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Powered Paragliding, Paramotoring, PPG - news  

Oct 7/09      September PPG course with Steve - Tuesday Sep 29/09 - video.

   

Oct 6/09      Out of office.

I am taking Thanksgiving weekend off - I will be out of office from Sat afternoon till Monday night.

Sep 30/09      September PPG course with Steve.

The forecast for the week of September was so bad that I ended up calling both students registered for the course trying to stop them from coming down. I have been able to get hold of one of them and we decided to post pone till weather improves. The other, Steve who is commercial pilot, was coming day later on Sunday to start. It turned out to be half decent day which no one expected and by 5 pm Steve was ready for his first solo. In no time Steve was cruising around enjoying somewhat smooth air. After landing Steve said that he had not had so much fun flying in about 20 years. Yes, I expect that it would be much different, no buttons to push, no gauges to watch just simple pleasure of flight. Steve took a short break and after while took off again. At that point sun came out and after 20 min or so Steve was reporting fair amount of turbulence near the ground. I have noticed that too so I asked him to land. After Steve landed I went up and did find air to be quite nasty and getting worse by minute. We decided to pack up and continue later on this week as forecast is bad for Monday and Tuesday.

     

Sep 29/09      Ground handling with Lawrence - Sep 24 and 25.

On Thursday and Friday last week I had two 2 hour sessions with Lawrence. Thursday, great smooth wind that allowed Lawrence to greatly improve his ground handling skills. The air on Friday was quite challenging. With wind turning to east in anticipation of bad weather it took a lot of skills to keep the glider floating over head.

Andre,

Thanks to you, the lessons on Thursday and Friday were most productive and encouraging.  I am looking forward to the next lessons and the thrill of learning yet another skill on the path of flying PPG. Weather permitting; I will be in the area as often as possible to work on my Dad's house before winter sets in.  The Thanksgiving long weekend would be just the time slot I am looking for. I will keep an eye on the weather and give you a call.

By the way, my upper arms are all bruised from the straps.  One person asked whether I was the victim of spousal abuse.

Thanks again for your guidance 

Lawrence

Sep 22/09      US Air Force uses this for fighter pilots - try it. 

The object of the game is to move the red block around without getting hit by the blue blocks or touching the black walls. If you can go longer than 18 seconds you are phenomenal. It's been said that the US Air Force uses this for fighter pilots. They are expected to last at least 2 minutes.

Give it a try but be careful...it is addictive!! Air Force Test

Sep 20/09      Training with Ralph - Video.

 

Sep 16/09      Training with Ralph.

After buying a paraglider Ralph spent several weeks practicing on his own perfecting his kiting skills. Last night we got together for more flying and after short ground handling session Ralph successfully took off for the third time. Since flying conditions were amazing he decided to put in long flight. Meanwhile Mark showed up to enjoy time in the air so I gave him video camera and asked him to take some footage of Ralph in the air. After 1 hour in the air things started to cool down and Ralph decided to land to grab his sweater. We took a short break and in no time Ralph was in the air again, This time he flew about 30 min. Sun came down and it was time for cold brewski and do some extreme mosquito fending. Great successful evening, Good work Ralph. Once I have some time I will edit the video. Meanwhile check out the Ralph's Cap'n video. http://www.niagarafallsreview.ca/ArticleDisplay.aspx?e=1713455

Sep 16/09      Jason adds 7 more flights to his log book - Sep 12/09.

 

Sep 15/09      Valentyn adds 4 more flights to his log book.

 

Sep 15/09   No news?

I have been busy building shop/garage at the back of my house and did not have time to post on web

Sep 1/09      Alan's training - day 2 - Video

 

Aug 27/09      Alan's training - day 2 - Sunday.

The forecast was somewhat sketchy. Calling for rain showers in vicinity. I left St. Catharines where the weather was nice but by the time I got to our training field I was driving through heavy rain. Shoot. Allan was already at the field so we decided to grab coffee at Europlates and give it some time. I did not think there would be any way we could fly but did not want to just turn around and go home. Also Valentyn from Toronto was coming so I wanted to wait for him. He came to see us at the restaurant and we stayed and chatted. In one our or so sun was out and we were ready to fly. With no problems both Valentyn and Allan started to take of and land with Allen managing 5 flights and Valentyn 4 flights in relatively small window of opportunity. After we packed up we went for beer to celebrate our good luck as no one of expected to fly at all. Mmmm the chicken wings were good and beer was nice and cold.

