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Flying to Brunswick Golden Isles (BQK)
Hello, I am a fairly low time non-instrument rated pilot (about 100 hrs now) knocking off the rust from a many year hiatus. I flew about 15 hrs last year some of which was with a CFI. I am really wanting to get back in the groove this year  and fly to new places with my wife.

I was thinking about flying to Brunswick airport which would be about 150 nm flight for me.  Airnav shows the airport to be fairly busy, uncontrolled and has large jet traffic as well. This makes me a little nervous. 

Can anyone who has flown there offer any advice as to what to expect? 
9 Replies
Until December 2020 I was based at JAX Executive (KCRG).  I frequently flew my Cherokee 180 to KSSI and never found any problems dealing with the jet traffic;  just be cognizant of wake turbulence.  Meanwhile, just a mile from the threshold of R04 is the wreck of the Golden Ray which was carrying 4000 Hyundai automobiles when it ran aground and turned on its side.  It’s being cut into sections and worth a flyby.
You may also consider a quick stop at Fernandina (KFHB) FL which has an impressive new FBO that has the shape of a Navy Corsair.  The fuel is pricey but it has a nice lobby with some great aviation paintings.  I also like Jekyll Island.  I was surprised to see they now have SS Fuel. 
I am from Anderson, SC. I would say that 09J (Jekyll Island) is my favorite. 09J is right on the walking/biking trails and you can easily walk to the Jekyll Island Club (awesome!). I have done so even with light luggage. 09J now has SS fuel and you can rent a golf cart if needed. Really, the crosswinds are the only thing to watch out for at the airport. Just remember to check all of the MOAs and restricted/prohibited airspace in the area. SSI is also a wonderful destination, but the island tends to be a little more popular and expensive in my opinion. I have landed at BQK many years ago, but I can't imagine any reason to go back. It was fine, but it did not stand out as anything special.
Hi Robert,

I think crosswinds was already mentioned, but how are you with those?  I'm in the SSI camp here.  Went through there as a stop on my 300nm Commercial X-C and did stay the night at the hotel co-located with the FBO.  Simplest way to explain the entire SSI and area experience: amazing!  Also heard of good things about BQK, but I like to have options and SSI gave more of those to me.  I was there during a moderately busy time, but in all honesty, it wasn't that challenging.  Recall the basics of pilot controlled fields, maintain awareness of what's around you, sequence yourself, use your resources, and aviate.  JAX Center & Approach are some of the best around - use them.

Having been to both airports numerous times, I agree with what Ronald Levy said. Also, SSI has a hotel right at the FBO in case weather forces you to stay overnight. (Although BQK has several nearby hotels too)
Go to St. Simons Island-SSI instead of BQK.  Much more interesting.  Also our family used to own Little St. Simons Island. If you want to visit a paradise spend a couple of days there.  Phone them at 912-638-7472 or a number on their website.  If you get to know the place perhaps they’ll fix up the old landing strip or use the beach at low tide for a landing strip. I kept a T-206 there for years!  Good luck.
Phil Berolzheimer
Hi there Robert..

It's been a while since I've flown into BQK..but when I flew for a small 135 company in the early 2000's, I went into BQK 3 times a week for 2 1/2 years.  Yes..the runway is 8000x200 feet, (an old Naval air station, I believe) the approaches are VERY forgiving.  However, as I recall, there were pretty strong crosswinds more often than (k)not.  Hence, the 200 foot width.  That helped.  The FBO was always helpful with giving up to the second "preferred runway" information on the CTAF.  They had a huge wind direction and speed instrument on the wall to the side of the CSR.  And, yes, they had a crew car or two for pilots. 

One thing I LOVED about BQK is that Gulfstream had (has) it's paint shop at BQK.  They would assemble the G's over at SAV...then fly them over to BQK assembly line green to be painted at BQK in whatever color scheme the customer desired.  As far as I'm concerned, there is nothing more beautiful than being in the pattern with the then G3's and 4's floating at pattern speed.   May have even been a G5 or two.  Don't know, that may have been too early.  There is more to do at closer to SSI..but I LOVED fliying into BQK looking at the ocean just beyond the runway.

Fly safe.
John Kramer