Ben’s First Flight!
Ben contacted me after trying to self train for months without success. He had good kiting skills and was pretty comfortable with the motor he got from Blackhawk so the training process was somewhat accelerated but I still covered everything in the syllabus to be sure he didn’t miss anything. As they say “you don’t know what you don’t know”.
Before the trip to Colorado, Ben and I made the first attempt to get him flying his rig. His technique was great but when I told him to go to full throttle the machine just didn’t have the push needed. Despite being a three blade 210cc machine it just doesn’t push that hard. Before we parted for the day I had him try on my Parajet Maverick with the Moster 185+ on it. He was blown away by how light and powerful it was compared to his Blackhawk.
We got together the day I returned from the Colorado PG trip. Out of frustration he sold his Blackhawk while I was away. The plan for tonight was to use the Parajet. Even though is was a hot, humid, no wind day he pulled off a clean launch on his first attempt with the Maverick. With his family watching from the ground he made several laps around the airport and with my guidance landed in the middle of the runway on his feet. Congratulations Ben!!
Joe was also out to the airport that evening and made two perfectly executed flights.
Glenn continued his training with a refresher in the simulator and kiting with a practice throttle as well as time wing handling with his machine on his back. The additional weight of the paramotor and loss of agility proved to be challenging but he did great. I anticipate him flying next time we meet.
Joe’s First Flight! ...
Joe has been “on call” for a few days. He’s completed everything needed to prepare him to make his first flight and now it’s up to the weather. We’ve been waiting for the perfect conditions and last night a window of opportunity presented itself. He rolled in as the gusts were settling and by the time we were all set up the sky had calmed. After a couple practice launches we got ready to give it a real shot. He did awesome! Pulled off a clean takeoff, managed the wing and throttle well while in flight and set the brand new Parajet Maverick down safely in the middle of the runway. Congratulations Joe!!
In other news:
Josh was back and training again after a several month break with his big Green Eagle. That thing is a beast! Pushing the limits of the ultralight weight requirements of 254 pounds with a two cylinder, four stroke, fuel injected Koehler engine. It towers above me, well over six feet high. This is going to be fun to fly!
Saturday was a towing day. It was pretty windy and nobody was rushing to be first to go up. So as is often the case I found myself in the familiar roll of Wind Dummy, hooking into the tow line to go aloft and check the sky for the others. It was admittedly bumpy down low but above a couple hundred feet it smoothed out considerably. Deb, Pie, his Uncle Ted, Brian and Nick a.k.a. “Tiger” all took tandem flights with Mariyan. Adam and David both caught nice thermals practicing for our upcoming paragliding trip. Ken and I stayed busy running the winch.
Matt E got a bunch of kiting in this week.
Pat also spent a couple hours kiting as well as some ground school lessons.
Ok, time to prep the RV for next week’s paragliding trip!
Matt D has been driving over from Iowa regularly the past couple weeks. Wednesday morning the winds were light but the perfect direction for the sledding hill. Matt managed to catch a few puffs and made a few short hops. I was pleased with his control and decided to give him a big shove on his next attempt. That was just what he needed. He left the ground near the top of the hill and stayed airborne all the way to the field at the bottom. There he executed a nice flare and landed softly. He was now ready for the real thing.
Then it was off to the hanger to go over a few things in the simulator. After that we set up on the runway for his first flight. A couple of trial runs then he was off! He did great and after a few laps, set it down safely in the soft field. Congratulations Matt!!
Some of the other milestones at Madcity Paragliding this last week include:
Anne and her sitting Suzy made tandem flights with Mariyan. Anne PG and Suzy PPG. Both loved it and had a great time.
Nick also made a tandem PF flight with Mariyan. I towed them up to nearly 2000’ before they released from the tow line and chased thermals all the way back to Joel’s runway.
Glen and Eric made more flights Thursday evening in Sauk City. The conditions were ideal, warm with a slight breed. They really enjoyed the calmer air. Their first flights were pretty bumpy by comparison.
Ben was over from Milwaukee to knock out the indoor portion of the training. He’s already had a great day gliding down the hill so next up for him is his first flight, Exciting!
Saturday’s north wind meant a big group at the sledding hill. Mariyan was there with Nick and Greg. I was there with Tony and Eric. Dave and Dennis were there too.
Eric got a new Parajet Maverick with the Moster 185 on it. The distributor drove it up to us the same day! He spent a couple hours breaking it in with the help of his wife Jade. The next evening he took it for its initial flight. Not sure if it was the new paramotor but he did awesome. Landing softly on his feet every time. Way to go Eric!
Eric and Jade from Tomahawk met me at the sledding hill Saturday morning for some downhill training. The wind was pretty cross but Eric still managed to get a few short flights in. Just the thing he needed before we hopefully make a motor flight later today. Jade and I worked on kiting in the field at the bottom of the hill too.
Next to arrive at the hill was Glen from LaCrosse. After a little warm up session it was his turn to catch the wind when it turned north. The breeze was still much less north than forecast but Glen was able to taste flight enough to prepare him for a motor flight.
Then came Ben from Milwaukee. By the time he got to the hill with his family in tow the wind was much more reliable. He managed to repeatedly get the best flights of the day. His oversized wing helped keep him aloft.
Conditions were pretty gusty all day but Glen, Eric and I hoped there would be a calming of the weather before sunset so we could get them airborne. While we were waiting for the bumps to calm, Glen, Jade and Eric all took a spin in the trike. With Jade’s bad knee this maybe her best option.
It did calm somewhat but it was still kind of rowdy when I made my test flight just 1/2 hour before sunset. Knowing the conditions would be safe, Eric and Glen decided who would make the first attempt. Eric was chosen and we prepared him for his first flight. He did great despite the less than ideal conditions. He did everything as rehearsed wonderfully with his wife, Jade, videoing the entire flight. Congratulations Eric!
Unfortunately Glen would have to wait until the next morning to make his attempt. So, shortly after the 5:22am sunrise we met with that plan. The grass was a bit wet from dew so we laid out the tarp to help keep the wing dry and light. Winds were light at the surface therefore he set up for a forward launch. On just his second attempt he successfully launched into the morning sky, made the preplanned laps around the field and set it down nicely on his feet. Way to go Glen!
The rest of the week was just as rewarding. Some of the highlights include-
Matt E, Matt D and Corey began training.
Pat stopped by for an orientation, he begins training soon.
Alex and I worked on a new controller for the winch. We tested it on Sunday and it worked great for a little while. We just need to beef it up a bit and then it will be ready for full time use, I hope.
Sunday afternoon was towing in Sauk City. Dimitry had the best flight of the day and found himself a nice thermal that took him to nearly 4000’.
Sunday evening it was off to Joel and Jon’s runway for some PPG action. Mariyan took Dave from Hawaii on a nice long tandem flight around the Wisconsin river valley. Dave’s friend Reon flew with them on his paramotor.
These long warm days are a gift. We are able to get so much done, it’s awesome!
Owner of MadCity Paragliding and Adventure Addict