TJ rolled into the airport about 3 o’clock Monday nervous and excited. We have been working towards this day for a while but today it was going to happen. This is the time we combine all the training and turn it into actual flight.
We started with some kiting with a trainer throttle, then kiting with the motor on his back to get warmed up. Then I jumped up into the sky to test the conditions for him. It was a bit bumpier than I like for a first flight so we decided to let Chris add another flight to his logbook.
Chris did great. He was a little rusty after taking several weeks off because of a business trip but like riding a bike it quickly came back to him. Nice work Chris!
Next it was TJ’s turn. The conditions had settled a bit and were now just right. We got him rigged up and pointed down the runway. After a quick review of the flight plan it was time to give it a go. He put his headphones down and took a moment to compose himself, we checked the radios and then I started the motor for him. Then he did exactly what we’ve been practicing. He brought the wing up cleanly, added some throttle, released the A’s, inspected the wing quickly, waited for my “FULL THROTTLE !!” command in his ear, slowly squeezed the throttle lever to full and ran. Moments later he was airborne for the first time on his own! He made a few laps around the field to gain confidence in the controls then set it down safely in the middle of the runway. Congratulations TJ!!
A little while later he made his second flight with more confidence to complete the requirements for his PPG1 rating.
Several others were at the field last night to fly around and witness this momentus occasion, three of them were named Josh. Robert and Dave were there too and made flights as well.
Earlier in the day, Sarah and I were dusting off her kiting skills. She hasn’t kited a paraglider in 15 years. It took a little while but she was keeping the wing overhead successfully before we stopped for lunch. Way to go Sarah!
Owner of MadCity Paragliding and Adventure Addict