Aug 26/09      Alan's training.

We started with ground school on Sat morning as usual. With only 1 person in class all was done by 12:30. Quick lunch at Tim Horton's then off to the field. When we got there it started to pour rain. Bummer. We hid in car and watched Risk and Reward video. By the time we were done the clouds parted and grass was partially dry. There was nice breeze so we have decided to start with basics of ground handling. In 2 hours or so Alan had the forward down. We practiced powered runs and then inflations with paramotor on his back. All was going well so we decided to try first solo. All went well and Alan was circling the field. It was getting dark also we did not have much fuel in the machine so after about 15 min Alan landed we packed up and went for beer.

Aug 23/09      Update from Mike D..

Hi Andre,

I hope you had a good time away. Aside from a week of camping, I have been flying quite regularly. Iíve logged about 45 flights and many hours. I just wrote (and passed) my pilot permit exam and would like to thank you again for your superb guidance and teaching. I have been choosing very calm days for flying and enjoying many cross country trips near my home. With little or no winds I have been getting a lot of practice with forward inflations. The no wind landings have been a bit challenging and are getting better each time. I still hear your voice giving me the few and critical instructions as I take-off and land and I still do not know everything (far from it).

I had a XC a few weeks ago that was amazing. The conditions were absolutely perfect including the temperature at altitude. You know how you have those warm summer nights were you get driving along and you just donít feel like stopping so you keep on driving. Well this XC was like that. I got up and just kept on flying. After heading over my house I made my way to Mount Nemo and on. I was up for an hour and a half and only landed because my arms were getting a bit tired. At one point a small plane with an open cock-pit (probably classified as an ultra-light) flew over head. The fellow waved and went on his way. Iíve flown past hot air balloons and watched parachute jumpers jump from a plane. Iíve passed over many deer and waved at kids playing in their yard.

The other day I was watching TV and said to my wife; I feel like flying. I keep my gear ready to go and ten minutes later I was at the field. Ten minutes after that I had warmed up the engine and laid out the glider. Twenty-five minutes after leaving my house I was in the air. After a nice little flight I landed and packed up. Twenty minutes after landing I was back at home. It doesnít get any better than that.

I am looking forward to having you and Mark come up my way. Attached are a few pictures. It was a hazy sunset and they arenít the best shots. One is above the field I fly looking east toward Mount Nemo (on the right) and Rattlesnake Point (on the left). As you can see; it is not far to travel to these areas. Another picture is of the field I fly out of with a few planes parked to the side. Unlike Sodom Road; the east winds I have flown in are really good air. I also took your advice and added a slope to my trailer. However; instead of cutting off the corner I added a section. I opened the area inside and it gave me more storage space. Converting this old utility trailer and adding the wood only cost a couple of hundred dollars and works great.

Finally; I camped near Gettysburg, Pennsylvania. Every where I go I see great places to fly. Down the road from the campground was a private air strip. I didnít take my gear but have it in mind to plan a trip next year. Flying over this historic Civil War battlefield would be awesome.

Take care and I hope we can hook up soon, Mike

July 31/09      Out of office.

I will  be traveling outside of Canada from Aug 2 to Aug 20. I will have limited access to Internet. In emergency email me at zemanandre@yahoo.com but I may not be able to get back to you immediately. Sorry for the inconvenience.

July 31/09      Valentyn manages 9 flights in 2 hrs.

After almost 3 weeks of bad weather we finally had a nice day.

July 16/09      Much needed flight - write up by Mark.

