Tuesday, August 30, 2016

Alps Paragliding 2016

Here are my (Rick's) flights for this time around. I was hoping to do some big XC in the 200-300km range, but alternately stable and unstable weather conditions seemed to conspire against me. Still, looking at this map, not a bad effort! I was able to fly for all 13 days of the holiday, with a decent XC distance on most days. Here is the day-by-day summary:

Date Location XC Distance Comment Aug 8 Allevard to Grenoble 37km we arrived in Paris on 6am that same day!
Aug 9 Mt. S. Giorgio, Italy 15km unstable, front passing thru; climbed Via Ferrata
Aug 10 Mt. S. Giorgio to Masseranga 112km nice flight along foothills of Alps
Aug 11 Laveno 79km triangle could not quite close it due to valley wind
Aug 12 Laveno to Varzo 69km very stable, tried to cross to Switzerland
Aug 13 Fiesch, Switzerland 116km flew over Weisshorn glacier!
Aug 14 Fiesch 169km triangle could not extend to south due to showers
Aug 15 Fiesch to Martigny 121km aimed for Chamonix but shut down by valley winds
Aug 16 Aravis to Montendry 52km aiming further south but too stable
Aug 16 Montendry to Albertville 52km returned north
Aug 17 Sallaz to Arclusaz 59km unstable, landed due to thunderstorm
Aug 17 Annecy 14km bought new harness, then evening flight
Aug 18 Les Richards to Mt. Orel 45km unstable, top-landed to wait out rain
Aug 18 Mt. Orel to Ceillac 39km unstable, dodging dark clouds
Aug 19 Briancon-Prorel 10km too much wind, aborted triangle
Aug 19 Ceillac 60km three laps of 20km
Aug 20 Baulme-la-Roche, Burgundy 3km evening ridge soaring, left Paris next morning

TOTAL 1052km

The Isere Valley on the first day. I was mostly only 100-200m above valley bottom for most of the flight! Via Ferrata in Italy. After a short flight in the morning, unfavorable weather made this a better way to spend the rest of the day. A scenic view of the Susa valley from the via ferrata route. Crossing the Aosta Valley on the Italian foothills route. Landing at the small village of Masseranga, after a 112km XC flight. Flying over the Lombardy Lakes: Lago Maggiore and the town of Intra. Waiting for thermals at the Fiesch TO, Switzerland. Grimsel Pass, a famous turnpoint on the Fiesch super-skyway. Flying for distance between the Rhone Valley and the Bernese Oberland, altitude nearly 4000m. Flying the Bernese Oberland, with its highest peak Finsteraarhorn (4274m). On the other side of the valley, the main Alpine Ridge, with Monte Rosa (4634m), the second highest mountain in the Alps. Flying near the Weisshorn (4506m). Hanging glacier on Grand Pic de la Lauziere (2829m), Savoie, France. Friendly, civilized, and scenic Annecy. Ceillac, a unique paragliding location in the rocky southern Alps near the Italian border. The Queyras Mountains around Ceillac. Final evening in Europe, ridge soaring until sunset at Baulme-la-Roche in Burgundy.


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