Tuesday, October 24, 2006

Oh My... Oh My

Well as you might already know I am now paragliding on a regular basis. With 17 flights under my belt I still feel like I know very little but it's starting to make sense. I finally got my harness adjusted to my liking and am finding it gives me better control. Most of my flights have been short what is called a "sled ride" meaning no lift just gliding. But the odd flight I have found some lift and felt the power of "going up" I have to say it is most remarkable. Finding and staying in the lift has been a challenge but one I want to learn. I have met some great folks while involved in this sport. It was my brother Derek that got me started. He wanted to show me this new passion he had found and I was a willing driver (to save time retrieving the vehicle). I spent the summer watching the boys and getting several photo's of them but knew I needed to try this myself. Next Derek asked me if I wanted to come to Mara Lake and help drive for a advanced maneuvers course. I jumped at the chance to see more and was offered a tandem ride as a thank you. Well the view was amazing but the spirals left me nauseated (I never did do well at the midway) but I knew I had to try this. So in Sept off I went to take basic training. I have to say it was tough and I thought I would never get it. But we got three flights in and I was hooked. We where rained out on one of the days of training so I called and went back to get a little more confidence under my belt. They where great and so was the weather and we got four flights in one day. It was really good for me. I left the first time feeling kinda uneasy but the additional training left me feeling confident. Three days after my return I got a call from Derek, the conditions where perfect. We drove up to Little Dome and I did my first launch here with several of the local pilots and equipped with a radio and with one pilot on the LZ. All went well and my first flight was a success I was greatful to have the radio and did what I was told as I approached the LZ. The rest is history as they say.