Sunday, July 24, 2016

21 Gun Salute

I finally had the chance to get into some of this beautiful Macedonian air yesterday.  Tullio was kind enough to bring me a Falcon from Italy so I had something to fly if I found some spare time.  Elia, one of the Italian team helpers also wanted to fly, so we set a task to go together from launch to the goal field. 

I set up before the briefing with plans to launch after the last competitor.  While I was suiting up, Goran prepared the entire crew for a salute when I took off.  I looked up to see them all lined up at attention.  Although I was a bit embarrassed, as I got airborne it made me feel very honored and it set the tone for my entire flying day.  

I suppose I got the best conditions ever, because the air was soft and I never found a single sharp edge on anything.  I'm sure it helps to be flying a Falcon.  What is also so incredibly nice is that this is basically flatland flying (my favorite), but footlaunching, so no aerotowing (my least favorite). Perfect combination of the kind of flying I love.  I see why it has become something of a Mecca for paragliding.  

It was a beautiful flight and my personal best Falcon cross country (ok, it was my only single surface cross country flight ever!).  Going xc into a quartering headwind is not an easy task.  The 15km goal was hard earned, but thanks to several storks and even a lone swallow, I made it in, ahead of a few topless even ;-).  What a great flight!

(Thanks to my favorite HG photographer Flavio, and Oyvind for the pictures!)


Jonny Thompson said...

You make hearts soar. so making a Falcon soar
. . . not that impressive !

Anonymous said...

You are incredible! Worthy of a salute and raising a glass! Cheers to my friend! 1 week countdown!

Anonymous said...

totally agree with the above two posts, cheers Hun you're a delightful Thermal no wonder hearts and gliders soar!!!