Chris got out of work early Friday and met me for some flying. Chris has been training for a while now and has been delayed quite a bit by his job from traveling so he has just four flights completed so far. Today we added a couple more before sunset. Despite having not flown for weeks he did great, nailed his take offs and landings. We even got to play with the trimmers a bit. Way to go Chris!
More good news today as the bean field next to the runway was finally harvested making for a much larger LZ (landing zone). It can be a real hassle removing wings from the beans, they act like Velcro holding the lines firmly in their grasp.
Having completed everything except the written test requirement for his PPG2 rating, Jeff and I went on another short cross country flight this time around the nearby town of Brooklyn this morning. After landing we reviewed for the test. He then took the test right there on his phone and easily passed. Congratulations Jeff and happy flying!
Stuart stopped by a couple weeks ago to check things out after discussing the basics of with Paramotoring with David. He was there to observe the other students and see what all was involved in the process. Turns out one of the other students was an old friend of his from high school, Ryan. Ryan has since graduated and now Stuart has begun officially. I expect they will be flying together soon. Welcome Stuart!
Jeff met me at the hanger Monday afternoon with just 4 flights left to complete the requirements to earn his PPG2 rating. Conditions were good so he quickly made three short flights so we could make a longer cross country flight together.
Madcity Paragliding graduate Greg was at the airport as well and joined Jeff and I as we explored the countryside by air. What a great flight.
Moments after landing back at the airport Matt showed up with the same scenario as Jeff, just 4 flights left to complete his PPG2 requirements. As before, Matt made quick work of the first three flights so we could go on a longer flight afterwards. Greg was still there and again joined us for a longer flight around the field.
Greg and Matt are kitesurfing buddies already and now they can fly paramotors together too, if the wind isn’t strong enough for kiting that is.
Both Matt and Jeff have yet to complete the written test to be truly finished with training.
Record tow height to for Dimity! A line of clouds stretching from horizon to horizon approached as Dimity hooked into the tow line. As the line of clouds passed overhead he inflated his wing and we started the tow as normal. The breeze was light at the surface but grew stronger as Dimity gained altitude. By the time he had reached 1500’ the winds aloft were strong enough for me to slow the Jeep to a crawl while still paying out line rapidly.
We continued that pace for a quite a while, the Jeep creeping towards the end of the road and Dimity climbing towards the clouds. He got so high at one point he radioed down to confirm we had enough line to continue. When he finally released from the tow he had used up all but about 600’ of the 6000’ on the winch’s spool and reached an altitude of 2,940’ AGL!
Ken made several flights Sunday as he worked towards his P2 rating. The USHPA requires a minimum of 35 flights but allows us to count 10 PPG flights towards the total meaning he has just 11 left to complete his free flight training. Keep it up Ken!
Jan was also there with his drone taking video of the happenings. Watch for his foot
Already an experienced paraglider, Matt’s transition to motorized flight was pretty simple. A day in the classroom and a couple hours in the simulator and he was ready to give it a shot.
He had no problem bringing the wing up when it was time to take off and successfully pulled off a safe launch on his first attempt. The free flying pilot in him shown through as he ran leaning forward with his hands back. We altered this technique to a more ppg style launch with an upright run and the motor pushing him on his later flights. The USPPA allows us to count 15 of his free flights towards his requirements, meaning he only needs 10 flights to earn his PPG2 rating. Just 7 more to go and the written test of course.
Neil was over Friday morning as usual and made the last of his required flights. Ending the day with a total count of 26. All his skills mastered he only has the written test to finish in order to graduate. I’m expecting him to finish that today. Nice work Neil!
Jeff was out to the airport Thursday and Friday adding to his flight count. He has just 6 flights remaining to finish up.
Josh stopped in Friday afternoon to enjoy the evening as well.
He made a nice long flight around the area as we trained.
She did it! Sarah made her 25th flight without any assistance from me (other than pulling the starter cord). She mixed 2.5 gallons of fresh fuel, added half a gallon to the machine’s tank, transported the paramotor to the runway, set up the wind socks, laid out the wing, warmed up the motor, clipped into the wing, launched into the light headwind, flew a pattern and landed softly in the middle of the runway. Congratulations on earning your PPG2 rating Sarah!
