Reminder: FAA Drone Flight Approval Required in Cheyenne (around Laramie and Loveland too)!
Many people I've talked with don't know if you want to fly a drone in the airspace surrounding the Cheyenne Airport authorization from the FAA is required. This isn't a quick process either. To give you an idea of how far this approval area reaches, I've taken a screen shot:
You can pull this map up yourself by visiting FAA Visualize It. To decode this a little. First, all numbers are equal to fee above ground level (400 feet above ground level for example). Areas where it states 400, 300, etc., this means if you apply for an airspace authorization for an address in that area at that height you are pretty much guaranteed to fly at that altitude, but you still have to apply for an authorization and let them know the reason for your flight. This approval has currently been taking between 2-3 weeks to obtain.
You're probably asking yourself what about squares where it says 0? In a zero ceiling area you can still get approval, but a lot will determine on where you're flying, for what purpose, at what time, how often, what is the maximum height of flight, etc. The same for any area that is 100 feet. If you need to fly at 200 feet you can still apply for an authorization at this height.
The exception here would be no fly zones like any military base, state parks, etc. There is no approval to fly in these areas. This also extends to open space in Fort Collins.
All airports have the requirement to obtain an authorization, but some are a little easier by using the Low Altitude Authorization and Notification Capability (LAANC) system. These are denotated on the Visualize It link above. Here is a larger screen shot of southern Wyoming and Northern Colorado. You'll see the area around Laramie and Loveland airports is in green. As long as you only need to fly at the altitude denoted in each area, you can apply for authorization with the LAANC system to get approval in minutes. The only difference is if you want to fly above the number for that area (0, 100, etc.). To fly above the approved ceiling in those areas you need to submit your request at least 72 hours in advance.
If all that isn't enough for you, now you need to take into account weather Notice to Air Missions (NOTAM) reports, and more. I'm guessing many people just thought oh, I'll just buy a drone and fly it wherever I go. Not so fast! Unless you don't mind fines...
This is just a small sampling of the items you need to know before you fly. I hope this helps many to understand why when you're requesting drone services why there may be a longer delay than in other areas. If you have any questions, feel free to drop me an email at email@example.com.
See you soon!