Online newsletter of the Hawaii Paragliding Association

Sunday, September 21, 2014


We are super lucky to have so many options for flying on most days. Today we had many happy pilots flying at least three sites, and we could easily have spread out to a few more! Four of us met to fly at Kaena for our second day in a row out there, this time in easy ridge lift under very high clouds, cruising all around from the point to the drop zone, until the window closed. Four flew Kahana in super east low cloud conditions, all landing at Punaluu. And at least a handful flew Makapuu in strong east low cloud conditions. If there are more details or pictures to share, post them in a comment!

Knobject Fixation

When our winds are light enough they give way to sea breezes that waft onshore from every corner of the island. Almost any site on the island can be flown in a sea breeze (and you all know by now which one absolutely cannot). But figuring out which one will work best is tricky. Sometimes you just have to go with your gut. I happen to be fixated on a particular corner of the island, so that's an easy decision for me.

Tuesday, September 16, 2014

Eye'm Back!

After a very long hiatus, by my standards anyway, I was granted medical clearance, now with two eyes. I was ready to get back in the saddle. I had to work til noon, and then a 3pm rug rat pickup was dropped my way. Well, I guess there is always tomorrow. But on the way back to the house, I looked up at the range, and it was clearing. Suddenly the truck went from 15mph to 40mph, with the horn beeping at the little school kids to get out the way. Two skipped red lights, a two wheeled turn and I was flying by the driveway kicking Kalei and Mochi to the curb.

Monday, September 15, 2014

Congratulations, Dave and Kim!

Dave and Kim have been best friends for over 25 years. They have stayed in touch for all that time, and last night they made their permanent bond at the Koolau Ballroom. There were pictures at the sign-in table: one from when they met and one from the present. But everyone commented that they look the same! They met as flight attendants many moons ago, and Kim is still with Continental/United, residing until recently in Florida, I think. Dave left the Chelan PG Nationals partway through to help her move to Hawaii. She's a keeper because she actually told him to stay and finish. But Dave left to help her anyway, so clearly she means a bunch more to him than the top finish at the Nationals for which he was destined.

Thursday, September 11, 2014

Doubting Thomas

Who would ever stick someone with the name Thomas, aka Tom? The name should be removed from the baby book of names, as it has developed several negative connotations through the centuries. I am sure anyone with this saintly name has been teased by one or more of these renditions of Tom. I know I have. Today, while passing the Chalice of Debriefing around the LZ, I was reminded of the founder of the disenfranchised name, Apostle Thomas. May this story be a heads up to all future parents: put some thought into the name please.

Wednesday, September 10, 2014

Wakeup Calls

We could all use an occasional reminder of our incredible privilege and good fortune, as we pursue our unique pastime here in this place. It's easy to take what we experience for granted, especially during periods of perfect flying weather like the one we're in now. So in the middle of yesterday's otherwise dreamy flight, Thom and I each experienced brief nightmare scenarios to wake us up and remind us how lucky we are!

Tuesday, September 09, 2014

Olomana Ping Pong

Ping pong flights are what a few of us are resorting to these days. We ping a particular starting point, say, the Makapuu lighthouse, then we'll pong as far north as we dare go, which today was Olomana. Then back to the lighthouse, then back to Olomana, and then one last pong back to the lighthouse. Yup, just like a ping pong ball. It may sound monotonous, and frankly, when doing it alone it is, but when you're gaggled with a group, it's very interesting to see the different routes each takes on that given day in varying conditions. I am not trying to justify flying laps, although it has cut down on retrieves by sending folks back to the LZ. Monday was one of those learning flights.

Thermal Heaven

When thermals die, I think they must go to Kahana. Because on some days the thermals there can just be so damn heavenly. If you can say damn heavenly. Anyway, Monday was that kind of day. Woody and I sampled angelic columns of rising air at Kahana, Kaaawa, Kualoa, and Punaluu, as Woody tagged along for his first chronic loop, in his first real cross country wing.

Good Company

Sunday’s super light easterly conditions and high cloud base only tempted a small hard core group of us to Kahana. Getting up and going somewhere from Kahana in those conditions is always a challenge, but any challenge is more fun with good company. I hiked up with Scrappy, Duck, Gaza and Hendrick, with high hopes of heading east. Far east.

Sunday, September 07, 2014

Come, Mister Tala Man

Come Mister Tala Man, tally up some points, night time come and we gotta go land! Sorry, the song got stuck in my head yesterday after watching Ike in his new Tala racing up and down the Koolaus. What a day of fun, and it lasted into the night. Gosh, we monkeys do have a blast. Makapu'u was definitely the right call for our Saturday flying, even though cloud base was a little lower than we like, well at least most of us. Read on for a quick recap of the flying and excitement from yesterday's gaggles.