FlyBC "Site of the Day" - January 31/2015



San Marcos Despegue, Jalisco, Mexico


"It is only in adventure that some people succeed in knowing themselves - in finding themselves." - Andre Gide

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Date
        Site        
Forecast
Winds
@
3000'
in knots
  Lapse  
Rate
°C/1000'
Cloud
Base
in Meters
Comments
1/31/15
San Marcos early

Guadalajara Mexico

A mix of clouds and sun. High 24C. Winds SW at 15 to 30 km/h.
240° @ 15
-3.2°C (unstable)
3300 metres
Coaches Corner for January 31, 2015 - San Marcos early as the SW winds stay all day long and will get strong later.



We are fully into the Mexico Tours now. New dates and a longer season going until March 2015.



Used Gear List:

Ozone Element II M EN-A in Orange/Yellow - $1300 with 20 hours
Ozone Element II L EN-A in Burgundy/Yellow - $1400 with 40 hours
Ozone Mojo 3 XL EN-A from 2011 - $1250 with 50 hours
Ozone Rush 3 M EN-B in red/yellow from 2013 - $2000 CDN less than 60 hours

Ozone Delta 1 M in Red from 2011 - $1400 CDN 60 hours.
Ozone Delta 2 ML (2 in stock from 2013) in orange/blue - $2700 CDN 80 hours
Ozone Delta 2 L in green/black - $2700 CDN 60 hours
Ozone Delta 2 S in orange/blue - $2700 CDN 80 hours
Gin Tribe M in grey/blue (90-110 kgs) - $1500 CDN with 30 hours (one year old)

Fantom 220 Paramotor for sale - $3999 with 5 hours total time. Paramotor only, no wing. We have new & used paramotor wings in stock.

Current Demo Gear: Gin Atlas (S), Gin Fuse Tandem (2 - Size 41), Gin Tribe (ML), Ozone Delta 2 (ML & S), SupAir XA13 Pod Harness L.



FlyBC is an authorized distributor for Ozone , Gin , SupAir, Flytec, Nova, ParaJet Paramotors, Blackhawk Paramotors, APCO, Wills Wing.

1/29/15
Tapalpa all day

Guadalajara Mexico

Sunny. High 27C. Winds light and variable.
070° @ 6
-3.0°C (unstable)
3000 metres
Tapalpa Report - we headed to Tapalpa at 10 am, as the SE winds were forecast stay all day long.

Jonathon had a new student Phil from Quebec who has been training in Colima for the past 4 days and he is now ready to fly, but Colima is not student friendly . . . so he met us on Tapalpa Launch to get Phil's first flight.

The plan was for Jonathon to fly down and check the air for Phil and then I would launch him and guide him partway out.

Jonathan flew out and we also launched our Phil (Ibis) too and waited for the go ahead to launch Phil (student). As this could get confusing we named Quebec Phil "Phillip (Felipe)".

See how well Phil Ibis launched, except we missed his brake tangle as he inflated his Buzz Z.



Felipe launched well and I could see right away he could not get in his harness. He has a Swing Connect reversible harness and if the seatboard gets caught behind the back of the pilot it is a "bitch" to get in. Felipe had a stirrup but the leg straps were set so long he was hanging pretty low. He finally got in around 2/3 of the flight duration right when Jonathon took over guiding.

He had a good landing for his first flight in the Piano LZ.

Our Phil made the Piano for the first time and he stayed up landing sometime after Felipe, to get a ride back up.

All the while this was happening my newest student Adam was kiting the Element II M on Tapalpa Launch and had mastered the FlyBC Reverse Technique well, and was ready to fly . . . except that we wanted to do a tandem first.

While we took a break Herminio arrived overhead and put on a show doing a Death Spiral Tip Drag at launch.



Jonathon & Phil I took off again and it was stronger, too strong for Felipe so they had a nice flight thermalling to the north as we kited some more and eventually drove down to head to San Marcos as it turned S to SW on launch.

From Mexico2015
We arrived to dust storms on Laguna San Marcos and tailwinds on launch so an early dinner back at the house.

1/29/15
Tapalpa all day

Guadalajara Mexico

Sunny. High 27C. Winds light and variable.
070° @ 6
-3.0°C (unstable)
3000 metres
Tapalpa Report - we headed again to Tapalpa, as the SE winds were to stay all day long.

