Dave, Josh and Josh C spent the windy afternoon assembling new gear. For Josh it was a new Moster 185+ Miniplane. This involved not only putting it together and checking the harness set up with a hang test but also a mandatory two hour break in process that Josh C helped with.
Dave swapped the Large harness for a Medium on his new Moster-Mini. Then we packed his new reserve parachute and rigged it to his machine.
By the time all this was finished the wind had mellowed enough to get the wings out. Josh C headed to the field first to work on kiting. I introduced him to the forward launch which he figured out pretty quickly.
Next to the field was Dave. Because the sun was setting in just 15 minutes we strapped a strobe light to his rig so he could get a decent flight in. Both Dave and Josh C were out well after sunset playing with the sky.
Dave met me just after sunrise again and finished up his training by making his remaining 5 flights. At this point in the training process, all we were working on is improving the accuracy of his landings. He did great, 4 out of 5 landings were within 35’ of the target.
After that 25th graduation flight Dave took a nice long solo flight and explored the area all by himself. He really seemed to enjoy his new freedom. Congratulations Dave!!
Hooman and Arosh visited the hanger Sunday morning to learn more about the sport of paramotoring. They tried on motors and took turns hanging out in the simulator and got the answers to a lot of questions. I expect both to be flying by summertime.
Josh C finished up his PPG1 ground school training Sunday and after the wind calmed a bit we began wing handling training. He took to the wing naturally. His past skydiving experience really showed as he quickly grasped the basics of wing control.
Mike S joined us late in the day in hopes of making his first flight. Unfortunately the gusty winds lasted until nearly sunset which didn’t leave us enough daylight to get Mike his first flight. Spring weather is challenging.
Two new Macpara Chargers arrived Sunday morning for the school. I took the 23 meter out for its initial flight about 1/2 hour before sunset. So much fun, I love those wings!
Two new Moster 185+ Miniplanes arrived Monday. One for the school and one for Josh K, who recently graduated. Josh and I plan to assemble and break in these bad boys sometime this week. So much fun!
Robert tries out the simulator at the hanger Friday to get a feel for the machine. He is fortunate enough live nearby and have a very flexible schedule which will allow us to train anytime the weather permits. Like a lot of us drawn to PPG, Robert has longed to be a pilot for quite some time but couldn’t justify the cost of flying. When Robert discovered PPG he was excited to learn that it was not only the least expensive way to fly but statistically the safest he knew this was for him. Welcome Robert!
Once again Dave met me at the airport at sunrise for more flights. This has been a regular occurrence for us this past few days. He will fly until the conditions deteriorate mid morning then off to work. It sure is nice to be able to set your own schedule.
After that Chuck and I spent some time adjusting the set up on his Air Conception Nitro 200. Then we gave his wing a once over and found a couple of his lines were needing replacement, so we put them on his shopping list. After that Chuck and I headed over to the field for some kiting practice. Unfortunately the winds built rather quickly and we weren’t able to get as much done as we had hoped to. Spring weather is pretty volatile so it wasn’t totally unexpected. Next time we meet he will be flying!
Super productive last few days thanks to the favorable weather. The highlights include:
Josh completed his training Monday evening with 5 flights on his beautiful new Macpara Charger. Way to go Josh!!
Reon got to experience “night” flying with a strobe. I used the lights on the ATV to illuminate the runway for him as he touched down 29 minutes after sunset.
Jeff and Brent worked on some kiting and finished up their ground school training this weekend. Jeff scored a 100% on his PPG2 written test. Congratulations! Brent has yet to take the test but I’m confident he will also do great.
Dave has been a regular member of the Sunrise Flight Club having met me at the airport before the sun came up several times in the last few days. We went for a nice cross country flight this morning before the winds got too rowdy and he decided he should probably go to work. He has just 10 flights remaining to earn his PPG2 rating.
Josh C stopped in Sunday to get a first hand look at paramotoring. He’s been fantasizing about it for years and finally decided to do something about it. Welcome Josh, you’re going to love this!
Tomorrow begins before sunrise with Dave again. This time Chuck will be joining us for the fun too.
I’m so excited that spring is finally here!
Open House / Spring Gathering Saturday April 13
- Rain Date Sunday April 14 -
Madcity Paragliding will be hosting an informal gathering of past students and potential future students at a private airfield west of Sauk City. This is a way for the local pilots to connect with each other as well as dust off their machines and skills for the 2019 warm weather flying season. It is also the perfect opportunity for those interested in pursuing this amazing sport to get a firsthand look at all the gear and ask questions of the sports participants.
Time of the event will be determined by the 11th based on wind and weather. Please let me know if your thinking of attending.
SAVE THE DATE!
What do paragliders do when it’s too windy to fly? Well, in the winter we go kite skiing or ice climbing of course.
Sunday it was blowing over 20 all day with gusts occasionally over 30. No way we were flying in the air but the kite skiing was great! Matt, Dmitri and I spent hours racing around Lake Mendota. Matt was impressive, he pulled off several huge spinning jumps including one right over me as I was picking myself up from a wreck. So cool!
Monday was forecast to be another blown out day so I made plans to take Phil ice climbing at Wyalusing State Park. The wall was in big this year, lots of routes to choose from. First I lead a moderate line to get to the top of the wall where I set a top rope for a more challenging section. Then we spent the rest of the afternoon taking turns up the steepest part of the ice. The climb was about 80’ of nearly vertical ice. One really cool thing about this area is that it is right on the Mississippi River, just a couple of train tracks between the belay station and the water. The view is wonderful looking over the river to Iowa.
Spring weather can be frustrating for paragliding so it’s nice to other activities to keep your adrenaline pumping.
Saturday’s weather went from bad to worse but that didn’t stop Brent and Jeff from training. In fact, we were able to get all of the PPG1 ground school tasks completed. We went over preflight, starting the motor safely, visual signals and all the simulator drills. We also watched the Risk and Reward DVD as well as prepare for and take the PPG1 written test. Both Jeff and Brent scored 100% the test. Way to go guys!
Next up is more wing handling on a favorable day and then it’s flying time!
Friday was definitely Dave’s day. Conditions were perfect and and he was spot on with his skills.
After a little kiting to warm up his wing handling muscles we prepared for an afternoon of flying. I jumped up first to test the sky for our soon to be new pilot. It was still pretty early in the afternoon so the bumps were kinda big and I got tossed around a bit. We decided to hold off a while and let the air settle down some before attempting to send Dave aloft.
After a 45 minute refuel and snack break we headed back to the runway to have a go at Dave’s first flight. The winds had definitely calmed a little and everything looked great. We set up for a forward launch into the light breeze right down the runway. On Dave’s first attempt the wing came up nicely and after a short taxi run I gave him the “FULL THROTTLE!” command over the headset. He responded by gently squeezing the controller and moments later Dave left the ground.
Once airborne he quickly became accustomed to the controls and made three well managed laps around the airport before bringing the paramotor safely back to the the earth in the center of the runway. Way to go Dave!!
He made a few more flights that afternoon before calling it a day and retiring to the hanger exited for the next flying day. With daylight savings starting Sunday, suddenly weekdays after work are now a real possibility. Now if only the weather will cooperate...
Owner of MadCity Paragliding and Adventure Addict