It shouldn’t surprise anyone that the relies heavily on fixed wing and rotary aircraft to accomplish the agency’s mission. Employees take to the skies for forest inventory surveys, prescribed fire support, firefighting or to get to remote locations. Since 1919, aircraft has been an invaluable resource for the agency.
There are differing accounts as to when the Forest Service first put aircraft to use. But, it wasn’t until 1919 when Forest Service leadership talked about the use of aviation resources. In April, Forester told Chief Forester that aerial fire patrols would begin on the Angeles and Cleveland National Forests. These patrols, supported by military pilots from the , continued through 1927, after which the Air Service could no longer support the agency.