fair weather pilots once again were fooled by the local
FV weather – the “smart ones”, Claudia,
Peter, Jeremy W and Patrick were all rewarded with bright
sun and very little wind. While P & C were carving
turns, Patrick got to try out his new MSR snow shoes;
unfortunately Jeremy was forced to suffered with his
“old school” shoes. The extra delays eventually
cost him and Patrick their flights. Once they had conceded
to the wind gods, I thought that I would take the quick
way down. It was quite difficult to kite in my snow
shoes (in 3 feet of powder) but with a little push I
was on my way: no problem to stay up, but I needed a
little more clothes if I wanted to fly longer. More
action on the way home when a tree fell across the road
taking out the hydro lines with a big light show.
the early birds, Ryan, Peter, Claudia and Andrei were
doing their thing up Sumas, the rest of us were kiting
at the Sumas Dykes in light East wind. It was fun to
see the boys and girl land at the Dykes – a first
for Deimos. Next, we headed up Bridal for a couple of
sled rides, Tanya went first, followed by the rest of
us Patrick, Laura, Wil, Nic, Wally and finally Jeremy
C and myself on tandem. Patrick and Tanya were testing
if their wings were spiral stable – Patricks wing
passed but Tanya stop the test before the glider was
at full speed – a smart thing to do whenever you
don’t feel ready. Congrat’s to Laura for
completing her novice rating and Wally on his first
solo flight. Our final flights were cut short by darkness,
but Tanya got off (just in time?) for the final flight
of the day (official sun set at 4:30).
super fun night of eating, talking, speeches, awards
and watching endless paragliding videos – we counted
about 40 people present – a great way to end this
years paragliding season.
wet day in the Valley: Laura, Claudia, Wil, Jeremy W
and C, Andrei, sister Judy, Ken and I where hopeful
and decided to drive to Bridal to check things out.
It seemed like we should go for a hike to get above
the clouds and out of the drizzle. During our hike things
looked a little brighter, but by the time we got to
launch it was more like rain than drizzle and no sign
of the LZ. No flying but still fun just to go for a
a horrible flying day, Chiu, Paddy, Andrei, Wil, Peter
and Bora all join me for another successful HAGAR study
Don’t forget; go write this exam before your new
knowledge vaporizes. Good luck!
was Laura, this time, which fired me up to go flying.
Wally, Jeremy W, Wil and Zenon rounded out our group.
Great launches and apparently perfect landings from
all, so this left Zenon and I for our first Titanic
flight. On our next flights it was time for some weaning:
Jeremy went first, followed by Wally and I, and finally
Zenon, Laura and Wil.
Zenon did his first frontal and small spiral, but it
was Laura that showed the boys how it should be done.
Bonus points for Wil for his first solo launch. My lecture
to Laura’s on how to land safely, was cut short
by Wil’s (“I need a license plate on my
butt”) landing. Many thanks to Wally for the double
rides up. It looks like one more time out and Zenon,
Laura and Wil will be signed off to fly solo!
Mission Hill then
slow start with a crowded finish. After introductions
we headed over to the Mission Hill to do some kiting
and hope that the East wind would die down. After a
few hours it was time to move on: the vote was to hike
up to Sumas. It was “bad news bears” all
the way there but still we pressed on! Only Bora got
lost on the way into launch.
On launch Paddy and I gave a short kiting session (no
harness) then I called off the day - still gusting up
to 30 mph. The next problem was how to fit all of us
into one booth at the sushi place – Clif, Andrew
and Elena #2, Andrei, Elena #1 and son, Peter, Claudia,
Wil, Laura, Jeremy and Charlotte, Nicolas and guests,
Zenon, Walter and finally Bora (our newest tandem instructor
direct from Turkey). PS don't park in the lot after
hours, apparently Bora has been entered in the "
next time we will tow your vehicle list" .
Bridal and Woodside
conditions today: East and West wind, low clouds so
I deemed Bridal the best choice. After some kiting exercises
– we headed up to launch. One of the new cross
ditches was a little too deep and damaged my truck nicely,
bending the bumper up 45 degrees (probably $300+ to
repair – it won’t take much longer before
I’ll pay to fix the road myself). The remains
of a stolen car was blocking the road, initiating our
next adventure. A couple of tow lines and I was able
to move the car out of the way. Once on top it was still
too cloudy to launch, but Woodside was now in the sun
– so down we go.
A relaxed atmosphere at Woodside without the other school
– Tonya had a nice launch, followed by Clifton
(on his wet Accent). Meanwhile Peter and I geared up
for a stellar tandem flight (including a short trip
to the “white room”). With no drivers, it
was Tonya’s turn to fly with a potential top landing
planned. This did not happen, however I got to watch
a very poor top crash from another pilot (inches from
my glider) and later a couple of hang gliders launch
(in good form). Some last minute truck shuffling and
I was granted the last flight of the day (on a wet Body
Perfect conditions all day meant lots of SIV action.
Our “shot gun” friend was quite friendly
actually (except for his scary stories about lions
and tigers and bears). Alex was first up and set the
tone by doing almost every acro move in his collection,
followed by Andrew, Tonia, Claudia, Mad Matt, Arten,
Peter and finally Jeremy. The first set of maneuvers
were on the easy scale, just to get the “juices”
flowing: (wing overs, asyemtricals, front tucks and
search for stall). The next set was where the real
acro starts: slow spins, fast spins, full stall, spiral
dives, full stalls, Croissant, and even SAT attempts
by Mad Matt; but still no wet pilots. Arten must have
been a little to excited after his maneuvers and decided
to land short (really short). Ted estimated one last
flight left in his gas tank and we sent Alex up for
his final set – the flying part was perfect
but he also was afflicted with the rare “Arten”
judgment syndrome. The first load made it in to dock
without any issues, but the second crew fell just
a few km’s short and required a tow in by Larry.
Another fun, fun day! Thanks to Clif for helping out
all day with the filming.
The next SIV clinic will
be in Spring 2009 – I can’t wait!
MIssion Hill, Woodside
usual, we started out at the Misson Hill, will Elena,
Jeremy W, Clif, and Jeremy C all doing well. Then off
to Woodside for a few flights. Tonia was first in the
air with her new Deimosian style launch, followed by
Andrew, and our “American friends” Peter
and Claudia. We were in a hurry to start flying so I
forgot to show Clif the Harvest Dykes LZ and made him
miss his first flight – the wind was a little
too cross anyhow. On the next flight, the same crew
flew again, but this time with the Bridal work crew
(Chiu and others). Most pilots climbed well above launch,
but not for long. Finally it was time for Clif’s
(second) flight – I tried to catch him on my Obsession
but he was just a little too fast on his Body Guard
(time for a bigger wing for Clif). We needed to do one
last retrieval, and since conditions were still on,
Clif had a chance to fly again, but this time I was
able to fly with him and guide him in to Harvest Dykes
– a great way to end the day.