Andre and I agreed to meet up at his house at 6:30pm to go for an evening XC flight. We headed out to Staff Field. The evening looked good, with a gentle breeze blowing slightly across the airstrip. We got the machines fuelled up and ready to go. Chris Miller, who had said he wouldnít be joining us managed to arrive at the field before we had taken off and soon Mr. Staff (the generous owner of the airstrip) showed up to watch us launch. I was flying a small wing with a 125 Miniplane. With the wind so light and slightly cross, I had to run ridiculously fast before getting airborne. I almost ran half the entire runway before I decided to just yank on both brakes. It sort of worked and I was flying. Chris was in the air shortly afterwards, but he had managed to get a cravat during take off and almost decided to land again. Luckily he managed to knock it out by wrestling with some lines. We were soon on our epic evening flight. Three friends, great evening skies and full tanks of gas, what could be better than this?  

My wing and motor combination was flying really fast, but with a minimal climb rate since I was slightly heavy on the wing. It meant that I had the advantage of being able to fly ahead of Chris and Andre and circle around while I waited for them to catch up. Usually I am the straggler, so this was a nice change. 

We head out east along the escarpment over a local golf course past Short Hills and towards Brock University. We then headed over to the CanView drive in cinema, but stopped along the way to drop down low over some farmland. We spotted a location where we had flown low between trees in the past and attempted to drop down really low. With the wind direction and strength, however, we found that it was quite bumpy behind the trees so we gained altitude and started heading over towards the drive in. Before we got there Andre happened to spot a kidís helium balloon just limply floating in the air. This is only the second time that I have seen a helium balloon while flying. It was surreal last time and this time there were three of us trying to catch it in our lines. Andre managed it, then Chris caught it. At one point Andre buzzed in over the radio, ĎHey fellas, letís not crash into each other over a damn helium balloon!Ē We were getting pretty close to each other. We let the balloon float on and headed over to have a look at the drive-in cinema. Cars were arriving early even though it was still light and only Thursday. We buzzed around and waved to the cinema-goers then headed back to the field, where Mr Staff and kindly driven his truck equipped with a flashing light onto the airstrip to help us locate it in the evening light.  

Packed up and ready to go, we headed off to the pub for a few beverages.  

Life is good!
--
Mark Andrews

MarksParaglidingPages.com

July 15/09      Can you get back to me with your contact info?

I have lost my phone while back, now I have new one (same number) but was not able to transfer all contacts. Email or better yet text me with your cell number.

July 12/09      Dudes, do not call me when forecast is bad.

It is simple go here: http://www.usairnet.com/cgi-bin/launch/code.cgi?Submit=Go&sta=KIAG&state=NY and book mark this. If you see wind forecasted that is more then 14 MPH at 8 pm there will be no training that evening. Check before you text or call me. Note that I prefer text over calls.

July 12/09      Andre flies low.

July 11/09      I got new cell phone.

Back in business. Number is the same.

July 10/09      Mark's no wind reverse inflation.

Mark begged me not to put it on the website but I could not resist...

July 9/09      I lost my cell phone.

I will not be getting any text messages or calls till I sort it out.

July 9/09      ULTRA exam books.

If there is anyone who is done with the ULTRA exam books, I would be interested to buy them back for $ 30. Please let me know over email.

July 8/09      Training with Valentyn - July 5.

It has been several weeks since Valentyn flew for the first time. We have got together on Sunday to practice some reverse handling and do more flying. Like any other student Valentyn started to make the very same mistakes such as pivoting and facing glider regardless of wind direction, the occasional wrong brake input and so on. The wind actually increased through the training session so we ended up using small training glider designed for ground handling in high winds. After couple hours of hard work we were ready for break. Mark showed up so I asked him to check the air for us. I got positive confirmation that the air is smooth, meanwhile Valentyn was ready to attempt second flight. We have got ready and tried, and tried and tried. After about 20 attempts, Valentyn was tired and needed a break, I jumped in for some low flying fun. Once I landed, Valentyn was ready again. First inflation was perfect, I gave OK to fly and Valentyn took off. Shortly after wind has dropped  to zero so I told Valentyn to stay up there as another take off in no wind conditions would be very difficult. So he stayed up the for over 1 hour. Mark flew bit more and managed to do several no wind take offs using reverse inflation. One of them quite funny. Mark begged me not to put it on web but I do not think I can resist. You have something to look forward to...