It was flyable but it stayed NE all day making XC attempts somewhat harder.

Phil got one flight right after lunch and managed to flatland thermal to his favourite fields to the south, while Norm went higher and after scoping out the roads to the new Sayula Launch via paraglider, he landed next to the Sayula Futball fields where he said it was hard to get down.

From Mexico2015
Norm's LZ and packup crew in Sayula.

From Mexico2015
Back on launch Phil was feeling Montezuma's Revenge so he offered to drive so I could grab a flight.

Despite the strongish NE winds Norm & I were able to climb out above launch. He headed north along the ridge and I pushed out towards the crossroad LZ to save the retrieve as we were supposed to meet Adam back at the hotel as he is arriving this afternoon.

From Mexico2015
Norm made it to the cross and then got hammered by leeside thermals, while I made a slow trip out to the LZ geting down to 9-10 kph at times but there were thermals along the way to keep me up.

Somehow Norm got lost . . . or his location was lost in translation and we had to leave him to his own resources to get back to the Hotel. A bus ride got him nearly all the way home.

1/28/15
Tapalpa all day

Guadalajara Mexico

Sunny. High 27C. Winds light and variable.
060° @ 6
-3.0°C (unstable)
3200 metres
Tapalpa Report - I took the Suburban in early to replace the fuel pump as we had a gas odour the past few weeks when driving up hills. Oddly that is most of our driving . . . up hills to fly??

After noon we headed to Tapalpa with Colleen, Norm, Bev & Phil, as the NE winds were forecasted all day long.

Herminio put on a show for us on launch as it was pretty strong but perfectly flyable & top-landable.

Phil & Norm got ready together and Norm launched first but found only ratty windblown thermals. He landed at the Piano after a short soaring session.

Phil got a few lucky climbs and the past 2 days of NE thermals has taught him how to stay in the shitty lift. He climbed above launch out on the flats and we saw him heading south up high as Colleen launched.

From Mexico2015
Colleen got some nice lift right off launch but she hit the crap on the toes of the gulleys, and had to work hard before she got nice climbs over the flats too.

From Mexico2015
Bev drove down with me and we saw both Phil & Colleen headed south and we found Norm first, but missed Colleen somehow near the highway to Sayula as we took the wrong road to find Phil.

We ended up near the Sayula Brick Factories, a first for us. I guess the soil here works good for brick manufacturing as there were many in operation.

We doubled back to get Colleen before finding Phil at his usual spot south of the Piano LZ.

We found a possible launch spot on the hills west of Sayula about 10 years ago, so we went to check them out after flying and almost got the Suburban stuck as it powered out on one of the dusty climbs and I had to deadstick backwards down the hill.

Everyone got out to push the truck off a huge rock and hiked down after me, cause they were afraid I would run off the road.

From Mexico2015
The truck and all our gear was very dusty after the expedition. Maybe next time we can make it up to check out the launches.

1/27/15
Tapalpa all day

Guadalajara Mexico

Sunny. High 27C. Winds light and variable.
070° @ 6
-3.3°C (unstable)
3700 metres
Tapalpa Report - Phil & I headed to Tapalpa, as the SE winds stay all day long.

Herminio said he got 1:30 before we arrived at noon, plying on the ridge with an un-named Gin pilot.

Phil had a good first flight climbing in the NE thermals getting above launch out over the flats.

From Mexico2015
Herminio was also here trying a new set of linked maneuvers: heli, to death spiral-tip drag, to top-landing. Unfortunately the lift was not good enough to link all three moves.

Phil landed at his favourite XC field south & west of the Piano LZ and I found him fairly fast.

We went back up and it was still working so Phil got another flight working more flatland thermals.

1/26/15
Tapalpa & Colima all day

Guadalajara Mexico

A mix of clouds and sun. High 32C. Winds SW at 10 to 15 km/h.
250° @ 6
-3.3°C (unstable)
3700 metres
Colima Report - we headed towards Tapalpa and Colima, as the SW winds were forecast to come later, and it was skunky here in Chapala (even looking like rain).

Norm, Bev, Phil & I headed south on the Cuota and it was raining near San Marcos, so we kept going past Tapalpa. Colima is another 80 kms southwest so it took about an hour and we were on Colima Launch at 1145 am.

There were amny Finnish Pilots here for one more day of their tour, being guided by Miguelon.