Mission Hill, Bridal
conditions at our Mission Hill, perfect for our newest
students Nicolas and Wally. Zenon show the boys how
it's done with a few high flights off the North Hill;
but only Nicolas pulled off the other Mission Hill "high"
flights. Next, it was time to see if Nicolas can manage
his first solo flight. Well, three aborts (just to get
rid of the EBE-GEG-BEES) and he had a near perfect launch
and landing. Our next launches were better for Zenon,
but both students missed the LZ. Congrats on Nicolas
first two solo flights! It's confirmed PG launches are
more exciting the PPG. A Titanic and solo spiral dive
and Zenon is done his Deimos novice maneuvers - probably
next Sunday and the SIV clinic (Oct 19th).
Slightly cross but generally great condition today
for Wally, Laura and Wil. Had some fun with Wil with
his first spin landing!
Light conditions today - great for Clifton and Wally
to work on their launches - a special thanks to Tania
for her help.
flat day - but full of adventure and full on acro SIV
action. See Deimos student forum (private) for the full
last minute effort was put together to show some English
tourists a good time. Kevin helped me with a couple
of tandems, while Jeremy did a few sled rides; Jeremy's
last ride required a little extra hiking (full story
coming soon…), we missed the last launch window
by a few minutes and had to drive down.
Mission Hill, Sumas
East meant great conditions for my newest students Nicolas
and Wally at the Mission hill, but after a couple of
hours I thought that it was time to head up to Sumas
launch. Ryan, Andrei and Paddy join us for the one hour
hike in. The place was very over grown, so a small work
party was started and soon the North launch was ready
(with only Andrew willing). One tough abort and finally
Andrew was soaring in the light East wind, soon followed
by Ryan and lastly Paddy (going up). Nicolas and I made
one lame attempt, but the wind was most gone for us–
so better to hike out. Fun stuff – we need some
hikers to complain and get the second gate relocated
– maybe one day?
fun day at Bridal with all pilots excelling. Our first
flights were rather uneventful, with maybe the exception
of Andrew's launch, everyone else (Wil, Claudia, Peter
and Ted) all having extended sled rides. When I saw
the Shane and Karin arrived, I decided to spice things
up with a U-Turn syncro acro show (Shane and I both
fly the same size Obsession, but even though I’m
a “little” heavier, I could not catch up
to him to do our wing walking; we did however put on
a nice spiral, wing over show finishing with a low SAT
and death spiral. Tonia was most helpful when she offered
to drive the last truck down – many thanks. More
SIV from Claudia and Wil meant that they finished their
novice course. Congrats!
Mission Hill, Woodside
conditions at the Mission hill: with Laura, Wil, and
Wally all getting some air time. Next we headed to Woodside
for a few high flights: Laura was off her game and decided
to drive down, and Wil was also not looking so sharp
– wierd? Wally and I got to play with the new
DVD camera – this should be a nice option for
those students that want to record the full effects
of a Titanic or pleasant XC flight. Next, Wil aced a
high wind launch and climbed up about 800’ followed
by my newest student Jeremy C. and I on tandem. I think
I have most of the bugs worked out on the camera / DVd
system (missing one cable today and could not burn a
conditions at Bridal ( too wet to even do some kiting),
so we practiced our simulated tree rescues. Our newest
student Stephen did great, as did Claudia and Peter.
student conditions tonight for old time student Tom
Chromy, Elena, Claudia and Peter.
slow start, but the night was still early. Thorge arrived
on time, but Julie was late, which pushed out our ETA
by 30 minutes – precious minutes when you plan
to fly the Chief. Wil, Peter, Brian and Manu were ready
for the hike, but not cancer man (Thorge), he was convinced
that it was impossible. Manu offered his sherpa services
and still Thorge was no way to be found! “Du fonda
de hunt”! When we arrived, conditions were absolutely
perfect, but ten minutes later, the wind was almost
gone. Wil and I aced our tandem, followed by (I’m
not hiking down) Peter and Thorge. Brian was not rewarded
for his ATC duties and barely escaped the hill alive
(but that’s another story).
Part Du: Deirdre in the dark (#18 I think). Thorge
was challenged to his max, with more complaints that
it was impossible, and yells of “I’m falling”
(but never really falling); but three hours later
Peter, Wil, Thorge and myself topped out. Probably
the most dangerous part was the drive home at 1am.
Bridal, Elk , Bridal
conditions at 7am meant the Claudia wanted to fly! And
she did – a new early morning record for Deimos.
We had a “quick” breakfast then headed off
to hike Elk (with Andre and Jeremy). East conditions
but still no problems launching. I think we ran into
Max trying to beat his record of six trips up and down
Elk - unassisted even! Back to Bridal : It was my great
pleasure to give local hiker Walter his first tandem
and hopefully start his training soon ( I think that
he even added gas to my truck after he offered to drive
it down!), followed by giving Jonathon’s friend
(the beautiful Monica) a very smooth tandem (with Diane
as our wing lady for most of our glide out – welcome
back guys! Feeling like a acro show, I talked Andrew
and Peter into doing their first B-stalls – well
tandems and nice flights for all advance students, with
a huge day of firsts – Peter with his first top
landing, Claudia’s first frontal, Laura’s
first spiral, and the list went on and on…(but
I can’t remember now!). We finished the day with
dinner at Earl’s and watching paragliding videos
up on launch and later camping there.
full three days of flying (starting on Friday with Claudia,
Thorge, Peter, Laura, Jeremy, Will, Andrew (of course),
Chiu (of course), Veronica (of course, but it’s
her job) and a few tandems.
great night for a hike: Andrew was ready to fly after
an afternoon of climbing, when Patti and I showed up.
A quick check of our LZ indicated a much smaller LZ
than the old days – lots of construction going
on in the first field. SW wind 5-10 on launch meant
that it’s time to fly! I was a little too fast
out of the starting gate and forgot to hook up my speed
bar. I tried for about a minute to do this safely with
one hand but eventually had to used both hands to complete
the job in about ten seconds (the air was a little too
weird -9.5 m/s to let the wing fly free style). Andrew
was also too quick, and had a riser twist. I guess Patti
does not win any awards for launch instructor! The landing
was a little rough at the last 20 feet but no problem
for my Obsession; Andrews landing was “Style ling”;
but Patti’s seem to have some issue with wind
direction and had to do some “jail time”.
Half price food at the Copper House was the icing on
our mini adventure.
great day of flying. Erica and I lead the attack, with
her best screams, followed by Brad and Thom. Veronica
and Clif arrived at 2pm, after yet another private training
session – ready to fly solo. The conditions were
a little too lofty for Clif, so another driver was born.
Second flights for Patti, Laura, Wil and Thorge went
well, so time for the big guy to fly. A less than perfect
take off (The Uturn BodyGuard -DHV1) saves the day,
followed by a nice standup landing.
student conditions all day – meant lots of exciting
flying for my Red Robin friends. A pretty big turn out
for a Friday with Andrew, Chiu, Veronica, Brad, Laura,
Clif, Little Dan, Wil and Thorge. Some aborts were required,
occasionally, and some fast landings, but a really nice
day to play hooky. Congrat to Thorge for completing
his Novice rating – next time you see him you
can ask him about his first “baby” spiral.
