“Summit Aviation is truly a unique and professional aviation center.”

-John Nielsen, California Highway Patrol Pilot (retired)



Summit Aviation began humbly: one pilot, one aircraft, and one small hangar. More than a decade later with a fleet of state-of-the-art aircraft, a full staff of highly-qualified flight instructors, charter pilots, and sales personnel, we've evolved into the Rocky Mountain Northwest's premier aviation service company.

Would you like to buy or sell an aircraft? Are you searching for a full-service company to manage your aircraft? Do you need on-demand private charter convenience right now? When is a good time to start flight training? Trust us to take the "complicated" out of all your aviation needs. As an all-inclusive aviation company, we guide you smoothly through any turbulence.

Our flight school is FAA-Part 141 approved, built on a foundation of exceptional flight training for private to commercial pilots onto ATP and flight instructors, with expertise in mountain flying and grooming aviators for successful careers. We offer a full menu of instruction with tailored ground schools for accelerated learning opportunities. Outfitted with Garmin avionics including the G1000, our meticulously maintained state-of-the-art Diamond airplanes comprise a fleet of the safest trainers in the world. Paired with flight simulators and an air traffic control tower, the Summit Flight School offers one of the most advanced and exciting training experiences available - and also one of the most rewarding.

We have also grown as a destination for multi-engine ratings with our sought-after DA42 Twin Star, featuring super-efficient jet fuel powered turbo diesel engines, auto-pilot, WAAS, and active traffic, taught by nationally recognized award-winning instructors. Nearby our preferred hotels sweeten the deal by offering special rates with free shuttle service, a good night’s rest and hot breakfast, plus all the amenities and services a home away from home requires.

Our team of highly dedicated professionals has extensive aircraft sales experience with a Certified Aircraft Appraiser in-house. We proudly offer a wide selection of aircraft, from a single seat piston to large luxury jets, while offering a purchasing assistance program for the most discerning clients. Sellers benefit from our years of valuable connections with national aviation dealers, brokers, industry publications, and an esteemed network of satisfied clientele.

With our exclusive charter services we will ensure the specific needs of businesses, leisure travelers, and families are met. Our on-demand private air travel features hassle-free conveniences and endless destinations. We eliminate security lines, lost luggage, worries and delays – providing a new standard of air travel that puts you in control. Your schedule is our schedule.

Whether you are on your way to earning a private pilot license or traveling to a family reunion, Summit Aviation can take you where you need to go in the utmost of safety, comfort, and confidence.

Come fly with us!




Ben Walton – President

CFI CFII MEI NAFI Master Flight Instructor

Ben founded Summit Aviation in 2002 here in Southwest Montana. Formerly a Forest Service, wildlife research, corporate, and charter pilot, Ben has accrued thousands of hours of low-level mountain flying. Over his career, he has successfully led hundreds of pilots through a variety of ratings in many aircraft types. He is also a certified aircraft appraiser, sales specialist, and aviation consultant. Ben enjoys spending his free time with his wife and fly-fishing Montana’s many rivers.


Janine Schwahn – Chief Flight Instructor - Charter Manager

CFI CFII MEI ATP- Gold Seal - NAFI Master Flight Instructor

Janine is a Kansas native and has been involved with aviation since she was 15. She headed west to Bozeman in 2009 and has been with Summit Aviation since then. Janine has been flight instructing since 1999 and prior to Summit Aviation, was the Assistant Chief Instructor at Kansas State University. She knows everything about everything and has experience with both commercial and corporate aviation. When she isn’t running the show, she can be found hunting, preferably with a bow, or out on the lakes and rivers fishing.


Mike Schwahn – Chief Pilot, Safety Manager, Charter Captain

ATP, CFI, CFII, MEI - Gold Seal, NAFI Master Flight Instructor

Mike is a Montana native that started his flying career in 2006. During the next five years he earned a reputation for high standards in training and expertise in the aviation world, while amassing large amounts of mountain flying experience. He has been awarded two AOPA Honor Roll awards, the 2014 FAA Montana Flight Instructor of The Year Award and the NAFI Master Flight Instructor Award.

He transitioned to the Summit Charter Department in 2011, where he currently flies as Captain on the Phenom 100. As one of Summit’s best alumni, Mike maintains the highest safety standards while continuing to expand and develop the companies reputation for excellence.


