(ARIZONA HIGHWAYS TV) -- One of the most amazing things About Arizona is our gorgeous, big, blue skies. And that's probably one of the reasons why so many people like to fly here.

Now, if you want to fly like a bird and feel unencumbered, then you may want to take off in a three-wheeled trike. The best way to describe it, it's like a flying ATV.

[CALLING ALL THRILL SEEKERS: Check out this 'flying ATV' in Phoenix area]

Denny Reed, who owns trikesschool.com, likes to fly what is known as "trikes." "What I like about flying early In the morning is that the air is still. The cool, crisp air that's been settled all night. What the air does at different altitudes, and the smells and The feels, the early morning is worth the cup of coffee and the alarm clock," he said as he prepared for his morning ritual.

Reed showed Arizona Highways TV what is essentially a powered-hang glider. "Extremely heavy-duty and very, very, very high-tech.

reed's love affair with trikes started long ago. He remembers flying down the sidewalk on three wheels. He is still riding trikes, just not on sidewalks.

"Before it's anything else, it's a glider. So, a lot of times, we do shut the engine off just for a gliding experience. It's very stable on its own. They're very simple to fly," said Reed. "You push out to go up or go slow. You pull in to go fast or to come down. And then you just turn to the side through energy management."

Reed said the Federal Aviation Administration requires 15 hours of training to fly a trike. "I could have someone done in about a week and a half," he said.

Reed imports the trikes from five different countries and sells them to different manufacturers and buyers in the United States. He explains how his business almost does it all.

"We're here nine months out of the year. We do flights. We teach people to fly. We sell planes -- help people assemble them and whatnot," said Reed.

Describing the powered hang glider as a very nice flying lawnmower, Reed says it can save a whole airplane with its ballistic parachute. And when it comes to the people inside the airplane, Reed says, "It saves the crew and it saves the airplane as well."

Reed says the type of people who would fly a trike or want to experience it, are calculated risk-takers. Dustin, a student of Reed, recently purchased a trike to start his own business of flying people on aero-trekking adventures in South America. "I've wanted to fly since I was a kid. They're really nice because you actually feel the wind on your fingertips. And I think it's as close to flying like a bird that you're going to get, without growing feathers." He says he is also working on Pontoons so he'll be able to land and take off on the water.

Reed has been doing aerotrek adventures for years, flying people on fishing trips, sight-seeing in Sedona, and ghost-hunting trips near Wikieup. "I've always had buck fever as to what's over the next hill, the next mountain. This just looked like a perfect tool for finding out," he said.

Someone once said, "the engine Is the heart of an airplane, but the pilot is its soul." So if these three-wheeled flying machines can take Reed over the next hill, then he has found his soulmate.

 

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