Will and I also had some fun SATing around.
conditions today - with both Clif and Ian getting a
few flights from the top of the hill. Wil and Laura
also joined in the fun with Wil showing off a few of
his new tricks - I missed the show but saw the aftermath.
conditions for our newest student Clif - another Jedi
Iron Mt, Bridal
to tour the Valley: first Fairview - too windy, Hedley
– too windy. Next was Iron Mt (again). Perfect
conditions this time. I launch and within minutes was
near the clouds (4000’), hard not to go up actually.
A baby spiral and I was back at launch. Art “the
fearless” was quick on the draw and was on big
ears before you could say “going up”. After
watching Art zip out of sight, down wind, it was decided
to head back home. Great conditions every where in the
Fraser Valley, this time with Zenon, Patrick, Andrew,
and Peter getting high, while Thorge and I flew tandem.
Finally Claudia and Jeremy (tandem) got to fly. High
light of the week was seeing our first cougar near Princeton,
just a few minutes out of town.
strong winds – great. The next (hopeful) plan
was to find a low elevation soaring site. Iron Mt. was
our best choice, however, after a couple of quick test
flights it was clear that we were not allowed to fly
today. Art and myself proved this a couple of times.
Back to Hedley. The Valley winds were calm now, but
strong gusts on launch about every 15 minutes. Art “the
fearless” launched, clamming it was “smooth”.
A few minutes later Patrick tried to fly but was quickly
grounded (full story coming soon) complete with a movie.
After about an hour or two I decided we were done, but
for some weird reason felt compelled to fly down. Lots
of big ear action help keep my wing over my head –
another dumb flight to add to my collection. We finished
the day with three Paragliding DVD's at Art's "club
Woodside and Bridal
day started out as planned, but then quickly changed.
Our first tandem flights with Jon and Wil were perfect
(over an hour long in Brad’s case) - too windy
for most of the other students however. Sometime while
we were airborne, our newest student was caught by another
school and never released – quite unbelievable
really. We gave up searching for him, until finally
we heard he was kiting a wing at the Ranch. Our next
group of tandems were forced to return home, due to
a huge accident near Boston Bar, so in the end only
one tandem passenger for Brad and me. Nice launches
from the remaining Deimosian’s: Zenon, Chiu, Laura,
Wil, Andrew, Thorge, with Jeremy getting the best flight
of his life (about 45 minutes).
Andrew, Jeremy and Thorge were keen to fly – so
time for a mini road trip. Rain everywhere until Princeton,
but in the end it was too windy to fly: light wind,
too light to even kite in, followed by 40kph wind for
one minute (repeat every 15 minutes).
bo tt ps
conditions today, no big surprise with the huge towing
Cu’s everywhere. I set a new slow record driving
up to launch (knowing that we would have to parawait
a few hours); but eventually it mellowed out enough
to fly solo. The air had a nervous component to it that
we could not ignore – only small collapses but
not much fun. Chiu made one wrong turn and was on his
way to the LZ, while I easily remained out in front
of launch. We both experienced interesting air in the
LZ but no real problems while landing. The Jag man (Thorge)
was our volunteer driver – thanks J-Man.
2008 Burnaby Mt. champ was off her game today, with
a harsh take off and hard landing – learning how
to fly tandems can be tough! Wil got to experience his
first frontal, but on a DHV1 wing it’s no big
deal. My newest students, Stephen and Nicolas got a
full show of good, bad and ugly take offs, but in the
end only Nicolas got to take his first flight off Bridal.
A fun day of slid rides with Stein and Brad having fun
on their tandems and solos; Andrei, Thorge, Peter, Andrew,
Tania and Claudia all doing well
of my favorite BM nights with almost everyone having
great flights from the top of the hill. Peter, and Andrew
set the bar high for best glides, but no match for my
Obsession – setting and re-seting a new best kite
record. US Black Mt. champ, Patrick, opened his Golden
with great expectations, but was quickly relegated because
he hit the trees. Andrei was also rejected for similar
problem. Shane, in a desperate bid to clear the path,
grounded out hard, but not harder that Peter putting
in a huge team effort. My newest instructor Veronica,
showed the boys that girls can play too, and edge me
out for the Solo BG award (and $25 hard cash). Wil (pilot)
and I (the pusher) teamed up one more time to blow the
P & A team off the hill with a huge effort started
at just 50’ off launch winning ($50 hard cash).
After congratulations and other awards, we crashed the
Mt Shadow for beer and burgers. Another $150 was raised
for the Bridal Falls Web Camera – many thanks!
east, strong east, no wind strong west, no wind strong
east...but somehow Bradley and I completed our tandems
with our very cute passengers. It took a record amount
of parawaitng, but in the end the flights were quite
nice, however our landing were a little to fast at times.
Only half of the Deimos students were lucky to fly –
you had to be in the right place at the right time today.
added just the right spice to our day: we started out
with a hike up to upper (took just less than an hour),
and then later lots of fun acro at lower Bridal. The
first launches went well; except for Patti (his NK1
seems to have a stall issue or something). Bradley demonstrated,
very clearly, why jumping into your harness is a bad
plan. After our tandems were completed, it was time
for more fun – Andrew completed his first solo
spiral to complete his deimos Novice rating, while Chiu
and I got to do some asymmetrical 369s and a Coconut
spin (by accident sort of) followed by a low spiral
dive. After our customary dinner at the Wild Cat, Chiu,
Bradley and I settle in to a night of watching advance
acro (Jocky’s latest DVD).
conditions with lots for top to bottom flights for the
boys and girls (Andrei, Ryan, Elena, Thorge, Andrew,
time it was Patti’s turn to take the spot light
on take off, in the air and on landing – check
out the Deimos Forum for the full story.
Good launches from everyone else, Art, Tania, Chiu,
Laura, Thorge and Wil. Chiu had the best flight with
his first ever cross country flight to Cheam and almost
a quick visit to Grouse, we raced out to the Valley
to meet Thorge, Mike and Jamie, and later Andrei. Very
nice conditions for all flights, with Thorge complaining
that my Tandem with Jamie was getting too high (1200
m). Andrei showed us how to not do a Asymetrical and
then Thorge showed us how to do one correctly. Another
great day in the Valley.
easy launch conditions today with Thorge, Eduardo, Laura
and Art getting lots of great flights. I ended the day
with a fun titanic flight with Laura – and yes
she refused to scream!
big last minute turnout (Laura, Andrei, Elena, Alek,
and new student Ian) with a special guess apperance
from Matt Ashley.
efforts to be on time were almost rewarded with a nice
ticket from the RCMP, but in the end it did not even
matter ‘cause Andrew was 30 minutes late anyhow.
Everyone did well in the light conditions (Ed, Wil,
Laura, Andrew, Andrei and Chiu). The high light was
Andrew's first unsupervised, end of the day, no wind,
super scary, why do I have to be in Tom's weening program
at just 29 flights, launch (with only Tom's Dad checking
his lines). Once again the LZ pool was in the wrong
place for most of the landings.
fun night at Deifenbaker with Thorge, Andrew, Alex,
Claudia, Tonia and Deniz showing off their stuff.
