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Thermal Formation Clinic – 2023

March 23, 2023 - March 26, 2023

Please join us for a NATA Formation clinic in Palm Springs, at the Thermal Regional Airport (KTRM) from March 23-26, 2021.

All NATA Formation members are welcome, and training will be offered in the T-6/SNJ/Harvard and T-28. (Pilots seeking formation training in other aircraft should contact the organizers before registering to confirm sufficient aircraft are expected.) Trainees must review our Formation Training Program before attending a NATA clinic, and pay particular attention to aircraft requirements.

Arrival day is Thursday March 23rd, and in the afternoon we will complete registrations, conduct orientation flights for newbies, and conduct the ground school.  Attendance is mandatory for participants who have not attended a formal, instructor-taught ground school. There will be a mandatory safety briefing at 0800 on Friday. All meetings will be held in the Ross Aviation South building (FBO).

NATA will comply with any local, state or federal restrictions related to COVID-19, and may be forced to cancel this event at short notice. In that case, a cancellation fee would not apply; instead, all fees collected would become credits on member accounts. Participants are aware of the risks of COVID-19 infection due to exposure to other people, whether symptomatic or not, and whether direct or indirect. More information is available on the CDC website at this address: www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov. The Hold Harmless agreement that all NATA clinic participants must sign includes acknowledgment and acceptance of these risks.

Please review ALL of the registration steps below before proceeding:

    • REGISTER ONLINE. Begin by clicking on the Register Now button, supply the requested information, and pay the registration fee. Late registrants will receive their T-shirt and name patch after the clinic. (You must be logged in to see the button. If you are not a Formation member, you will receive an error message. You may upgrade your membership by visiting your profile, clicking the renew early link, and switching to Formation. The non-PIC member registration option may ONLY be used by members who will not be piloting aircraft at the clinic.)

      • TRAINING? To be added to the list of trainees at the clinic (Wingman or Lead qualification), check the “Formation training” box during registration. Please do not check the box if you are participating for proficiency flying or as an IP/CP. If enough first-timers register, a training ground school may be arranged on arrival day (late afternoon).

    • HOLD HARMLESS AGREEMENT. You must accept the HH terms during registration, then DOWNLOAD the agreement here, print it, sign and witness, and bring hardcopy to the clinic. Each person registered, including guests, must sign an agreement.

    • AIRCRAFT READINESS. Pilots seeking training must comply with the requirements in paragraph 5 of the Training Program.

  • ALLOW TEXT MESSAGES. Clinic organizers may use text messages to relay information to participants during the clinic (e.g., weather-related updates). Please allow NATA to send you text messages by visiting the Contact Information tab in your profile, and checking the box under your mobile number in Other Contacts, towards the bottom of the screen. Review your personal Contact Information here.


Other Information:

    • MEALS.  The hotel includes a basic hot breakfast and the clinic provides snacks, drinks and lunch each day. Cookout dinners are planned on Friday and Saturday. These extra cost events are selected by default for pilots and guests; however, you may uncheck the box(es) during the registration process.

    • HOTEL.  Embassy Suites La Quinta, 50-777 Santa Rosa Plaza, La Quinta, CA 92253.  This is where we stayed before and it is a very comfortable place with newly refurbished rooms right in the heart of the resort town of La Quinta. You can reserve a room via this link. Or call Lana at (760) 238-9034 or the front desk at (760) 777-1711. The group name is “NATA” and you must book by March 8th. This is during “high season” in the desert, so rooms tend to be at a premium and in normal times, can be scarce. King suite – $209/night (excluding taxes, etc.).

    • RENTAL CARS.  Hertz, Avis and Enterprise will deliver to the FBO. It would be easiest to have the FBO, Ross Aviation, rent the cars for you, but you can do it yourself if would prefer. The FBO phone number is ‭(760) 399-4300. The local phone numbers for the car rental companies are: Hertz (760) 775-7217; Enterprise (760) 564-7859; and Avis (760) 346-7429.

    • FUEL, OIL & HANGARS.  Ross Aviation, 86400 Lightning St., Thermal, CA 92274 (760) 399-4300. Fuel will be discounted. Information coming for pre-registering with Ross for fuel and oil. Hangar space may be available in the event of storms, but plan on being on the ramp.

  • OTHER.  Ramp is large, gated and secure. There are some tie-downs available, but they are somewhat random, so unless we expect some winds, we do not plan to use them.
Thursday, March 23, 2023 to Sunday, March 26, 2023
Ross Aviation
Jacqueline Cochran Airport (KTRM)
Airport web site
86400 Lightning Street
Thermal, CA  92274

(760) 399-4300

Event Contact(s):
Kenneth C Karas


Clinic Lead


(805) 693-1460 (p)


(805) 680-8661 (c)

Dan Kirkland




(928) 692-6041 (p)


(702) 206-0775 (c)

Michael K Pfleger




(480) 556-9020 (p)


(480) 221-1170 (c)

Charles C Marshall


Admin support


(574) 320-2526 (c)

Formation Clinic
Registration is not available online – contact the event coordinator
Payment In Full In Advance Only
See event details for required registration paperwork. Only PIC registrants may pilot aircraft at the event, and must be NATA Formation members. Non-PIC registrants may not pilot aircraft at any time during the event, and must simply be NATA members (e.g., photographers, observers, solely backseating pilots). Either registrant type may bring non-member guests.
Registration cancellations will be accepted until Monday, February 20, 2023 at 12:00 AM
Cancellation Policy:
We do not issue refunds if you cancel your registration. Instead, your registration fees will be credited to your account, and applied to future NATA payments (e.g., membership dues or event fees).

If you cancel after February 20, 2023, a $50 cancelation fee (plus postage and any fees for extra T-shirts/patches) will be applied, and your items will be mailed to you.


March 23, 2023
March 26, 2023


Thermal Regional Airport (KTRM)
86400 Lightning Street
Thermal, CA 92274 United States
+ Google Map
(760) 399-4300