From Mexico2015
I was taking pictures of the newly renovated launch. With government funding they landscaped the terrain and added Astroturf, so the launch is amazing now.

From Mexico2015
There were birds soaring and cycles straight up the hill as one pilot inflated his glider and flew straight into the tress south of launch.

He was unhurt and many pilots went down to help him out.

A few more flew off and it was obvious that it was leeside from the NE and not much fun.

From Mexico2015
We waited in the Peanut Gallery til 2 pm and then bailed for home.

From Mexico2015
We stopped at Tapalpa on the way home as Peri said it the wind was "en frente, poco fuerte" - comimg up the front a bit strong.

On launch it was perfect! Birds soaring to the north.

I got the Delta 2 L ready and was kiting on launch waiting for a stronger cycle and decided to go for the bird thermal, and was rewarded with a nice climb above launch despite it being cloudy and after 4 pm.

From Mexico2015
Phil launched after me and flew right through the same thermal and had to engotiate the gulley slopes out to the valley where he landed north of the regular LZ.

I hovered around the valley for another 20 minutes playing with the vultures before landing at the Piano LZ. Nice to play with the flatland thermals here.





1/25/15
Tapalpa & San Marcos all day

Guadalajara Mexico

Mostly cloudy skies. High 23C. Winds light and variable.
150° @ 6
-2.9°C (unstable)
2900 metres
San Marcos Report - we were planning to go to Tapalpa first to fly and then San Marcos after 3 pm, as the SW winds come later.

It was Gerry's last flying day and he had flown 8 out of 9 days so we wanted a good one. It was cloudy but the lapse rate was good and clouds were forming over the peaks.

We were getting fuel at the Pemex behind San Marcos when we received a text from Camilo that it was blwoing over the back at Tapalpa at 1030 am.

We headed up San Marcos instead and found light SW cycles so Gerry got ready. Phil & Colleen were right behind Gerry getting ready too.

Gerry launched and headed north and started climbing nicely depite no sun.

He was soon above the North Peak at around 2600 metres.

Phil launched next and was getting a good climb to the north too as Colleen launched.

From Mexico2015
They were all thermalling around in different areas and getting up.

After 30 minutes Gerry headed out over the salt flats and made it past the Cuota Highway still higher than the others.

I started driving down as I saw Phil heading out too.

As I arrived at the Kordich Airstrip I saw a red/orange glider in the trees to the north of the LZ??? WTF!

From Mexico2015
It was not windy, certainly not thermic? What happened?

From Mexico2015
Apparently an un-named pilot flew out too low and sunk into a patch of mesquite & cactus trees fortunately landing softlay and safely on the ground but the wing overshot into the trees.

Good thing I just bought some loppers for road maintenance as they were needed to get the wing out after disconnecting the risers.

We headed back up for another flight after rebuilding the wing and stopped to check out some new launch spots as it started to sprinkle on us.

Off to Jocotepec for lunch as it was going to rain the balance of the day.

From Mexico2015


Elk Report - Hi Jaime:

Scored! Arrived with Larry and David (who was hiking with his dogs) at Elk top to 35k S winds.

Was quite happy to hike down but waited and observed cycles down to 18k. Took off in a lull. Flew to Thurston (around the corner ) twice, got to app 1700 m in BBS Lift.

Flew to Eddy's for tea. Not the conclusion I expected when I reached the gusty summit. As usual my Alpina2 rocked in all departments.

Thermalling days just around the corner, Cheers - Biff



14th FAI World Paragliding Championships, Roldanillo, Colombia 2015 Report - Comp Day Thirteen with a 82 km task Blog & Results here.

1/24/15
El Chante & San Marcos all day

Guadalajara Mexico

A mix of clouds and sun during the morning will give way to cloudy skies this afternoon. High around 25C. Winds SSE at 10 to 15 km/h.
140° @ 12
-3.2°C (unstable)
3200 metres
El Chante Report - we planned to do El Chante first and then San Marcos as the SW winds come later.

From Mexico2015
It is a lot closer than driving to Tapalpa and the South winds looked a bit strong for Tapalpa, maybe only one flight so we took our time and got to El Chante around noon after a nice breakfast in Joco El Centro.

The remnants of the ferria are still around town but many of the booths have moved on. This is really an excellent time to be in Mexico at the ferrias, muchos cerveza y margaritas!

We arrived to El Chante around noon and it was cycling in nicely and the birds were soaring.