Woodside and Bridal
low clouds at Bridal meant a trip up to Woodside. Windy
conditions on launch, so time for some hacky sack. About
an hour later, it “mellowed out” enough
for me and Daryl to do our tandem. Patrick launched
next and discovered that he needs to practice his speed
bar set up. After lunch, we tried Bridal, just the intermediate
students were on deck: Peter, Patrick, Andrei and a
visiting Japanese Pilot. This time I got to test out
Patricks Golden II (very nice wing). The first flights
went well so up came the rest: Thorge, Claudia, and
great day of flying especially for the girls. Laura
spec’d out at over 3500’ and Claudia had
her best landing missing the spot landing by just a
few feet. I mixed it up with Andrew (with a customary
Titanic) and Zenon had one of his best flights ever
on a new Infinity. While on tandem I guided my intermediately
students, Andrei and Peter, on a cross country flight
to the Pump station LZ. It seems like this LZ is a little
easier than the Bridal LZ – just stay away from
the hydro lines.
conditions today – while Chiu and Andrew were
carving up the ridge lift, I got Thorge ready for his
third solo flight. Great launch from Thorge, but the
odd thermal was a little too much for him so I followed
him in to the LZ. Laura, Stefan and a visiting pilot
(Peter) were looking for a ride up, so Chiu offered
his services. Conditions were still nice, but a little
more cross now. No problem for Andrew, but without a
reverse launch in her bag of tricks, Laura got pulled
up quick, and failed to counter steer in time and quickly
found her self in front of the stump – a hard
flare and she did her first top landing! Her next launch
was business as usual, so next was Thorge. Almost catabatic
now, so after a few aborts on the Tequila, I suggested
that Torge fly the Vitamin – first try and he
was airborne. Now it was my turn, I quickly caught up
to Thorge, and gave him an acro show with a nice spot
a bit tired, I needed a nice breakfast at the local
country restaurant (turning down the free BFAR food
was the right call). Alex was right on time with his
friend Vlad and his wife, and so it was back to work.
Some nice flying with Alex’s wife (a natural pilot
to my surprise), followed by a BFAR passenger that tried
to kill me (she sat down at the last six feet, but I
was just able to abort in time). Vlad, on the other
hand was the perfect passenger. Laura and Claudia managed
a couple of nice flights, while Peter and Andrew continue
to rip up the skies, this time climbing to almost 1500
meters! Patti set a new personal best flying almost
three hours and Patrick with his first 12km XC flight
to Annis Road. Thorge aced his second solo flight with
lots of cheers and support from the Deimosians and BFAR
pilots. Just when I though I was done for the day, Nichole
asked me if I could do another BFAR tandem, this time
with a very cute dancer named Tasha – it’s
a tough life sometimes!
Woodside and Bridal
brought his Dad out today, but unfortunately it was
too strong for first flights. Mike H and his wife Lewei
got to fly tandem – completing a 20 year old dream
to fly. Layne managed a tough forward launch, followed
by lots of BFAR pilots. Andrei, Peter and Andrew teamed
up and started to spec out at 1300 meters and finally
landed nicely at Harvest Dykes.
Afternoon flights were at Bridal Falls. Some felt that
flying with 20 pilots was a little too much and eventually
sank out. Some close calls from Layne and later Claudia,
and eventually with myself (when my passenger sat down
near the edge – luckily I was able to abort the
take off. Laura, Wil, Peter and Andrew showed great
style with lots of near perfect launches. Thorge was
a no show (banking issues or “something”).
though we started at 4pm there was lots of flights for
everyone: Laura, Wil, Peter, Claudia, Andrew, Patti
Andrei and Thorge. Always fun to watch a new student
(this time it was Thorge) take their first solo flight.
plan was to hike to Upper Bridal, just because, but
the conditions were so nice at lower Bridal we had to
fly. It was Thorge’s turn to fly solo today, but
he suggested some more training hill time; instead Dan
and I got to do a little XC flying (to below Cheam).
After gathering Wil and Tania, we headed up for more
flights. It took a few tries but finally Wil had a nice
inflation. Too windy now for students, so we kited for
a while. Once the wind died down it was time for Rob,
Robin, Laura and the rest to fly – still no solo
for Thorge – maybe on Friday?
Woodside and Bridal
bad day: A long day of para-waiting, no flights and
one broken window, and one missing Ipod. Some late arrivals
(Ryan and Andrei) resulted in a very late noon start
at Woodside; however it was already too strong so only
a tandem flight with new student John to the Harvest
market LZ. My other tandems were patiently waiting at
Bridal, along with Patrick and the usuals, but conditions
were missed up still. I offered some free kiting lessons
for my tandems while we started the para-waiting process.
Finally with a record high number of aborts, Glen and
I were in the air (mostly in the middle part) and in
smoothish air, followed by a nice landing. Patrick and
Ryan followed shortly afterwards, but Andrei decided
to wait and see. One last tandem (with Mike), first
try this time, and we wrapped up the day at the Wildcat.
forward and reverse launches for all Deimosians (Andrew,
Peter, Claudia, Chiu, Patrick, Zenon, Karen, Andrei,
Kris and Laura), but we still need to work on our landings.
Peter had the best landing, I thought, with his perfect
big ears elevator landing. I wrapped the day up with
a super fast take off with Peter, followed by Peter
being “baptized” into the fold (screams
were withheld). Andrew was my "movie date"
this time - we watched 2005 X-Alps on launch.
of flights today, even though it took some pilots 3.5
hours to drive out. A great tandem for Thorge’s
friend (Klee), and later Thorge, while Peter and Andrew
remained stuck in the sky. Jeremy and Laura also had
a great flights and landing. Wil had a close call when
he decided to stop running at the last meter (all caught
on film for future debates). Chiu actually decided to
land after just two hours in the air – I think
he misses his Emotion.
lesson for Thorge - some success in great conditions.
conditions - but everone had fun (Peter, Claudia, Thiorge,
Alex, Andrew, Patti, Kris...)
was my guest instructor today, coaching the students
as much as possible. I think he actually did a better
job launching the boys (and girls) than I did. Great
conditions meant early flights for the A team: Aaron,
Andrei and Andrew (Wil arrive too late and Laura needed
to practice so they both missed the first flights –
plus their name does not start with the letter A). Time
to fly Andrei’s daughter Jana, and the rest to
fly. The West wind proved difficult to judge for most
pilots, but no problem for our visiting friends for
California Gabriel and Chris. The mid day thermals were
a little too much so only a hand full of pilots flew
(Peter and Andrei). Some spooking moments for Andrei
when he spun his wing trying to exit an easy spiral
dive (turns out he shorten the brake lines way too much
– good thing that we discovered this problem while
under guidance- this explains what happen last week
with Andrei's big collapse). Finally the air smoothed
out for everyone to fly, including a last minute drop
in (Martin – Tim’s friend). A big thank
you to Aaron for the free beer and generous help throughout
conditions today! Lots of interesting flights especially
from Eleana (when she failed to check her set up). Great
progress from all the students: Wil, Tholger, Andrei,
Peter, Claudia, Andrew and Alek.
mixed conditions, but still we had quite a few flights
from Peter, Claudia, Tholger, Kris, Andrew, and Barbra.
thunderstorms near Hope were missing up our air, not
too windy but really turned up at ttimes. While Brad
and I did a few tandems, the signed off pilots flew.
