticed when the wheels touched the ground.
The village of Naknek is on the northeast corner of Bristol Bay. It is a fishing village of about five hundred residents for nine months of the year and 10,000 for three. Having the cannery in town brings people from all parts of the world to work.
The church has an outreach to these people that is very unique. Churches from the States send hand made quilts to this church to give to people. Many cannery workers come from overseas and are not prepared for the damp windy cold there. The church hands out quilts and a Bible in each person’s native language. What an amazing way to meet both the physical and spiritual needs of the community.
Naknek and its sister town King Salmon are accessible only by airplane (or boat when the ice is out). When we landed at King Salmon airport, our host (the pastor) picked us up and drove us to the radio station where we would be sleeping. He had over 200,000 miles on his little car and it was almost brand new when he had it barged in. Not bad for only about 20 miles of roadways that were accessible. Everything is either barged or flown in including gas and heating oil, which raises the cost of everything.
The four girls did a great job on the teaching modules. Their main focus was to demonstrate to the students how to teach the parts of a Bible club and how to lead a child to Christ using the “wordless book”. Wordless Book info Their team leader did a wonderful job organizing, sharing, and all around holding things together even when we had to cut our trip short by a day. The weather was changing rapidly and ice on the airplane was something we didn’t want to encounter in the air. The Pastor and his wife were so gracious and sent us on our way with a quilt each and some frozen salmon.
The airplane is such a needed tool for this small community. The town is divided in half by the river, and school kids are flown across to school each day. Not a very long flight mind you, but necessary because of the dangers of the river. Here is a medical flight that was called in for an emergency.
We were just preparing our airplane for departure when this leer jet landed and taxied up to the ambulance waiting on the tarmac. The ambulance people shuttled the patient to the jet and it was gone in minutes. There is no steady doctor in a village so small. Major medical departures cost many thousands of dollars by the “air ambulance”. It makes me all that much more thankful for accessibility to a clinic here in town.
Here’s the team all smiles on the safe flight back."