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Tandem Flights

There's nothing sweeter than taking to the skies, and soaring with a paraglider or hang glider.  Except perhaps doing it with an experienced tandem pilot instructor that will take care of all the flying, so that you can sit back and enjoy the vistas around you, and the fantastic sensations of free flight!

Please contact one of our local schools or independant tandem pilots to arrange a flight!

What's It Like?

Both hang glider and paraglider tandem flights are available.

On a Paraglider - You, as a tandem passenger, fly in front of the pilot, in a comfortable seated position, and have a perfect, unobstructed view of everything around you.  To take off, you and the pilot run down a short, gently sloped hill to inflate the paraglider.  You're then lifted away from the ground. While in the air, you can relax, enjoy the view, and even take pictures or video. Your pilot may give you the opportunity to take the controls and do a few turns yourself. Landing is normally very smooth and gentle, requiring perhaps a few quick steps before you come to a stop.

On a Hang Glider - You and your Instructor will set up the hang glider. You will be given a quick pre-flight briefing, practice a few launch runs, and then run side by side off the mountain and into the sky. Once launched, there is nothing else you need to do! Just relax and enjoy the feeling. Your pilot will encourage you to give it a try. Look ahead and relax and you will soon be flying the hang glider all by yourself. We will not compromise on safety. Because it is safest, we will always land on wheels. You still have nothing more to do except relax in your harness while your instructor glides into the field for a smooth gentle landing.

The length of your flight is dependent on the day's weather conditions.  Hang gliders and paragliders utilize columns of rising air, called "Thermals", to ascend higher into the sky. Certain conditions generate more thermal activity, and enable longer and higher flights.  However, you can expect to have at least a 15 minute flight.  Even without thermals, a hang glider or paraglider can glide and soar for a very long time. You'll have opportunity to take some great shots if you've brought your camera.

Tandem Flight Qualifications

Almost anyone can be a tandem passenger.  The passenger must be able to run a few steps while launching and landing (in the case of a paraglider tandem flight).   Also, because of the nature of the equipment, there is a weight restriction.  Paragliders are certified based on total weight of the pilot, passenger, and the equipment itself.  Passengers must generally weigh between 38 kg (85 lbs) and 103 kg (225 lbs).  However, depending on the specific pilot and his equipment, this range may be somewhat flexible.

What To Bring

Bring sturdy footwear, and dress according to the weather.  Be prepared to possibly spend some time enjoying the outdoors as you "para-wait" for your flight.   It's not a bad idea to wear (or bring) long pants to wear for your flight, as well as a windbreaker or fleece.  Also, if you're prone to motion sickness at all, you may want to consider taking something for it prior to your flight.

Arrangements

Once you've registered and reserved your tandem flight (below), a club director will contact you to gather more information, and arrange a pilot, location, and date that works best for your tandem flight.

On the day of your flight, upon arriving at your designated flying site, you'll meet your tandem pilot, who will take care of everything for you, answering all your questions, and making sure you have an safe, awesome experiece.

Because the sport of paragliding depends entirely on the whims of mother nature, be prepared to spend some time "para-waiting", as your pilot determines the optimum time to fly in order to make your tandem flight experience the best it can be.  For pilots, this is all part of the sport, and we all enjoy the camaraderie of each other's company, both while we're in the air, and while we're itching to be in the air!

Spectators are welcome near the landing zone area, as well as at the launch site.  Follow your pilots' instructions at all times. Please note that anyone other than the tandem passenger may be required to pay a fee for a ride to the launch site (or simply drive yourself).  Of course, there are fantastic views to be had from the launch site as well, so it's well worth it.

Reserving your flight

Visit the club's Sponsors page and select a hand gliding or paragliding school or independent tandem pilot to take you up! If you contact a pilot or school directly, be prepared to pay the standard fee for a tandem flight. But trust me, it'll still be worth it!

* Finally, understand that flying is inherently dangerous, and while everyone involved does everything possible to minimize the risks involved, some risk still remains. As a tandem passenger, you will be required to sign waivers to ensure that you understand this. Click here to see a copy of the WCSC waiver.

Have fun, and we'll see you in the air!




Last updated:  21 Sep 2011