Twin Cities Helicopters

This is meant to be a quick, at-a-glance reference for people interested in the helicopters that frequently grace our skies in the Twin Cities. If this page is of interest to you, you'll probably like Minneapolis/St. Paul Aviation Spotting, MilAirMSP, Advisory Circular Minneapolis-St. Paul, and ADSB Exchange.

Updates, suggestions, and corrections are welcome and encouraged - feel free to shoot me an email.

ADSBx Tracks

For each of the lists below, click on the heading to view a tracking map at ADSB Exchange, or if you prefer, track State Patrol, news, and medevac helicopters with this link.

TV News

The major Twin Cities TV networks (KARE, KMSP, KSTP, and WCCO) share a single helicopter, which is branded for WCCO, wears the registration N444TV. It now shows up on some flight trackers as N163RP. The aircraft is based at Flying Cloud (FCM) in Eden Prairie.

KSTP's pilot and flight program retired in March, 2021; they now use the pool aircraft.

State Patrol

The Minnesota State Patrol operates a pair of Bell 407 helicopters; they're recognizable with white on the front and maroon on the tail. They're frequently seen overhead assisting local agencies. Tail numbers are N118SP and N119SP.

Medevac

There are three companies that regularly operate air care or medevac flights in the area.

Life Link III
Dark blue with yellow and green striping AW 119s.
N351LL, N352LL, N353LL, N354LL, N356LL, N357LL, N358LL, N359LL, N360LL

North Memorial
White with red belly AW109s.
N10NM, N28NM, N30NM, N35NM, N42NM, N71NM, N81NM, N90NM, N91NM

Mayo
Dark blue EC-145.
N145EC, N145MC, N145SM, N145SZ

US CBP

US Customs and Border Protection has an AS350 based at STP airport, tail number N3949A, which is white with a dark blue diagonal stripe on the rear of the fuselage. They do not usually reveal their position with ADS-B tracking.

MN Army National Guard

The Minnesota Army National Guard operates UH-60 Black Hawks out of STP, and less frequently in the Twin Cities, the twin-rotor CH-47 Chinook. These don't reliably show up on flight trackers, but make frequent appearances on MilAirMSP.

Metro Mosquito Control

The Metropolitan Mosquito Control District operates a fleet of helicopters that drop pellets to prevent mosquitos from reaching adulthood. Their public schedule can be found here.

Minnesota Helicopters

Offering sight-seeing tours, flying lessons, and the like with a variety of aircraft.

N107EH, N134AA, N190H, N4170M, N7048C, N7DQ, N7195E, N854WS

AV8 Flight School

A flight school based at Flying Cloud (FCM) in Eden Prairie.

N241HB, N508CX, N566RB