River fishing guide becomes pilot


Photo: Tim Schut

Mountain Home’s Leading Edge Aviation Foundation (LEAF) has named another new pilot at Baxter County Airport.

White River fishing guide Tim Schut is the third local professional to earn a private pilot’s certificate at Midway Airport in the past two months.

Schut says flying is like fishing. One begins to learn by instruction and practice, and then one continues to learn throughout one’s life.

Schut guides locally during the winter months and in Alaska during the summers.

He says he expects to add bush flying to expand his guiding practice in Alaska.

Working with LEAF resources and instructors, Schut says he found the experience of learning to fly both exhilarating and challenging.

Much like organizing a guided trip through challenging waters, he says the satisfaction of a successful flight is very rewarding.

Scheduled to complete his training in 2021, Schut has completed all of his written studies with online resources. But his work schedule in Alaska halted progress until the end of the mandatory FFA flight check at Midway.

Because of his varied schedule, he says he “flew with every LEAF instructor available,” which gave him a rich and varied experience in aviation technology.


With no commercial flight training available in the Twin Lakes area, the nonprofit LEAF maintains two trainer aircraft for rent with flight instructors.

With a mission to educate, encourage and provide financial assistance to those interested in aviation who might otherwise be excluded, LEAF also operates an Aviation Learning Center in the North Wing of the terminal. Baxter County Airport.

The LEAF Aviation Learning Center organizes ground training sessions and houses an FAA-certified flight simulator to teach pilots to gain experience in all types of flight conditions, as well as an extensive library with videos, aviation magazines and texts.

The foundation depends on individual donations of money, aircraft or aviation equipment that can be sold to support the mission of inspiring local youth and others about aviation.

To receive a receipt for tax-deductible contributions, send a check made out to LEAF to: Steve Johnson, 607 County Road 11, Mountain Home, AR 72653 or call Gerald Gaige at 870-656-6005.

To speak directly with an instructor, call Kevin Crawford at 870-421-3443.

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