Anyway, congrats Valentyn on flight number two.

July 4/09      Course dates for fall set.

Sep 26, 2009
Either Sat and Sunday or Sat to Thursday night if you can take the time off 
Full course + demo  on Sep 27 - 4 pm

Oct 24, 2009
Either Sat and Sunday or Sat to Thursday night if you can take the time off 
Full course + demo on Oct 25 - 4 pm

http://www.poweredparaglidingontario.ca/news/availability.htm

July 2/09      Nothing is locked till I have safety deposit.

Please note that you are NOT locked in for any courses, private or semiprivate or part of this schedule, until I receive safety deposit $ 500.

July 2/09      I am not available for training July 6.

June 27/09      PPG course June 20 - Day 4  - flying on Tuesday afternoon - June 23.

Ralph and Ted, a 78 years old trike pilot, came to the field at 5:00 pm. Conditions were good for reverse handling so Ralph learned the basics of that. After while winds calmed down so we went to flying. Ralph was first. We tried several take off attempts but it seemed like Ralph lost his magic touch. He was not lifting A's properly and not giving the glider appropriate brake tension. We decided to take a break. Ted was ready to go. This time we planned to use tandem paraglider as bigger gliders are more forgiving and are less twitchy on take off roll and also give Ted better climb. I after bunch and bunch of tries Ted finally managed good inflation and took off with 1/2 tank of gas. I went back to Ralph and we have tried again. On one inflation glider came up well, I gave Ralph the go ahead, he increased power but did not give glider any brake tension. On his take off run, glider started to oscillate and Ralph stumbled and fell in similar fashion like the day before. This time he was not so lucky the prop touched the ground and got seriously chipped and scuffed. Bummer. Ralph took break, meanwhile Ted was ready to land. After an easy landing I noticed that he has used up quite a lot of fuel so I adjusted Ted's motor as it was running bit too rich and he refuelled. I suggested to fill tank all the way up as on trike, one does not feel the weight so why not. Ralph started to ground handle although there was not wind at all and it was becoming more and more difficult to inflate the glider. Ted was ready for flight two so we got to work. Again we tried and tried and tried with no success. Ted was usually slow on brakes or did not give the aircraft enough power. I must admit, at one point, I was ready to quit but I really wanted Ted to have another this time long flight. Finally we had a good one and Ted was in the air again. This time in perfect smooth air, with well running engine, looking at the sunset....  Read below what Ted thought about the second flight.

I again forgot to bring the camera and video camera. Sorry. No pics or video.

Hi Andre, 

I can't get the smile off my face! That sunset flight on Tuesday was total euphoria ... a religious experience!! Looking at that spectacular scene from a thousand feet while flying the trike in cool smooth air was incredibly inspiring! My beautiful wife, Sheila, who died last June, was born in the very area I was above. That made it a particularly moving time for me (which I couldn't tell you about at the time).

Thanks to your superb skill as an instructor, plus your 'hanging in' with the ultimate slow learner, I experienced one of the highest moments of my life. 

When I was told (in 2007) that I had terminal cancer and probably three months to live I started working on my "Bucket List". My number one priority was to fly before I die. Number two: to inspire others to take up PPG aviation (which has happened and is continuing to). Number three: to give the Oncologists something to celebrate (i.e. we cured this guy!). As a 78 yr old retired clergyman I have a whole new take on life. I feel like I'm in my twenties again ... all thanks to you Andre!  

Shalom!   Ted

June 25/09      PPG course June 20 - Day 3  - flying on Monday afternoon - June 22.

Todd and Ted (a trike pilot) came to the field around 4:30 pm. It was still bit gusty so we have replaced the risers on Todd's glider for the new style with release trims. After short ground handling session it was clear that this made a huge difference and Todd's glider was no longer falling back but locking in properly. We had to adjust Todd's technique as he was used to not applying any brake but he picked it up very quickly. After 45 min or so winds were down and smooth so we went to flying. Todd flew twice and Ted also flew twice. Not bad for someone who is 78 yrs old...

I forgot to bring the camera and video camera. Sorry. No pics or video.

____________________________________________________________________________

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