Travel to Fort Ross, California

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Ross is a small incorporated town in Marin County, California, United States, just north of San Francisco. Ross is located 1.5 miles west-southwest of San Rafael, at an elevation of 36 feet. The population was 2,415 at the 2010 census.

When people think of California many things come to mind, and 19th-century Russia is generally not one of them. Yet just 125 miles north of San Francisco sits Fort Ross, the most southerly outpost of the old Russian Empire in what is now the United States.

Russia’s expansion eastward began in the 16th century under Ivan the Terrible, and in 1741, Russian explorers “discovered” Alaska across the Bering Strait. Not long afterward, the Russian American Company was granted a monopoly by the tsar over Alaskan trade, and the empire continued to push into North America.

Seeking to buy provisions, in 1806 the RAC sent two ships to San Francisco, then under Spain. The commandant of San Francisco was reluctant to allow foreign influence so the negotiations lasted six weeks. During that time the Russian leader Nikolai Rezanov became engaged to the commandant’s daughter. Rezanov left to get permission from the Tsar to marry outside his Russian Orthodox religion, but died while riding across Siberia. His intended waited patiently for his return, eventually becoming a nun. This tragic love story was told in a poem by Bret Harte, and in 1981 a Moscow play Juno and Avos based on the story packed theaters.

In 1812, a group of Russian and native Alaskan Aleuts sailed south and established Fort Ross in what is now Sonoma County in northern California. They built a trading post comprised of several redwood structures as a base to hunt sea otter, plant crops, and trade with the Spanish colony of California.

Ultimately, the location proved hard to manage and unprofitable in the long term. Between this and the growing conflicts with the Mexican government and American settlers, the company closed the fort and retreated to Alaska.

Today, Fort Ross stands along Highway 1 and is part of the California State Park system. The fort includes restored and reconstructed wooden structures that look much like they did when the Russians lived here. It also houses a full-size replica of the first Californian windmill, an Orthodox church, and a visitor center with information about the fort and the often forgotten history of Russian settlement in California.

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A light jet is a category of small jets seating anywhere from 4 to 8 people (depending on configuration) and often with a maximum takeoff weight of under 10,000 pounds. Light jets are considered the lightest business jets and are approved for single pilot operation. Light jets are ideal for shorter trips for business meetings or family getaways.

Midsized Jets: 10 Passengers

Midsize jets – also referred to as mid-size jets, are great for long distance travel such as transcontinental flights or trips requiring larger passenger capacity (depending on configuration). Unlike a light jet rental, Mid-size private jets are incredibly versatile private aircraft, combining the comfort and space of larger personal planes, with the speed and agility of small private jets. Private jet speeds help the aircraft travel a range of over 5,000 nautical miles and typically seats 7 to 10 passengers.

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Large Jets: 16 Passengers

Large cabin jets have a cabin height of over six feet. Cabin width varies from nearly seven to over eight feet, while cabin length can range from 28 feet to nearly 50 feet. With endurance of 8 to 10 hours, many large cabin jets - like the Falcon 900 - are also designed for longer range flights such as New York to Paris. Large cabin jet cabin amenities can include WiFi, private lavatory, PlayStation video games, satellite phone, cabin attendant and a full galley.

Turbo Props: 10 Passengers

What sets turbo props apart is their versatility. Unlike other private jets, planes with a turbo prop engine don’t need a full runway for landing and take off; a short grass airstrip is more than enough. Which makes them perfect for taking the route less traveled. Made for short to medium journeys, turbo prop planes can land on grass airstrips and short runways. Turboprops are an economical way to fly, with room for eight to ten passengers.

Helicopters: 13 Passengers

While there are many reasons to take a chartered helicopter flight - the fact that for most it is a once in a lifetime experience is probably the most prominent. Helicopter flight in itself is an adventure that most people find thrilling. Making use of helicopter flights is also a great way to mark a special occasion and create new memories that will make a special day even more special.

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