By Trevor Ballantyne  

The pilot of a single-engine Cessna 210 landed successfully at Steamboat Springs Airport early Thursday afternoon after the aircraft’s landing gear malfunctioned during an approach to Yampa Valley Regional Airport.

The pilot, who is based at Yampa Valley Regional Airport, had taken off in Steamboat after a local mechanic performed the aircraft’s annual inspection, said Steamboat Airport Manager Stacie Fain.

“He was going back to Hayden and got over to Hayden and they looked up and saw he didn’t have any gear and let him know and then he decided he was more comfortable bringing it back here,” Fain said. “It’s up to the pilot when they have an emergency where they decide to land.”

Shortly before 1 p.m., Steamboat Springs Fire Rescue and Steamboat Springs police responded to the airport as the airplane made its way back from the Hayden area.

After making several low passes for the crews on the ground to confirm the landing-gear malfunction, the pilot retracted the landing gear and successfully landed without incident just after 1:30 p.m., scraping the aircraft’s underside in the process.

Fain noted that the pilot, “stayed very calm and we talked about what he was going to do so he had a good plan, and he had all the equipment standing by should he need any assistance.

“He landed it safely and that is a great way for this to end.”