Before the Blog: From the Internet archives ... Alaska + Bear + Plane = Duct Tape

OK, the blog had yet to be established until earlier this month. Before then, a trove of wonderful stories spread across the Internet. On afternoons when nothing of the moment quenches our thirst for a good aviation story, we'll use an old one. Consider these posts like a nice antique store, without the constant odor of mothballs and Lemon Pledge.

Just because something is old news, though, does not mean everybody has heard the last word on a subject. So we welcome you to the stories that happened Before the Blog.

Today's tale goes all the way back to last fall, when an Alaskan bear ripped into a small Piper like a can of sardines. The pilot perservered, though, and so did his plane. 

A case of duct tape later, it never looked better. Check the video slideshow of the before and after shots below:


"Did the bear smell fish on board?"

"Can you really fly a plane like that or is this a hoax?"

"I hope that pilot has a bear-skin rug."

Stories circulated along with the email.

"That is so Photoshopped."

Even the message boards at Snopes and Myth Busters got in on the act as the story went viral.

Soon after the news/hoax broke, the Alaska Dispatch chased the story down and found out it is very much true, despite some of the facts passed around in the chain email not being entirely accurate.  And for those who wonder about the effectiveness of the tape: It's common practice among commercial aviation, only it's called speed tape.