Colleen insisted I fly first and take the guys XC to Ajijic to the east.

Tough task with some strong east winds on the lake but what the heck?

I launched and climbed out to the east and headed into the gulleys following some vultures. That worked!

From Mexico2015
All the way east was slow maybe 10 kph ground speeds but good climbs that one could only S turn in, 360s blew you back into the sink.

I kept my altitude east until I disappeared from launch view as Tobias & Phil launched. Tobias went first.

From Mexico2015
And Phil launched after a near Tortuga!

From Mexico2015
As I crept around the corner to San Juan Cosala I got the best climb of the day but it kept taking me back west so no chance of getting more east and no one was following me anyway.

So I crept out over the town and the Raquet Club where we rent a house and flew out to the beach on Lake Chapala.

From Mexico2015
Nice winds for landing as I floated in. The sheep were not impressed as they scattered around.

The guys floated around El Chante until they landed at the Triangle Field behind Sierra Lake and Colleen drove down and retrieved them.

As short walk to the Tienda for a New Mix and I took a bus back to the hotel for 7 pesos.

From Mexico2015
XC is a lot more fun when you can self-retrieve with no hitchiking!

From Mexico2015
We took a break and then headed to San Marcos to test out the new tires I bought last night . . . a new brand from China called "HighFly" and the model is "Vigorouso" so they must be good!

The tires worked better than expected with no slipping and a smoother ride to San Marcos launch.

Unfortunately the strong South forecast was correct and the new FlyBC windmeter supplied by students Iain, Scott & Nicole showed some leeside conditions on launch.

From Mexico2015
Further out we had duststorms (tolveneros) on the dry lake beds.

From Mexico2015
The birds were having fun in the ratty leeside lift but they can land in the trees when they have had enough so we bagged up and headed to ajijic for shopping and dinner.

It is Tobias' last night and Gerry only has one more day so we treated them to Robertos for fine dining and desserts.

From Mexico2015
\ Norm got his Vocho going after a frustrating two weeks of repairs and downtime, tomorrow he may tackle Tapalpa with it!

From Mexico2015


14th FAI World Paragliding Championships, Roldanillo, Colombia 2015 Report - Comp Day Twelve with a 122 km task Blog & Results here. The winner only made 98 kms so no one in goal, perhaps too ambitious a task?

1/23/15
San Marcos all day

Guadalajara Mexico

Sunny to partly cloudy. High 77F. Winds WSW at 5 to 10 mph.
210° @ 7
-3.2°C (unstable)
3200 metres
San Marcos Report - San Marcos was the call as SW winds come in all day.

We arrived on launch to nice SW cycles and Wayne flew off first and climbed out to the north. He is still a bit apprehensive to do tighter turns so he flew out of the lift band before we found him another thermal further out.

From Mexico2015
He was doing well when he flew straight out to the LZ? He had unlocked the radio and changed channels somehow during his weight shifting so he was on his own. Good thing that he has developed the skills to land on his own during the past 18 flights. Landing conditions were light SW and not too thermic.

Gerry, Norm & Tobias took off next and were "duking it out" to the north as I drove down with a low tire.

From Mexico2015
I limped the Suburban down the hill stopping to add air a few times.

I located the Taller de Llantas in San Marcos and it was Caesar's uncles shop. We have known Caesar since he was 8 years old and used to pack our gliders for pesos (he is now 23 and not interested in packing gliders).

From Mexico2015
Two holes were repaired but the San Marcos Road is chewing up the tires pretty badly so I will have to invest in some new rubber soon.

Gerry had already landed but Tobias was overhead San Marcos heading south and doing pretty well and had logged 1:30 already.

From Mexico2015
Norm was already at the Magic Hill to the south and headed home for the Milk Run to San Juan Cosala and more VW repairs.

Tire fixed and I was headed out to get Wayne & Gerry for another round. Tobias landed at the South Airstrip to refuel with some water.

Forecast said light wind with good thermal index to 3250 metres so lets go!

Back on launch it was as forecast and Wayne had a solid reverse launch following Senor Tortuga & Tobias out into the thermals.

Both Wayne & Tortuga found some nice lift and were working it south, as Tobias worked the north bowl.

After some coaching Wayne found his own pace and he was climbing well.

I sent him to the saddle as I drove down and told him to work any lift and he was soon high over the saddle & powerlines heading east to Jocotepec.