At one point Andrei reported a 90% collapse (check our
forum for his summary report). Eventually the storm
dissipated and we all had very nice flights, including
Chiu, Captain Stefan, Judy, Tholger, Layne, Peter, and
Woodside and Bridal
morning came too early. Our local launch warden was
out trimming the grass but stayed clear of us (plus
I had my fearsome three inch hunting knife). Andrei
was first to arrive (as usual) followed by Trevor, and
finally Jeremy (one hour late). The plan was a couple
of flights at Woodside, picking up Laura for flights
two plus. Easy take off conditions, but bumpy air meant
another tandem flight for Jeremy and Laura, but not
before Shane gave us his low acro show (probably due
to lack of practice – a common scenario if you
have kids.) Bridal in the end was the place to be. One
more tandem for Jeremy and a few more flights for Zenon
, Andrei and Shane. Shane's effort to help drive up
the Bridal stragglers cause a big lag in the Deimos
program, but in the end, Zenon got to try a baby spiral
and Jeremy finally flew solo landing just a meter short
of the pool. Always a pleasure to be in the LZ for first
full day of flying, with Claudia (completing her first
solo flight), Laura (third solos), Chiu, Patti, Peter,
Layne, Andrei, Zenon, and finally Ken, Lindsay, and
Thoger (on Tandem). With out the huge sacrifice from
Samuel, (landing coach) , the day would have been quite
different. Many thanks to Samuel!!!
I finished the day with a big acro show and spot landing,
but the adventure was not over. With the help of my
friends Klaus and Monica, Zenon and I camped out on
launch and watched the Never Ending Thermal DVD.
the best conditions of the year – it was a good
thing ‘cause there were tonnes of students tonight:
the Solo I students Kym and Peter managed their first
flights from the top, along with Patti, Peter K, Alex,
Laura, Thoger, Peter, Claudia, Zenon and Jeremy.
1100, Burnaby Mt.
Brad (instructor) and I were going to give Chiu a dream
XC flight – but instead Chiu got to work on his
wing rescue skills. Light conditions in the Bridal LZ
meant a trip up to the new 1100 launch. First flight
(ever) went well for me, but not so good for Chiu –
he had a cravat that pulled him into the tallest tree
in the area. Brad met me at the lower Bridal launch
and we grabbed the new tree kit and extra rope from
Rob and Alan. A short talk with the local police and
SAR guys and I was allowed to do some tree climbing.
I just started working on getting the wing down and
realized the time: I was already 1.5 hours late for
my class, when I had to abandon Chiu at the top of his
150’ tree and race back to Burnaby Mt. (where
Shane was trying to figure out what to do with no gear
and eight students). In the end it worked out: newbies
Kym, Peter G, Peter K and Thoger all managed a few seconds
of air time, while Andrew, Elena, Jeremy and Wil helped
out the best they could – too bad the wind was
S to SE.
A huge day and the God’s were pleased...
With the help of the FVRD we were allowed past the
second gate to retrieve our supply of Nylex (abandoned
a few years ago on a previous Sumas work party). On
this hike the wings stayed in their bags (already
West wing on launch) so in no time we scooped up the
Nylex and headed back down the hill. Some delays on
the highway (a native protest) and quickly started
work on resurfacing the Woodside take off. With lots
of Chief’s we finally figured out how to layout
the Nylex and the site was slowly transformed. Some
of my helpers could not stand it any longer and finally
flew while most of the crew keep on digging, and spiking.
Finally it was time to fly. Patrick, Shane, Chiu,
led the way, followed by Peter and James (and myself
on tandem). Poor Andrew and Felix had to watch (too
windy). Second flights were amazing: the boys were
still in the air going on 3+ hours so time for Andrew
to fly (Felix left a little too soon). I chased Andrew
around on my Sigma4 then escorted him to the LZ. Lots
of nice landings, except Shane’s -but that’s
East wind at Exit 95 – so off to the Mission hill.
Very switchy and sometime wild conditions limited our
training flights (all except for one quick flight that
Peter sneaked in while my back was turned.) Lots of
good progress from new students Jim, James, Wil, Felix,
Andrew and Andrei. The risk of a T-Storm was getting
stronger and stronger so I pulled the plug early.
conditions at BM tonight, but eventually Wil, Laura,
Felix, Peter, Andrew, Jeremy , Chiu, Claudia and even
Elena had a flight from the top.
guess I was destine to fly solo today: Felix had his
car towed, Andrei, Elena and my tandem passenger called
in sick, even Pemberton Patti had his volume turned
down (so I could not guide him on his first XC flight);
so that left Stein and I to fly solo to Gloria and back.
Some bumpy moments but an exciting hour afternoon of
cross country flying.
day started at Woodside, with instructor Brad going
first, followed by my senior students Zenon and Layne.
A little too much for Captain UP, so that left Laura
and I to fly tandem. Up, Up and more up until we had
to do pull out the compass to steer clear of the clouds.
A nice landing at Harvest Market and we were off to
Bridal, but this time both Laura and Captain UP (Felix)
got to fly solo. A couple of long landings and some
NSP launches – (not so perfect) – but another
fun day of flying.
were once again graced by Princess Kelly and her side
kick (James), and my newest student Jim. Light winds
to start with, but by the end of the evening it was
blowing a little too strong. Just before we packed up,
I put on a little kiting show with some B-Stalls, front
tuck, asymetricals, big ears, croisant, and a spin landing.
Peter, Claudia, Elena and Jeremy all had their moments
of greatness - but overall Elena showed the most improvement.
Bridal and Woodside
low cloud base (2300’) slowed us down (just a
bit) today but did not stop us: Little Dan, Ryan, Andrei,
Peter and finally Jeremy and my self got to play with
our compasses. Peter’s flight was especially challenging
when his harness pitch adjustment was way off on just
one side and he had to fight the wing to stay on course.
Conditions for our second flights were much easier,
which allowed Andrew to take his first solo high flight,
Peter to take his second flight of the day, and Claudia
and I another tandem flight with a very long run. Andrew
apparently did not read Felix’s posting and ended
up coping his landing (minus the underwear show). Peter
and Andrew still had some flying mojo left, so we headed
to Woodside for our final flights of the day. The South
wind (I deemed) was too much for Andrew, so that left
Peter and I. I thought that a reverse launch was in
order for Peter (his first for Woodside). After a nice
cycle his Style came up quite nice, a quick turn and
Peter was off to Harvest West. I quickly hooked in and
tried a reverse. My first attempt was aborted but a
quick reset and I was able to quickly catch up to Peter
– just in time to give him a short acro show.
A fun day – many thanks to Dan and my drivers.
