Hang Gliding Basics for Beginners : Launching in High Winds in Hang Gliding

Hang Gliding Basics for Beginners : Launching in High Winds in Hang Gliding


Hi, this is David Duke, welcome to Expert
Village. In this next clip, we’re going to talk about a high wind launch. Today’s winds
are not high, and you would never want to go into high winds without your instructor
saying that you were qualified to do so, or you’re definitely going to hurt yourself.
As you move into high winds, you often have someone helping you. Today, my wife and pilot
Janet is going to, to help me. She’s going to hold on to the nose, and that helps me
if it gets a little gusty, if the wind was blowing really strong and it wants to pull
it back, she’ll keep my nose down, she’ll help me walk out to the edge of the cliff,
if it’s really blowing hard, it can be a bit of a challenge to get the glider out there.
The glider that you pick to fly in high winds also has to be appropriate. This glider really
won’t go much more than thirty-five miles an hour. And since the winds here on the coast
can blow easily at forty miles an hour or higher, this wouldn’t be the right glider
to fly if it was too windy, you would get blown backwards, and blown into whatever,
the barbed wire fence, or over the cliff, etcetera. Pretty much like people pick a surfboard.
Small ones for small, choppy waves and long ones for, bigger rides and different, different
whatever you want to do. They have different speeds and different capabilities. In a high
wind launch, she would initially be on the nose, and then she’d move to a side wire and
help assist me there, right before I launch. And this is where the final part of clear
comes from, I would say clear, and she would let go. Because if she was to hold on, I would
launch, and my glider would turn into a turn, the wing would get up in the wind, and the
nasty tumble that way. She’s going to hold on over the wires, so that I can fly out from
under them at a moment’s notice if she wanted. And she doesn’t do a death grip, and she doesn’t
do an under-hand grip, that can’t let me go very easily.

3 Comments on “Hang Gliding Basics for Beginners : Launching in High Winds in Hang Gliding”

  1. NOTE: The hang glider pilot shown was asked to do this as a favor by the film maker- a paraglider pilot selling videos to Expert Village
    It was intended as a BASIC OVERVIEW only! It may look like complete instruction, but is NOT! There is so much more to learn that can ONLY COME FROM AN INSTRUCTOR BEING PRESENT see USHPA.org
    The pilot had no script nor chance to see/edit the video/text. It's pretty good, but (WARNING!) there are several errors, cuts/omissions & a few misrepresentations.

  2. …Still flying, but not if the winds at takeoff or LZ are (or expected to be) about 20+ MPH unless rather smooth, with limited gust factor and switchiness. Best winds have been the later afternoon 'glass-offs' of 12 to 17 MPH or so, and lighter if more buoyant!

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