Gerry & Tobias had already headed over the back too so no long retrieves tonight!

Wayne landed softly & safely after establishing the wind direction as SE.

From Mexico2015
He was pretty pumped to get his last flight here and an XC one at that!

He says "I flew from there to here. All by myself!"

From Mexico2015


14th FAI World Paragliding Championships, Roldanillo, Colombia 2015 Report - Comp Day Eleven with a 66 km task Blog & Results here.

1/22/15
San Marcos all day

Guadalajara Mexico

Sunny to partly cloudy. High around 25C. Winds WSW at 15 to 30 km/h.
260° @ 17
-3.2°C (unstable)
3500 metres
San Maquina Report - after sombrero shopping in Joco, we headed directly to San Marcos as the SW winds come in early today and are forecast to get strong!

From Mexico2015
Wayne set up first as he is a student with only 16 flights so we don't want him to get blown out. Nice CUs over the flats. Nice 15 kph launch winds. Vultures doing the wind dummy task showed it was smooth lift.

From Mexico2015
Wayne launched his Ozone Rush III L and followed the slope north and was climbing but turned out too wide and was in serious sink. Rather than follow direction back to the lift he headed out to the LZ. Over the hay fields below we found a thermal and he worked it well, first left and then when we changed directions he clearly turns more cooordinated to the right. And he started to climb back to Launch.

Gerry went next and climbed above launch fast on his Ozone Delta 2.

Tobias launched last on his nice new Ozone Buzz Z4, and also climbed out as Wayne thermalled around and landed at the Kordich Airfield after 26 minutes.

From Mexico2015
I drove down to retrieve Wayne and conditions were still good at Launch and light winds in the LZ . . . maybe the forecast is wrong.

Down at the LZ I found both Gerry & Wayne packing up with Tobias above launch.

From Mexico2015
As it was still light down here we raced back up after refilling with water & cokes.

From Mexico2015
On the way back up Gerry rescued a runaway donkey who had broken free of his tether. Good deed for the day!

From Mexico2015
Back on launch now it was getting strong and Tobias got some serious cloudsuck to the North Peak before heading south.

From Mexico2015
We decided the forecast was probably right as it looked like it was ODing around Jocotepec.

As we drove down we saw Tobias heading south to the saddle. Not duststorms yet but the potential was there.

From Mexico2015
Tobias jumped over the back high but just made the highway LZ so it was a convenient pickup. He had logged over two hours on this flight.

We thought we might try later if the winds dropped but as I got my oil changed the mechanic asked if we fly in these conditions. I said not if it is going to rain. about 10 minutes later it started to drizzle and then by dark it was heavy rains.



14th FAI World Paragliding Championships, Roldanillo, Colombia 2015 Report - Comp Day Ten with no task due to rain. Blog & Results here.

1/21/15
El Chante in the AM, then San Marcos all day

Guadalajara Mexico

Sun and clouds mixed. High 27C. Winds W at 10 to 15 km/h.
260° @ 9
-3.2°C (unstable)
3750 metres
San Diablo Report - we headed to San Marcos at noon, as the SW winds come in early today.

Sometime around 915 am local time, the Colima Volcano erupted but we were not in vsiual range to see it, but it was recorded by a webcam nearby. Mashable Weblink here.

I sent Gerry, Tobias & Wayne to breakfast at the El Chante Spa Hotel as the welder was repairing the Suburban door latches after a few months of pounding up San Marcos.

Good news was that they only charged 50 pesos to weld up the two door straps (about 4 CDN$).

I was to take Sergio for a tandem today, as last year the weather did not agree on his only days off. Bev offered to drive which made this possible.

Camilo had a tandem to do with his sponsor as well and he brought up his Jeep too.

I launched Wayne first into a nice mellow San Diablo cycle and he was off and climbing . . . until he flew too far away from the mountain and was soon over the LZ.

Next off was Peter B on Colleen's Delta 2. He is a maestro of the San Diablo thermals and was soon over 3000 metres before heading south.

I Wayne knew how to land himself by now as he has 15 flights and several hours, so I setup the tandem launched after a few minutes of kiting as Sergio is not very strong (he is about 125 lbs), and finally we got to the edge as Camilo helped with a push off.

As we climbed out to the North Peak, I watched Wayne setup many times and he was almoat back to launch at one point!

