a visual journey
Follow along with us as adventurers take to the skies for the first time on a tandem, learn valuable paragliding skills or even catch a glimpse of pilots just goofing around!
Jason hadn't flown in a couple of years and asked if I'd re-initiate him into the air with a tandem. Of course! Some thermals were blowing through as we set up so I made sure to remind him to keep on his feet while launching, and as you can see from the picture he stayed strong and we flew smoothly into the sky. A few bumpy thermals in the air took us high enough to fly over to Harvest Market for the bird's-eye farmer's field tour…thanks Mark for offering to drive.
The flying season isn't over yet! Lots of sunshine out here in the Fraser Valley, and September's forecast looks amazing. Come out for a tandem flight or just watch the rest of us run off the mountain and snap a few pictures while enjoying the view from our launch site. Make a day of it with some friends or family - Harrison Hot Springs is only a 10 minute drive from where we fly, not to mention visiting the waterfalls and emerald green forest at Bridal Falls, exploring Othello tunnels near Hope, and finding your way through the Corn Mazes popping up all over the Fraser Valley.
Don't waste these sunny days! There's plenty of time to clean the house when it's raining in November...
Dave, a pilot from the UK, emailed me to do some site guiding while he was in town for a business trip. Even with the forecast winds blowing over the back, we still drove up "just in case". Martin managed a running reverse launch in the light winds, then used way more patience than I think I'll ever possess to (eventually) squeak out over 2 hours, spending the whole time only a few hundred meters over the ground! Dave and Mark ended up doing forward launches as the wind was almost non-existent at launch by now, and I caught Mark's fabulous take-off on my iPhone:
Andrei sent out a message to fly Vedder yesterday afternoon, and by the time we all got to the landing zone there was a group of 8 excited to go up. It was a brand new site for most of us, although Martin had flown there years ago when he still flew hang gliders. The launch is flat with a steep cliff at the edge (pilots below are standing right at the take off spot) so a strong running reverse or forward launch is needed at the back of the flat area then a "leap of faith" off the edge! Everyone flew and enjoyed the change of scene from the usual sites.
We don't "jump" off the mountain - we run until the wing picks us up. I often tell my passengers that we are like Wile E Coyote from the old Road Runner cartoons, where he runs off the cliff and keeps running in mid-air until he realizes he has no ground under his feet. Instead of pulling out a miniature umbrella like in the cartoon, our wing has already started supporting us. Chantal did a wicked job of running as you can se in this photo. You can see her feet still underneath our harnesses as we take to the air. Moments later she was sitting comfortably in front of me as we soared over the tree tops.
It's been a great summer for flying! Playing catch-up and posting pictures and videos from fun afternoons. Here's Klaus launching at Bridal Falls
Another shot from Saturday at Bridal Falls, this time George just seconds after launching his Skywalk Tequila 4.
Another competition…this time it was a few pilots wondering who'd make the photo log page from Saturday! With all the great photos the winner just had to be the one who was the most charming ;)
Tyler showing great launch form as he loads his wing and charges off into the sky!
A throwback Thursday video from 2006 (?) at Black Mountain, just across the Sumas border crossing on the way to Mt Baker in Washington State. The Can-Ams used to be a friendly competition between the Canadian & American pilots (BC vs WA) and would be hosted at Bridal Falls one year & Black Mt the next. The "competition" has changed throughout the years, and has been held in the US each year due in part to the big campground in the landing zone.
Information on this year's event is posted here on the WCSC forum if you want to check it out for yourself this summer!