Thursday, December 24, 2009

Malama Nanakuli

In the few hours before the TFR went into effect, a few pilots - Fireman Dave, Frank, Doug & Matty (Tandem in my old P-44), Jorge, and I - got a chance to do some thermal flying out at Nanakuli.

We all hiked up to the high launch, led by Fireman who launched shortly before I got up there. As I sat there catching my breath and taking in the awesome view, I was reminded what a special place this is. In that moment, I decided my mission during this flight was to try and get a few pictures of the Nanakuli Valley. I hope that the few shots I got convey the truly spectacular nature and mana (power) that this place holds.

Frank followed Dave, pulling off his first launch up at high. Jorge helped Doug and Matty off and offered to help me too, but I opted to try it on my own and let him go off. I got off last, with only a little cut on my finger, on my third try. Soon enough we were all up over Haleakala and finding some nice thermals to turn in, and enjoying the scenery.

I'd like to thank the people of this beautiful valley for allowing us to fly in their back yard. While I may never meet many of them personally, they have all been so gracious to allow me the privilege of soaring over their neighborhood . The rest of the pictures are on Flickr here.

Mele Kalikimaka!

6 comments:

Anonymous said...

That was some great thermal flying - big fat thermals with just enough edges to keep your attention. 3 grand would've been easy to attain as I got 2.7k but I kept hitting my head on cloud base. Doug was comfortable in the white room and his old playground. What a reward for such a hike - high launch was the right call Dave - easy up. My family went to MPU, out of habit, and was surprised, as were the pilots, that I wasn't there. I gave them the Tiger excuse - I'm flying (playing) another site (course). That was bad. Frank

JeffMc said...

Great write-up and nice pics, Jim! Way to close out the year guys!

-Jeff

David said...

Refreshing perspective Jim, good take.

It was good that it wasn't an epic flying day, it would have been hard to call it quits before the Pres's plane flew by.

MauiDoug said...

Great pics and story Jim! Thanks again Jim for your very thorough site intro of Nanakuli last week. Your guidance helped put me to ease on my first NAN mid launch. What a great flying site! Much Aloha, MDoug

Mad Dog said...

Alright Jim! Perfect pics from cloud base, your right it's a beautiful Valley. Hope you were getting some time in on that new toy of yours, it looks keen in the air...

Anonymous said...

Great write Jim, I ended up at MPU for some easy soaring. Visitors Jason & Jule got a flight in and we all landed just before 2 pm.

We need to get this Nanakuli presentation done and these shots will be great to include along with your story of thanks, 99% of the people there have been really great to meet. I can't wait to fly there again. It is a beautiful valley. Sidehill