Blanchard and Whidbey
of adventure flying this weekend. Andrei, "Pemberton"
Patti (my newest intermediate student), Peter and Zenon
all had nice 20 minute+ flights off Blanchard, then
we raced off to Whidbey for some soaring action. All
my short cuts and fast food options were still not fast
enough – by the time we arrive the last of the
local tandem pilots, and Patrick were wrapping things
up. The local wind guru (Jim) put on a nice demo of
high wind backwards (with speedbar) flying, his close
calls were enough to convince me to leave my new G-Force
in its bag. Instead we spent a few hours kiting. Lots
of great progress from my newest students Jeremy, Elena
clouds and light showers meant time to drive home -
no flights today.
early birds (Andrei and Patrick) got the worm! The rest
of us watched the “experts” sky-out. At
Mackenzie “East is the beast”. My instructor
de jour was Art – he launched first but quickly
radioed that the air was not suitable for first flight
students; not more than 30 minutes later it was much
too strong for most pilots. My other students Toler,
Layne, Wil, Jon, Andrew, Zenon, Peter and myself could
only watch. Finally I suggested that we try some simulated
tree rescues – I think the fastest student was
Zenon! Our late pizza dinner kept us away for the start
of the first ever WCSC Pemberton meeting, but we still
managed to watch some of the Columbia slide show. Later
we join the HGer’s for some campfire songs (provided
by Jon on guitar).
Bridal Falls, Burnaby
plan was a cross country flight with Chiu (solo) and
with Lucy (tandem passenger) to Ludwing and back, however
the strong South wind had other plans – we barely
made the LZ. On our second flights (with the clouds
out of the way) we were able to quickly climb to 1000’
over launch, and probably XC to anywhere but it was
time to land and head to Burnaby Mt.
Another busy night with reasonable conditions this
time. Peter and Claudia, armed with their new gear,
were first on the scene. Barabara, Wil, Jon, Andrew,
and James (AKA Mark sometimes) started a little later
(because I was ten minutes late from my Bridal Adventures).
Great progress from all.
tough night at BM. When I arrived at 4pm it was blowing
+25kph, but by the students arrived it was more like
10kph (but from the South – East). Elena, Peter,
Claudia, Felix, Wil, Andre, Jon and Alex all managed
a bit of air time before packing it in.
Woodside and Bridal
and I (mostly Klaus) worked on the new Bridal bench
then I hooked up with my keeners/ addicts – Andrei,
Peter, Claudia and Felix for some flights off Woodside.
The weird conditions at Woodside meant a solo flight
for me while the crew drove down. Chiu and Karen reported
moderate conditions at Bridal so off to Bridal, but
not before we picked up the Bridal bench. A quick installation
and we were all fighting for a chance to try the bench
– good sign that it will be well used. Andre launch
and was climbing quickly, too quick for Felix and Peter
to fly – time for Claudia and I to get high (on
Tandem)! It took a few tries but finally the wing decided
that it was time to fly. Strong lift every where. I
crossed over to the next Valley just in time to watch
a pilot full stall and spiral into the trees. A fire
truck and two ambulances were called in (probably a
little over kill since the pilot was already hiking
out). More dark clouds were on their way – time
to land (this time Felix still had his pants on)!
Mission Hill, Bridal
East wind today, so the group minus Laura, all went
to Mission for some early morning kiting. Matt , Toller,
Felix, Peter, Claudia, Elena and Will. Lots of interesting
flights. Finally we heard from Patrick that Bridal was
turning on. A quick launch and we were off to Bridal.
We found Laura hiking down (with her daughter) but some
how had space for them in the Explorer, and dragged
her back to launch. Matt, Patrick, Andre and a few others
were quick to get high. Peter, and Felix also joined
in the Bridal party and stayed up for about an hour.
Conditions were quite light now and I really wanted
Laura to take here first solo (even with Patrick my
last minute landing instructor, completely stressed
out and a half naked German pilot roaming the LZ). She
did one practice abort to get rid of the Eby-Jebies,
then a really nice forward launch (I guess six months
of training really helped). With a huge effort Will
and I managed a quick tandem to end our day nicely.
busy night: Barbara started her solo lessons, Laura
showed the boys how it’s done, while Andrew, Peter,
Wil, Alex, Claudia, Elena, and visiting pilot Phillip
had various flights. A special thanks to Samuel for
his help with Barbara – good to see you out again
Woodside and Bridal
We woke up to a slow breakfast at the Rancher, and
later strong conditions at Woodside. Peter was treated
to a very exciting and sometimes bumpy ride to Harrison
Hot Springs (my vario recorded plus 8 m/s and –
12 m/s just flying straight no acro), while Andrei
flew to Harvest West. Back to Bridal. Strong lift
everywhere: perfect for Ryan (already near upper launch
and a few other pilots). I took a couple of drop in
tandems and later launched Peter and Felix for more
first time solo flights. Did I mention that Zenon
did his first top landing – but that’s
Many thanks to Little Dan - ATC jedi, Layne (driver)
and a few others that helped keep things moving along.
Mission Hill, Woodside
started the day at the Mission hill, with Peter, Zenon,
James, Mark, and all Elena all getting nice little flights.
Once in the Valley, conditions were quite strong. My
two Dutch friends managed a couple of nice tandems (with
the help from Kevin Ault) while the rest of the students
were patently waiting for calmer conditions. Soon the
game was back on: Layne managed a three hour flight
(his longest to date), Peter managed a couple of solo
flights and finally Andrei finished the last of his
maneuvers to graduate and complete the Deimos Novice
rating. There was a small window for Alex to take his
first solo flight, but he opted for another tandem flight.
By the time we were set up conditions had shut down.
A bite to eat then some sleep by the river.
big night at Burbaby Mt, with mediocre conditions. Toller
was first to arrive and got rewarded with lots of high
flights, but by the night the others arrive: Shane,
Little Dan, Elena, Wil, Zenon, James, Mark, Alex, Peter,
Layne, Stig and Claudia, the conditions had started
to switch to North wind. Still there was some great
conditions today at Bridal, we were able to drive almost
all the way to launch – Bridal is now open for
I launched first, this time with a new U-Turn Emotion
, followed by Little Dan and finally Chiu. Timing is
everything: Dan and I sank out to just below the cliffs,
but after about 25 minutes Dan was on his way to the
LZ while I scratched and scratched until I finally joined
Chiu above launch. Together we climbed towards upper
launch. I’m still struggling with cold hands –
time to land but not before I tested this amazing wing
to it's fullest– Chiu managed to film my acro
show this time – should be a good one!
Next some tandems with my newest students Princess Kelly
and James. I had my work cut out for me today: with
a knot in the lines on the first launch (fixed it in
the air) and an apprehensive passenger on the second
flight (with no time to abort). Great to fly Bridal
Falls – the best acro and XC site around!
busy night for the Deimos instructors: Shane arrived
just in time and surprisingly still had lots of energy
to help me teach the new students: Kelly, James and
Mark. While, the regular students Alex, Felix and Peter
were doing well in the slight South wind. It’s
nice to see Peter bond with his new gear so quickly.