After that she and I made a cross country flight together exploring the area by paramotors. Sarah put all her training to use as we toured the skies. She even got to experience her first “motor out” as the machine she was flying suddenly stopped running. No big deal, she handled it like a pro. Sarah landed safely on a nicely mowed lawn next to the main road so she wouldn’t have to walk far to be retrieved.
After talking to her over the headset and ensuring she landed safely I continued across the farm field to the hanger to get the Jeep. A few minutes later I was back at her side helping her load up the rig. The newly acquired Top80 miniplane has been acting up lately and it’s time to figure out why. Tomorrow it gets a carburetor rebuild first thing. Hopefully that will remedy the situation.
TJ and Jeff were also out flying Monday afternoon. Both added several flights and skills to their training. Way to go guys!
Ryan and Sarah met me at the field Thursday morning. It was cold and the runway is still covered in snow but that didn’t deter them from flying. Sarah added 4 flights to her log book bringing her to an impressive 19. Ryan had more time available Thursday morning and the weather cooperated letting him get all the required flights completed. He successfully pulled off two touch and goes and even made an extra flight just for fun. Way to go Ryan!
Next up for Thursday was towing at the airport with Curt and Mariyan. As part of Curt’s training for free flying Mariyan and I towed him several times down the runway. This is preparing him for high tows later where we will continue to work on his free flying skills. Keep it up Curt!
Friday morning Neil came over from Wawatosa. He was better prepared for the cold this time with some heavier gloves and had no issues keeping his hands warm unlike last week. He completed nearly all of the required skills and flights before it got too bumpy to fly comfortably. Just the written test, the midair restart of the motor and a handful of flights left to earn his PPG2 rating. Nice work Neil!
Sarah was back Friday afternoon for more training. We added alternative ways of steering as well as a few mock motor-out drills. Her husband and daughter were there to watch her fly too. They were really impressed with her skills. She finished the day with just one flight left to earn her PPG2 rating. We are saving that for a nice cross country flight together someday soon.
Finally it was Nick’s turn to fly. Nick had completed all his training a few days back but still needed to take and pass the PPG2 written test which he did. Tonight’s visit to the airport was to complete the paperwork and have some fun flying. Congratulations Nick!
Winter has come early! No big deal, we are still in full swing at Madcity Paragliding. Sarah, Ryan and Jeff all braved the cold and snow of the last few days to make some flights.
Ryan and Sarah have more than 15 flights now and are nearing the end of training. Soon they will be out flying on their own!
Sarah braved the cold and met me at the airfield this morning. The forecast was for light winds and more snow. The snowfall wasn't hard so visibility was fine. As is often the case, I made a short flight to check the conditions before giving the "go ahead" to Sarah. There were a few bumps but nothing dangerous so we got her rigged up and ready to fly.
Winds were light and directly across the runway so Sarah set up for a forward launch. She was a bit nervous about taking off across the runway instead of down it because that made the runway so short. However, once she gave it a shot she found herself airborne by the time she was about half way across the runway. Then it was a few laps around the field and back to the runway where she set it down safely.
Sarah went on to make five flights this morning and is now consistently landing on her feet. That brings her total flight count to eight, well on her way to earning her PPG2 rating. Way to go Sarah!
Monday and Tuesday Sarah, Ryan and Jeff all added flights to their logbooks. They are all gaining skill and confidence. Sarah has made three flights now and is noticeably more comfortable. Ryan has over 10 flights now! He rocked out six on Monday and even more on Tuesday.
Tuesday's weather was a bit of a challenge. With the first snowfall of the season leaving the runway covered in a wet white blanket we were forced to wait bit as the front worked its way out of the area and allowed the sky to mellow. Fortunately the gusts subdued enough to fly comfortably for the last couple hours of the day. Ryan logged another three flights and Sarah another two.
Wednesday Jeff stopped by my shop for some motor training. We tore into the Air Conception 130 to work on fine tuning the ignition timing after the rebuild. It's been said that every paramotor pilot will eventually become a mechanic.
Owner of MadCity Paragliding and Adventure Addict