Wednesday, April 14, 2010

The spell was cast and I was charmed...

Part One - Oahu
Still reliving the experiences of the last three weeks. The trip to Hawaii was incredible, exciting, inspiring and the most fun I’ve had in a long time. Flying in to Oahu, my first local contact was Reaper. If I needed any additional encouragement, Pete’s stories of flying in the Islands definitely fueled the fire. As the winds were nuking at the time, I set to exploring the North Shore and various beaches in between.

Two days later the weather looked promising and Thom and I made our way for Kahana. After checking out the LZ we set off up the hill. Alex was soon on our trail and the three of us made our way up to launch. After some more tips and insights to the place, they ensured I was safely in the air. Thanks guys, you two make fabulous site guides. Nothing could have prepared me for the beauty of the place. As my wing took me to the skies, and the horizons expanded I could hardly contain my joy to be flying in such a mesmerizing place.

As time slipped by, more wings started to fill the sky – what a beautiful sight. Sometime later, after floating on lofty air over the bay, we landed. I would soon find out that the grin that possessed me would now be my constant companion for the remainder of the trip.

I didn’t think the day could get any better when Joey and Duck showed up and wanted to know if were heading up for another flight. What else could we say – of course we’d go. Another flight, and even more amazement. The place was magical, the spell was cast and I was charmed. Even more wings were now playing in the breeze - Pete, Bon Bon, Duck, Alex, Joey, Thom, Bill, Doug, Jeff, Matt and others.

Day two started a bit questionable with the winds. As it progressed though it only got better. For the second flight, Joey offered his wing to Hillbilly who made full use of the Aspen’s potential. After a couple of hours working on breaking through what seemed like an impenetrable cap of around 1700’, a few friendly clouds rolled in and offered some assistance. Soon I could see Hillbilly making his way across the bay. The temptation was too much to resist. Taking advantage of the additional lift offered by the cummies, I soon set out for my own crossing and joined him on the other side. What a feeling to finally make it! With conditions cooperating, it was time to top up on the razor backs prior to heading further down.

Kualoa Valley opened up below and one more set of ridges rose between us and the other side. Quite a sight from up above. With Bill in the lead, we continued on to fly over the Ranch and on to a view of Chinaman’s Hat. Soon it was decision time as to whether to land at the kite park, or make the return trip back. Great friends and cold ones waiting on the beach won the argument. After a few more photos and some play time in the sun’s setting rays, we found ourselves back over Kahana Bay. With plenty of height, some spirals were the order of the day as the moon glowed in the background. The wind had picked up by this time and with Billy soaring the trees, I set up for landing. We were soon met by everyone on the beach for some great retelling of the day’s flights.

This story would not be complete without mention of Andrew, a new student who on that day flew his first flight. Though not just any flight – this one lasted seven hours! Not much you can say to that.

Big thanks to everyone for looking after me and making this trip so amazing. You guys a great bunch and did a wonderful job of making me feel very welcome.

I look forward to seeing some of you at the Rat, and hopefully the rest when I have a chance to return.

All the Best,
Photo Gallery - Oahu


Gravity said...

Congratulations on scoring good flying weather. It was fun to fly with a fellow Canuck. See ya in the summer?

Thom said...

Looking forward to Part 2 the Big Island Chapter of hopefully an unending book of Hawaii Flying.

Come Back Soon,



Louise said...

Link through name above to the rest of the photos from Oahu.

Louise :)