Canada Seaplane / amphibian rating
Anyone setting out
to obtain a seaplane rating has only to look at a map of Canada to
see the world they are about to open up for themselves. It is a
world of lakes, rivers, channels, sounds, inlets, bays, reaches,
bights, harbours, arms, and whatever else is used to name a body of
water. Beyond the geography, there is the history. Much of the
history of aviation in this country, and the history of a lot of
communities, was written with seaplanes.
All you need for the
enjoyment of flying from Canada’s waterways is a sense of
adventure, some training and a float-equipped airplane
(seaplane). Canada has more places to “land” a seaplane than
any other country in the world.
Recreational Permit, Private or Commercial Pilot Licence
holders may add a Seaplane Rating by taking a course with
one of the:
schools listed on COPA’s Web site.
It is recommended but not necessary to use a certified
flight instructor for the training. Any commercial pilot
with a seaplane rating can be an instructor.
The minimum required flying time is seven hours, which
includes at least five solo take-offs and landings. However,
it typically takes more than ten hours. There is no formal
ground school, written examination or flight test. All that
is needed is a recommendation form, signed by the
instructor, for the endorsement. Complete pilot licence
courses on floats are also available and this is a great way
to accomplish two qualifications at the same time.
Ultralight seaplanes assembled from kits have become
popular. There is no formal float flying training
requirements for ultralight pilots but it is highly
The Water Aerodrome Supplement (available from many pilot
supply shops) provides information on the several
water aerodromes in Canada where services are available but
most public waterways are useable at the pilot’s discretion.
The exceptions are national parks and some provincial parks
and wilderness areas, as well the centre of defined
navigation channels, such as canals.