14 September 2012

Epic Summer in The Alps

Well, what a summer! After what has been a frustrating UK season for many (myself included), it was great to finally have such fantastic summer flying. It really started with my Pilot Development Week in the Annecy region in July (see my earlier blog post) and then continued throughout August.
Over the top the the Avaris, looking SE to Mt Blanc
It is difficult to pick out the highlights, but flying along the Chaine Des Avaris and also my flight to the Mont Blanc Massiff are probably my two favourites.
Flying to Mt Blanc is one the flights that most Alpine pilots covert and with good reason. Before this summer, only on three days ever had pilots landed on top, but on 19th August an incredible 50-60 pilots achieved their dream. See XC Mag's website to read more.

Knowledge of the Alps is key and it was very interesting how conditions varied over quite short distances. Pilots less than 40km away struggled in stable conditions.
Mont Blanc ahead.
I have been flying in and studying the Alps for 20 years and there is always more to learn.

On 20th August it was my turn to try and the day after, with conditions still good, my wife Ruth was also able to make an attempt. Read our account here.

One of my ambitions is to feel as at home flying in the big mountains as I do when flying over the rolling green hills of the UK. At the same time I don't want to lose that feeling of utter awe. I have to say that I am loving the new experiences being thrown up all the time by this wonderful sport.
Clouds over Mt Blanc, I am glad I left when I did!
In a few days I will be heading off to St Hillaire for the Coupe Icare: the world biggest free flying festival. In 22 years of flying, I have never been, so I can not wait.
Read more about the Coupe Icare here.

T|he weather has a distinct Autumn feel now, but I am sure there are plenty of good days to come before the season truly ends. In the UK I have known decent XC flying to continue right through September and October. Bring it on!

1 comment:

  1. What a nice view to paraglide. I would like to paraglide there next summer. But for now i enjoy paragliding in luzern.