After 25 minutes, Wayne finally touched down nicely.

After we peaked out at 3000 metres, Sergio & I headed south too but I saw Peter B not that high south of the saddle, but he eventually got to cloudbase and was heading home to San Juan Cosala.

We hit the saddle low and the mountain was not lifting but there was a nice CU over San Marcos town and I caught a nice climb there.

From Mexico2015
I was concentration on the climb and did not notice that Sergio was looking down too much.

From Mexico2015
At 35 minutes the first burp happened. I quickly stuffed Sergio's head through the spreader bars, my favourite technique to avoid getting sprayed with puke!

Sure enough, he unloaded and was totally incoherent.

We were still in the nice climb but Bev was headed down to get Wayne so I flew out to the closest spot to land near the Beer Store and we had a super nice landing and Sergio laid down as I packed up.

First puker of 2015! In fact it has been about 4 years since anyone got sick and it was not even that rough! Next time Dramamine for the passengers!

Norm & Tobias launched after Camilo and I saw Camilo get a great climb under a CU north of the Saddle as I packed up and it looked like he topped out at 3500 metres before flying home to EL Chante. Later I heard he said it was super-rought there and he had to pull "big ears" to avoid the cloudsuck.

Norm flew south high and disappeared landing at San Juan Cosala.

Tobias hung in and flew through the saddle south and was getting banged around but flew hard for 1.5 hours before landing to the south of San Marcos.

We were in town getting refreshments and some fruit from the fruit truck.

From Mexico2015
You don't have to go to the grocery store here, they come to you. and is it super cheap!

From Mexico2015
Gerry was feeling the sun from the past few days and drove down Camilo's Jeep.

We went back up but the consensus was that everyone was tired so we headed home at 4:30 pm as we saw Granger's Rangers flying out to land at Kordich's.

Later Norm was commenting that it was rough, as did Camilo & Tobias. Peter and I thought it was not that bad but perhaps that is because we were an hour earlier in the air? The later flights looked smooth from launch at least.



14th FAI World Paragliding Championships, Roldanillo, Colombia 2015 Report - Comp Day Nine with a 92 km task. Blog & Results here. Some controversy as airspace violations zero out some scores.

1/20/15
Tapalpa first, then San Marcos all day

Guadalajara Mexico

Sun and clouds mixed. High 27C. Winds light & variable.
260° @ 5
-3.2°C (unstable)
3750 metres
Tour Report - We headed to Tapalpa for breakfast at La Ceja.

Scott had already eaten so he set up the Element II L as it was blwong in nicely at La Ceja launch.

He had a few over the back cycles but mostly inflow as he launched and headed out to join the birds.

Unfortunately all he found was ratty lift and lots of sink. He ended up in a thorny field near the water ponds and hiked out to the highway.

When everyone was finished breakfast, we drove over to the main launch to find out it was leeside and had been all morning.

We got a few cycles as it warmed up but nothing looked right so we drove down to get Scott and head to San Marcos.

We arrived to San Marcos at 1 pm, to find perfect SW cycles and everyone got ready.

Gerry launched first, then Tobias, Scott, Wayne (who climbed fast but headed out to check out the LZ) and then Nicole.

From Mexico2015
Nicole climbed out everywhere on her sweet little Geo 4 S, and she even looked like she was setting up a landing at the 30 minute mark and then climbed out above launch over the salt flats.

Gerry went too far south and was in a salt flat to the south but not near enough to town to get a water.

Tobias & Scott (on an Element II M this time) headed north and got a +5 m/s climb to 3200 metres.

Scott did some exploring north to the "death hole" and found rotor & sink and also found that even an Element II can collapse before being directed to stay on the windward & sunny slopes. He climbed right back up again after that exploration.

Iain was almost off a few times but got flustered, so I said wait here while I get the others and I drove down as Stefan and 11 others arrived on launch.

Iain watched and said there were some pretty exciting (?) takeoffs including one guy that rolled down the ramp in a ball but somehow the wing stopped him from falling off.

When I got down to watch Tobias & Scott land, we discussed going back up and the concensus was that everyone had a great day.

That left Iain on top, so I got Stefan to launch him and he was soon soaring with the Finns.

When we mentioned we were going to head back to town he flew out and had a sweet landing down the runway.



14th FAI World Paragliding Championships, Roldanillo, Colombia 2015 Report - