Tuesday, April 14, 2015

Dream Weekend

For three straight days, the forecasters stubbornly repeated a dire prediction for breezy conditions and showers. And for three straight days, we were delighted to prove them wrong. Over a dozen pilots flocked to Kahana each day for a variety of surprisingly good thermal and cross country missions, ranging from Laie to Waikane, and topping out at four grand. We ignored the forecast and just enjoyed the heck out of this surprise streak of perfect cross country weather! Or perhaps it was all just a dream, as Thom suggested. But my phone is jammed with over a thousand pictures from those three days, so I’m pretty sure it really happened! Here’s hoping for more dreamy weekends like that!

Wednesday, April 08, 2015

Changing of the Guard

The flying community has lost one of our longest serving members. Kui Michelmore passed on April 7, 2015. For 16 years Kui served as the Top Dog of the Hawaii Paragliding Association. Kui was the beloved soul mate of Pete Michelmore, whose accomplishments in our world were enhanced by his four legged partner. She passed where she started, at David Michelmore's house, in the presence of David, Pete's brother, and Shirley Michelmore, Pete's mother.

Tuesday, April 07, 2015


The forecast made it look like we'd have a brisk day on our hands, but it turned out to be just about right, with plenty of room for thermaling and cross country flights in all directions from Kahana. We got close to four grand and logged eighteen miles over stunning scenery under the highest cloud base we've seen in many weeks.

Diabolical Dewpoint

Almost twenty pilots at Kahana on Easter Eve, and almost ten airborne at once: it was an impromptu fly-in! We even managed some cross country flying to Punaluu and back, and to Swanzys, despite the same infernally low cloudbase that has been soaking us for weeks. What is behind this cloudbase curse, this humidity hex, this diabolical dewpoint? Global warming? El Nino? Hot air at the LZ? Well let’s cool it and get that cloudbase back up to normal!

Monday, March 30, 2015

Cloud Crossings

What a crazy weekend of low clouds and variable airflow at Kahana. Lots of pilots flew both days despite the strange conditions, and a few of us even managed to fly cross country despite cloud bases as low as we've ever seen them. Apparently some kind of surface trough had snuck in behind the forecast for sunny trades. But nevertheless we managed a tentative bay crossing on Saturday and a full fledged trip to Kualoa on Sunday, connecting the misty ridge lines by surfing below, around and above the clouds. Great to fly with visitors Chris and Lindsay, Miami Eddie, Maui JJ, and AK Jason who is back with us for a few days.

Saturday, March 28, 2015

Sunbeam Session

As many of us all around the island can attest, there's nothing like living right next to your favorite flying site. The forecast called for very strong wind, but the sensor was strangely mellow, and a quick drive out to check conditions confirmed that the forecast was, ahem, overblown. And while the tenuous thread of rural island roadway that connects everyone else to this place was temporarily tied off, three lucky pilots savored a gorgeous afternoon session along the foothills of the Koolaus that lasted until the last sunbeams streamed over the mountains. Kudos to Allegra for the genius plan to drive the long way around the island to get here! And thanks to Duck for the timely retrieve!

Thursday, March 26, 2015

6th Annual Bob Johnson Memorial Fly-in Festival

Please join us for the sixth annual Bob Johnson Birthday Party and Flying Festival, at Kahana Bay, from May 1 to May 3. We will be camping and flying and celebrating all weekend long. Everyone is welcome: family, friends, visiting pilots. More details coming soon.

Wednesday, March 25, 2015

Dude! Welcome to Chuns!

Six happy pilots scored unusually mellow conditions yesterday on the North Shore, soaring and thermaling multiple laps between Kahuku and Waimea, with two of us ending our flights by blazing into the sunset towards Haleiwa to see how far we could go. The wind was lighter than our typical post-frontal flow. In fact I'm not really sure what kind of flow it was: it was more intense than a sea breeze, but just barely. Whatever it was, I'll take more days like that!

Tuesday, March 24, 2015

Back Door to Kahana

Sometimes a visitor flies one of our sites and shows us what can be done. They may not know that flying over Boogaland, in the lee, dodging clouds isn't a good idea. But this time, serendipity inserted itself, took one pilot that should have known better, put him in a place were he wouldn't normally be, and offered up a new line.

Wednesday, March 11, 2015


I don’t often go all the way; many times I just go halfway. I've taken some heat for that, but halfway isn’t always bad. As some wise persons have noted, courage stands halfway between cowardice and rashness. Today I thoroughly explored both ends of that spectrum, but eventually I was elated to make it to the halfway point with my little half sack of courage.