[UPDATE 6:28 p.m.] Helicopter Stopped at Whitethorn Junction; Controlled Traffic, Expect Delays

Helicopter owned by GMC logging landed at Whitethorn Junction this morning.

A helicopter owned by GMC logging landed at Whitethorn Junction this morning. [Photo by Laura Lasseter]

This morning around 9 a.m., a helicopter landed at the Whitethorn Junction. As of 9:40, one-way traffic control was in effect. Please be prepared for some delays.

We don’t know why the chopper is there but, according to this FAA site, the aircraft belongs to the GMC Logging.

UPDATE 6:28 p.m.: Deanna Contreras, PG&E spokesperson, tells us that her company has “subcontracted with CCM to replace one pole in the Whitethorn area with that one helicopter that was pictured.” She says they should have been done by 4 p.m.



  • Fairly arrogant to land their aircraft in the road, blocking traffic. What is an Idaho logging company doing here, especially one that is listed on Google search as permanently closed??

  • Probably scouting that old piece of Barnum land that just sold, that they’re getting ready to log.

  • Malfunction?

    • Phineas Homestone

      @guest “Malfunction?”

      Almost certainly. These machines are far too expensive to operate–for a random landing. The Junction is a good, open spot for a forced, or precautionary landing.

  • Has helicopter logging ever been done up here? Thought that was an Alaska no road type of thing.

    • Been helicopter logging in No. Humb & Klamath for years. Steep terrains.

    • Helicopter logging is fairly common in this area and has been for years. That said, it is usually restricted to areas where equipment like skidders or shovel loggers can’t operate effectively and where setting up cable yarding systems aren’t feasible.

    • Yes, my daughter and I drove out and watched them… about 20 years ago.

    • It takes place all over Humboldt

    • Helilogging is very common in Nor Cal, especially Humboldt and Trinity counties..lets them log without building temp roads..

    • The maintainence/refueling site in Carlotta, 2003ish, was across Hwy 36 from Carlotta VFD. THAT was intense! And LOUD! Shaking the house every time it landed/took off.

  • @Pinkasso where have you been?? :p
    Yes they do helicopter logging up here!
    They usually use the larger choppers to carry the logs out of hard to access places though not these little civilian crafts. Ive seen them chopper logs many times in Rio Dell. Why a small chopper like that is in whitethorn, thats another story. Someone spying on grows perhaps??

  • O GMC Logging, that makes sense, it’s named after a Chevy so it probably broke down 😂

  • Im probably not doing a good search but gmc logging is not listed as operating helicopters. Anyone find info on their helicopter ops? Id be surprised if they were going to helicopter log that Barnum piece. The helicopters used for actual logging are way different looking and are almost always Columbia company, out of Oregon. MAXXAM used them exclusively and their workers got bonuses and large salaries while the millworkers here didn’t. So unfortunately its not a new practice to use out of area co’s.

    Kym doesnt PGE usually send out a press release when they have contracted helicopters out?
    At the very least you’d think they would have to let the chp know theyre landing prior to doing it, that would be scary to be driving by when they landed, its big but not that big! It seems pretty damn dangerous and suspect. I truly hope they didnt disturb the memorial there!!!!

  • According to KMUD News on facebook:

    A navy blue helicopter with the lightning bolts has been spotted flying around the Southern Humboldt Area.

    According to GMC Logging, the owner of the helicopter, they are currently landed in the Whitethorn area, where there is one-way traffic control at the Whitethorn Junction.

    GMC logging is contracted by PG& E and will be setting power poles and doing repairs in the greater Southern Humboldt area.


  • it’s a 1963 BELL UH-1F. May have lost O/P. What goes up must come down..

  • About 30 or so years ago, PG&E used a helicopter to set about 7 poles going up Huckleberry Hill.

  • Helicopters are fickle beasts. They get trouble lights all the time, commonly called ” chip lights”, and depending on tbe trouble code, may have to land right away to keep the engine or transmission from exploding in midair. I would bet this ship got a chip light and is parked until a certified helo mechanic clears it to take off, or is put on a trailer to be towed away for repairs..

  • Could have been performing power line work, I’ve worked with this helicopter before they are out of Idaho and the pilot was a younger guy and probably was a malfunction if he landed in the road. Pretty sure they have same protocols as airplanes which can use a highway for a worst case scenario to land or at least for a helicopter the first open area they can safely land the aircraft.

  • Why da howcum it’s not a “Military Style” helicopster? Just a Huey.
    Nice paint job…

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