North Fork Valley Airport - Paonia

COtrip-Jul11_015.jpgThe North Fork Valley has an identity that is uniquely its own.  Bordered by the West Elk mountains on the east, Grand Mesa, the largest flat-top mesa in the world, to the north and canyons and high desert in the southwest section of the county, the valley presents a surprising experience.  North Fork Valley includes the towns of eastern Delta County:  Paonia, Hotchkiss and Crawford.

Paonia lies beneath the 11,400’ peaks of Mount Lamborn boasting some of the most fertile ground in the county.  The stunning beauty and temperate climate have gathered the largest concentration of organic farming in the state of Colorado.  Cattle ranches, sprawling orchards of cherries, peaches and apples, other fruit farms, vineyards and wineries are scattered about the countryside.

 The proximity to Elk Wilderness Area provides a playground for hiking, biking, fishing, horseback riding as well as camping and backpacking.  At Paonia State Park and its reservoir, you can enjoy a variety of water sports. Back in town, you may tour a winery, visit an artist’s studio, shop for antiques or participate in one of the many summer festivals.  Even though the town’s population is only 1,600, it features several hotels, and historic lodges and inns. A handful of good restaurants, including the Flying Fork Café, the Living Farm Cafe and Fresh & Wyld Farmhouse are good examples of local delights. Paonia even sports its own award winning nano brewery, Revolution Brewing. Surprising for a town of this size, Paonia has an independent theatre, a non-profit arts center, the Blue Sage Gallery, and its own public radio station, KVNF.

Hotchkiss is a small community along the West Elk Scenic Byway that originally began as a supply center for the area settlers.  Although agriculture and cattle ranching are still mainstays of the local economy, organic farming and animal husbandry are providing fresh perspectives to the area.

Crawford, the gateway to the North Rim of the Black Canyon of the Gunnison National Park, is in the heart of cattle country.  Adventures abound in the area from big game hunting, to superb fishing and hiking in Gunnison National Forest and water activities at Crawford Reservoir. Perhaps the best day trip from Crawford is to the 50-mile long chasm of the Black Canyon of the Gunnison.  Its sheer, dark rock walls drop more than a half mile to the Gunnison River creating an unforgettably stunning site.

Whether you are seeking relaxation or recreation, the North Fork Valley is worthy of the adventure.


North Fork Valley AirportIMAG1073.jpg


Contact: Mike Clawson 970-260-2138 (CELL)

Location: 3nmi SW of Paonia
Chart: Denver Sectional

Field Elevation: 5798 ft MSL*

Pattern Altitude: 6598 ft  - 800' AGL

Runway: 05/23, Length: 4500', Width: 60', Surface: asphalt, Lights: nstd*

Remarks: Attended Mon–Fri 1500–0100Z‡, Sat–Sun irregularly. Rwy 05–23 has –50 ́ to 75 ́ terrain drop off on both sides at various locations the entire length of rwy. Rwy 23 has–60 ́ drop off at thld and within 30 ́ of centerline at various locations. ACTIVATE HIRL Rwy 05–23, PAPI Rwy 05 and Rwy 23—CTAF.

Noise/Landing Procedures: Left Traffic & Common Sense*

Airport Services: 24 hr Self Service Fuel - Credit Card Only. Courtesy Car available - Contact Mike Clawson for keys to courtesy car. A heated pilot lounge with laptop and internet is available. Restrooms available on-field. Picnic shelter and camping on NE end of RWY.

Parking: Any open spot, no fee;
TSNT Storage: Tiedown, chains available


CDOT Airport Details


Paonia Weather & Webcams

The North Fork Valley Airport does have a weather station on-site,
mic click 122.70 4 times to get current automated weather.
Other AWOS/ASOS is at Blake Field (AJZ) and Montrose (KMTJ).
Consult Flight Service for area weather briefings. The followings
weather stations and webcams are reference only and should not be
used for flight planning.

Paonia Webcam

FBO Directory at