The free pizza and drinks must of helped – I’ll
try to make it a tradition when ever we have such a
very last minute change of plans paid off: after a short
15 minute hike Brian, Gab (AKA birthday boy) and I were
ready to fly except the sun was still an hour away –
a good time to catch up. Once the sun arrived we were
all happily soaring above launch. With just three pilots
in the air it was surprising how much KOS was around!
Lots of acro shows then time for a birthday beer –
strong west conditions meant that we all got to kite
our wings (without a harness) - a little challenging
for our newest student, Elana, but most of the remaining
students, Andrew, Jon, Wil and Peter managed quite well.
Near the end of th evening everyone got their share
of air time.
would later confess that conditions were a little too
strong for his first high flight, but great for most
other pilots. Andrei, Layne and Patrick were doing great,
but before Mike and I could fly, a local pilot launched
and flew directly into the trees (right of take off).
It seems that I was the only person able to climb a
tree today, so we headed into the woods for some climbing
action. Less than an hour later he was on the ground.
Mike and I finally launched and quickly climbed to top
of the stack (minus one pilot Claudio). I handed the
controls to Mike but soon discovered his secret skill
of coring sink. After picking up Layne we headed up
for a second flight, but this time with Andrei’s
wife Anna. It took a couple of tries to get the launch
perfect, but it was worth it. Later Layne and I had
a quick dinner then headed back up the hill to rescue
Don’s wing . A couple of hours later and it was
down (I think with no damage).
amounts of flying, especially for Art and Patrick -
the "XC Duo". While Laura battled with the
wind, I took my new boys on a few tandems – the
best way to learn how to fly Whidbey. Andrei was more
than ready to do his first Whidbey solo flight, so with
a little push he was airborne. Wil and Mike also managed
a couple of little flights. After a quick pizza dinner,
we took a drive up to Blanchard – mainly to watch
the sunset. Another successful Whidbey trip (even without
for a few drops of rain we had a great time at the Spit
– Layne showed us that he still has the touch,
Wil and Alex also made great progress. High flights
are coming soon!
conditions today at Burnaby Mt., with many pilots especially
Art, Patrick, and Alex getting extra high. While my
“old” students (Peter, Felix and Andrew)
practiced their pre-inflations, my newest students,
Wil and Mike worked on their forward launches. Later
the wind was near perfect for many flights from the
top for all. Mike re-affirmed my theory that gliders
are attracted to wood, when he failed to run under his
wing. This is the best training hill around (when the
st, lt, ps
was like pulley teeth to get my instructors to fly this
weekend. It was only Felix that was able to convince
his friend, Craig, to drive us up Woodside today. A
slight delay while I had to drive back down to get the
tandem harnesses – but it was worth it. Strong
conditions but between lulls, we had an easy launch,
followed by Patrick. The NW wind was still a little
too cross to keep us airbourne for hours, like on Friday,
but still a fun flight landing at the Harvest Dykes.
Patrick demonstrated his new spot landing technique,
landing near the end of the Dykes, using 7/8 of the
LZ. After some food, we tried for another flight (in
no wind?), but alas only Patrick was able to fly; but
not before Felix got to try 4-5 forward launch aborts
(for on site practice).
one pilot wanted to play today, so I spent the afternoon
teaching Felix the fine art of the Deimos reverse launch.
He should be ready for a high soon.
plans for a few high flights were nearly squashed, when
my truck decided to throw in the towel. Luckily, first
and second gear still worked and I was able to drive
Dreamy conditions for all pilots, novice to advance
: Chiu and his cousin had a great flight, then I managed
a short solo flight while I waited for Peter to arrive
on take for his first tandem flight. A quick top landing,
swap wings, and I was back in the air. Initially we
sunk out, but eventually hooked into some small tight
thermals that got us up a little higher. Fun stuff.
just finished installing the new beautiful Bridal LZ
sign when we saw a pilot high at Woodside – once
on launch we had strong thermals followed by reasonable
lulls. I was elected wind dummy – My don’t-loose-an-inch
test, followed by no harness kitting showed light conditions.
I hooked in and boom – before I could turn around
I was up 50 feet! Bigears keep the collapses to a minimum
as I went up and down quickly. I tried for Harvest West
but no ground speed (hardly), so I headed to Joe’s
place. A little rough down low, but managed a nice landing.
Patrick followed my suggestion and drove down, however
Al (the hammer) launch after me and put on an acro show
(so I heard). Better to be on the ground than….
BM and Rupert
conditions today – perfect for Alex W. and me
while we waited for the other students to arrive. Tonight
only Peter and Alex B. showed up – a bit too much
for the boys but I think they learned something. We
tried to out run the snow, by going to the Rupert hill,
but no luck.
late start but we still managed lots of flights. It
was intermediate maneuvers day, time for Chiu and Patrick
to do their funky baby acro (lots of tips discovered
– please visit our private Deimos forum for details).
Jon and I went first, followed by the boys. Almost an
hour late, my next tandem group showed up Barbara and
Memmet– easy launching and landing conditions
today; but on our final third drive up, the wind had
started switching to East – time to head home
(sadly no flight for Barbara).
strong East conditions at Exit 95, but with a large
crew of more than a dozen people – we had to try...
An easy hike and we’re at launch. Some interesting
launch attempts from the first three pilots, Kevin ,
Stein-Lisa and Pierre, but eventually they all got off.
Andrei showed us how it’s done with a very slick
reverse launch in no wind. Next was Pemberton Patrick,
one “abort” and then he was going (but not
gone): 20k west wind slammed him a few times –
that’s when I call the site closed. Just then
Patrick, Shane and Dave arrived – but no flights
for them. A few pilots were over launch at both Bridal
and Woodside, so with just a few hours left of sun light
we drove over to Woodside. Stein-Lisa went first, followed
by Zenon’s, Pemberton Patrick and finally Alex
and myself. Time for one more flight. Zenon was in the
spot light and boy did he dance (with a second perfect
thirty second Deimos take off), followed by Stein-Patrick
and final myself on solo – time for an acro show!
Fun stuff, but a little too much sun!
Burnaby Mt and Rupert
Mt was the wrong call, so after an hour we (Andrew,
Felix, and Peter) all moved to my old stomping grounds
– “Rupert park”. Still a little too
much East, but a lot better than BM. Great progress
for the new boys - almost solo time!
busy night with my students: Laura, Peter, Felix, Alex,
and Jonathon, while Chiu and Shane did their part to
keep things under control.
We had great conditions until about 6pm when some light
showers arrived, but the boys did not show any sign
of slowing down, and kept on practicing. We made some
great progress but now I have a few wings to dry out.
was on deck for his first flight today when I bumped
him for the 100lbs lighter Andrew. We had a nice flight
- surprising short (15 minutes) for such a dynamic looking
sky. On return for our second flights, Patrick got off
just in time - then the rain started. We tried one last
time at Bridal LZ to do some ground school work, but
alast, the rain found us again.
conditions for our newest student Jon – Shane
would have launched him from the top, but there was
a good chance that he would have started thermalling
to 3000’ – so only low flights permitted
today. A few more hours of ground school and he will
be ready for his first high flight in the Fraser Valley
– maybe this Saturday?
