Trip To Russia To Fly The SeaBear – Part 3

TripPicture: Thomas Giegerich

Final Part Of The Trip Report To SeaBear Aircraft In Samara, Russia

Written by Thomas Giegerich – You have joined me on my travels from Germany to Russia, flew the SeaBear with me at the SeaBear Aircraft headquarters and now its time to discover Samara, Russia, before flying back home.

Sightseeing In Samara

On the next morning, Dmitry picked me up and we went to the city, where we met Valentin in a restaurant for breakfast. We ordered typical Russian food; very new to me but also very delicious. Then, Dmitry had to leave and Valentin and I started a sightseeing tour in Samara. Samara is really a very nice city. And beside all the historical and cultural background, there is one important thing about Samara: it is known for the city with the most beautiful women in the country! Valentin did not miss a chance to mention this and on the riverside, there is also a monument for the women. However, my personal highlights of the city are the beautiful historical buildings, the lively beach and the beer factory where they are producing a really nice beer.

Food and Beer at the Gellert Bar, Samara – Russia Picture: Thomas Giegerich

Later that day, we met Dmitry again and Valentin had to say goodbye for my visit. I was happy to meet him and we agreed to stay in touch. Dmitry and I have been invited to a birthday party for one of his friends. This friend owns a bar in Samara, the Gellert Bar, where they are brewing their own beer. Of course, as a German I had to taste all the beers they offer and I have to admit that their beer is really good, maybe better than some of the beers you can get in Germany. So congratulation Gellert bar, the next time when I visit Samara I will visit them again for a beer!

A Wild Collection Of Photos

Unfortunately, not very late that day, we had to leave again because my plane leaves very early the next morning and it is still a long drive (approx. one hour by taxi) to Dmitrys hunting lodge where I will stay the last night. The lodge is located outside the city on a remote place but close to the airport. When we arrived – for my feeling in the middle of nowhere – Dmitrys wife and son were already waiting for us. Again we had a very fun but short time together before I had to get to bed: only three hours later, a taxi will pick me up and bring me to the airport.

My trip back worked very well: Without problems, I reached the airport and passed the security checks and the passport control. The plane had some delay, but despite a short time for changing in Prague, I could get my fight to Frankfurt where arrived on time. I have to say I was positively surprised by Russia. I have never been in this country before but I liked it immediately: Very friendly people, a beautiful landscape and I did not feel uncomfortable at any time.

Now What?

The question that remains now is: What happens next, what was the outcome of my visit? I was very impressed by the L-44 and I really want to see such a plane flying in Germany (or anywhere outside Russia). But until this may become reality, there is still a long way to go: First, I have to clarify requirements and possibilities for certification – this is most important and will take some time.

Also the MEP (Sea) Rating, required to fly such a plane in Europe, does not exist in Germany as there are no instructors or planes available for training, which is yet another open question that has to be addressed in the next months. Last but not least, I have to find some people interested in owning and flying such a boat. If some of the readers of this article are interested, I am of course available for any further information via e-mail:

By the way, Chaika is working at the moment on the replacement of the L-44 by the L-45, a new version of the plane with the new Rotax 915 direct injection engines. More details and technical data on the L-44 can be found on their website.

Thomas Giegerich is 33 years old and works in the field of nuclear fusion in a large research centre in Germany. In 2016 he discovered his interest for water flying and joined the German Water Flying Association. Completing his private pilot’s license in 2017, he then joined a flying club in Speyer, Germany, where he is flying Piper PA-28 and an Evector SportStar. Interested in the SeaBear, he is now collaborating with the manufacturer to see about bringing this aircraft to the European market.

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