Andy Bloyer – Aircraft Sales Manager - Charter Captain


Andy Bloyer joined Summit Aviation in 2012. He brings over a decade of cutting edge aviation experience to the company.

Andy fell in love with aviation in his teens when he went to his local airport and took flying lessons. He would go on to earn all of his ratings and establish himself as a top flight instructor. From working at a small FBO to trip captain for Fortune 500 companies; Andy has amassed a myriad of aviation experience. He currently holds an ATP license with three type ratings.

Prior to joining Summit Aviation Andy worked as a demonstration and training pilot for Cessna Aircraft Company in both domestic and international operations. He also set up corporate flight departments for several small companies across the Northwest. Andy is a trip captain on the Phenom 100 and a lead salesman at Summit Aviation.


Jessica Denby – Accounting Manager


Jessica is an accounting professional with more than ten years of experience, which began immediately after her graduation, with honors, from Portland State University.  She spent six of those years in public accounting.  Some career highlights:  she held a position at the second largest regional tax accounting firm in the Portland area and has held licenses to practice as a Certified Public Accountant in Oregon, Nevada, and Montana.

She originally hails from the spectacular Madison Valley, but lived outside the state for more than ten years.  She returned to Montana - truly the Last Best Place – in 2009.  She and her husband enjoy cooking together, reading, and hiking.  They share their home with two felines, Alien and Predator, who have, so far, not killed them in their sleep.

She thrives on a steady diet of coffee and terrible puns.


AJ Mitchell – Check Instructor


A.J. is a graduate of the MSU Aviation Program and has been involved in aviation for 5 years. He knew he wanted to be a pilot for as long as he can remember, so when he was learned about the MSU/Gallatin College Aviation Program he quickly packed up and ditched Utah, his former home, and made for beautiful Bozeman. A graduate of the National Outdoor Leadership School, A.J. enjoys spending time in the back country where you can find him backpacking, hiking, skiing, or fly-fishing.


Phillip Levy – Flight Instructor


Phillip is a native Californian and has lived in Bozeman since 2012. A life-long desire to fly drew Phillip to planes and he obtained his Private Pilot Certificate in the Bay Area during high school. He moved to Bozeman for a slower paced life and to continue his flight training at Summit Aviation. In his free time he can be found running the hills around Bozeman, skiing, fly-fishing, and hunting.


Jeff Modrow – Flight Instructor


Jeff has grown up nearly all his life in Montana and has had the desire to make aviation his career for just as long. He is a 2014 graduate of the MSU/Gallatin College Aviation Program and also holds a Bachelors in History MSU. Jeff is an avid Seattle Mariners and Seahawks fan and in his free time enjoys playing golf, hiking, skiing and talking about anything baseball related.


Justin Waugh – Flight Instructor


Justin is a Southern gentleman from Tennessee. He had dreamt of flying since he was a young boy and moved to Bozeman to attend the MSU/Gallatin College Aviation Program. He graduated in 2014 and shortly thereafter started flight instructing at Summit Aviation. When he’s not flying, he’s usually playing with his two year old son, remodeling his house with his beautiful wife, or enjoying all of the outdoor activities Montana has to offer.


Drew Hansell – Flight Instructor


Drew Hansell is a Montana native from Shelby.  He came to Bozeman to study Chemical Engineering at Montana State University before discovering his true passion for flying airplanes like his grandfather did before him. He earned an Associates Degree in Aviation from MSU and is excited to be able to spend everyday living his dream flying. Drew is also very fond of the outdoors and likes to ski, golf, camp, and hike. He is happily married and just welcomed his first daughter in June 2015. 


Jacob Beshaler – Flight Instructor


Jacob is a small town Nebraska boy through and through.  Growing up on the family farm taught him how to work hard, and play even harder.  After high school Jacob attended the University of Nebraska Lincoln where he earned a Bachelor's degree in Business Administration.  Immediately after graduation he set sail for Bozeman Mt. to earn a second degree in aviation from MSU.  Jacob is up for just about any adventure including white water rafting, kayaking, climbing, snowboarding, wake-boarding, family time, and of course FLYING!!!


Peter Owenhouse – Flight Instructor


Peter is a Bozeman native who decided to pursue his dream of having an airplane cockpit as his office. He has d0one all his training right here at Summit. On the weekends he enjoys working in the family business which includes taking care of tigers and touring the U.S. with one of the largest illusion shows in the country.