A little too much East wind meant a later (casual)
start than usual. Eventually, Karin, Chiu, Patrick
and my self were ready to fly. Since Chiu was the
most senior pilot (?) he went first: the tight thermals
were a little elusive at first but after about half
an hour we’re all at 900m. The plan (for everyone)
was to cross country to Harrison and beyond, but I
felt that conditions were not quite right –
better to practice some baby acro and hang around
launch. Two hours later, I managed a sloppy top landing,
while the others warmed up at Harvest West. Bridal
was calling for me, for our second flight, but the
boys and girl were too tired. A great welcome back
flight for Karin.
dream XC day was shorten to just a pleasant sled ride
day – you would think that a 2.8 lapse rate would
The Explorer had an easy time driving up to the ¾
mark, then the snow was just too deep. A short half
hour hike and we were on launch – clear sunny
– beautiful Bridal! Patrick and I took turns shoveling
the first meter of snow aside until we had our little
runway. I was on the Obsession today so no problem launching
(first try and no belly dragging). I thought Patrick
was going to steal the day (when the West wind arrived
– 10kph in the LZ), but no, only another 15 minute
sled ride and some belly dragging. The boys at Woodside
sounded like they were have a bit of a fight with the
snow, rain, hail front that was approaching –
but a few XC flights were heard (almost to Bridal).
few seconds of flying followed by more seconds to of
how to keep my wing over my head – see the Deimos
Private Forum for the full story.
and I tried hard to find a place to fly, but just too
windy or catabatic.
a couple of short flights for me: I was playing wing
man for my newest student (Toler), but he was not able
to thermal and had to land early. Even Little Dan tried
his hand as Toler's wing man for a short while. Chiu
on the other hand stayed high all day (on his new DHV1
wing - U-Turn Emotion). Later Andrei showed up with
his Dad, so Toler was "forced" to fly a third
flight - this time he got his harness adjusted perfectly,
but conditions were too light to go high. Time to pack
for California - back March 25.
a little too much adventure for my newest student, Toler,
but he did his best to follow Little Dan and myself,
which earned his spot as pilot of the week. We had some
trouble with the forest trail (without snow shoes),
but with a little extra effort we punched our way into
launch (pass the wild cat tracks). Dan was more than
committed to his forward launch setting a new record
for long distance belly slide. I guess Toler thought
that this was the correct way to launch, and made a
special effort to out distance Dan’s slide –
sorry no video camera today! After I finished my baby
acro show, I thought that the excitement was over for
the day – not so – the ride back up to Sumas
(in Toler’s van) was even wilder! You had to be
course the conditions were great when we left for Whidbey,
with lots of flights for the early birds, but perhaps
the karma gods were not pleased with our duty free maneuver.
Toler and Zenon and I had fun kiting but no flights
great day of flying! Our newest and keenest Deimosian,
Toler, along with Stein and Lisa, spent a few hours
on “Andrei’s” hill (in Mission with
near perfect conditions) –then we headed to Woodside.
I actually felt giddy seeing the pilots above launch.
A short hike in (from the final spur) and we were ready
to fly. Stein and Lisa went first (with a slightly less
than perfect launch) followed by Chiu’s (I can
correct and save any wing) launch, and finally by Toler
(oh my god – what a jedi) launch. On this day,
if you missed the early house thermals you would eventually
be too low to climb out, however when I launched, it
was easy. Two hours later I made one weak attempt to
top land then was forced to Harvest West. Apparently
the boy’s second flights were flawless. Lots of
lively PG talk, at the Wildcat, capped the day off nicely.
conditions in White Rock, so I spend a few hours teaching
Toler the fine art of the Deimos forward launch (and
some reverse training) - high flights planned for tomorrow.
new student Toler called in today, so I asked Stein
to run the show: He took him on a couple of extended
sled rides at Woodside, and at one point, they were
a few hundred feet over launch – apparently he
forgot to bring his boots and flew in his runners –
that’s the spring fever in him I guess. Wednesday,
March 5, is looking flyable so far - who's in?
West conditions so no big flights today - although Zenon
gave it a good try. New students Craig and Toler worked
hard today, but we had the most success at Winskill
Park, but by that time Samuel, Laura and Zenon had other
East wind was no match for my newest student Craig.
Eventually Little Dan and Movie Dave showed up to steal
the show, but not before Craig managed to fly to the
bottom - another Jedi is born!
Elk reports were great when we were at Exit 95, but
by the time Little Gill, Little Dan and myself were
able to hike up, things had degraded to a small snow
storm with cloud base almost to the ground - BLAH! Ivan
radioed up that there was no sign of blue sky anywhere
- BLAH! So before we started to cool down, we quickly
packed up and hiked down. 3/4 of the way down I could
see blue sky again - that's the way it goes sometimes.
Ivan offered us all a little hiking snapps and a cold
beer which helped remove some of the blah's, and told
us more about his new top landing technique (specially
designed when their are spectators around).
North West wind today. Only Chiu managed to get airbourne
a couple of times while I worked with Laura on perfecting
her reverse launch skills. Nice to be in the sun! BTW
the "evil fence" has been removed!
We met at exit 95 today and decided to head up and
try our luck at Sumas. Mister Windtalker was reporting
gusts to 20 mph E so we were hoping for some soaring.
When we got to the second gate, it was unlocked, so
we were able to drive a bit farther than usual and
shorten our snowshoeing a little, which seemed like
a great idea at the time. Another hour or so of walking
and we are at launch, with little to no wind and the
occasional gust over the back, where had our 20 mph
gone??? ….mysterious…. We tried the higher
wind launch, but ended up back at the larger launch,
where there was more room for error. The wind was
coming up very light to zero now, and Tom launched
first after a mysterious abort. Little Dan was next
and also had a very fast snowshoe run launch. Art
launched last and got it right the first time. Save
for a little issue with a runaway seatboad (mysterious!),
everyone had nice sledders to the LZ, where we found
out our driver was stuck behind the now locked upper
gate. @#$%ing mysterious! We called 9-1-1 (always
a good choice when you don’t know who else to
call), and they send a grumpy fireman up to open the
gate. How exactly someone managed to lock the gate
and not notice the vehicle still inside is still a
mystery, but in the future, probably best to park
below the gate and save the trouble. Meanwhile, Little
Dan went on an entertaining hitchhike ride back to
retrieve Tom’s truck from exit 95 with a local
who suggested that the solution to our problem might
be to “jump it with a dirtbike”….I
don’t think he was very clear on the details
of our problem, but it sure sounded cool, and the
ride was very helpful nonetheless. We finished off
the mysterious adventure day with some mysterious-adventure-meat
burgers at Schnitzelz, and everyone headed home. Tom
always seems to somehow come through when it comes
to surprise adventure, I think it follows him around
" The wind gods
decide where we can fly, we just have to listen to them
Deimos Paragliding Inc.
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