Aviation Fuel: In Alaska, Gas Prices Hurt Pilots

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People who live in Alaska are accustomed to paying more for lots of things, but the price of avgas has been rising so steeply that it's having an impact on operations. Some fuel prices at Anchorage have almost doubled already this year, the Kenai Peninsula Clarion reported this week. "This is going to change the landscape of who is flying and who is not," Tim LaPorte, of Iliamna Air Service, told the newspaper. Prices of 100LL vary widely across the state, with some remote areas actually selling at some of the lowest prices. In isolated Homer, for example, fuel arrives on a barge just once a year, so 100LL was selling there recently at $3.93 while Anchorage was charging $4.49. Other airports, where fuel arrives weekly, have seen price hikes up to 20 cents per week. "When avgas gets to $6 a gallon, you aren't going to see many general aviation pilots flying their planes just for fun," Will Johnson, a flight school operator at Bethel, told the Clarion.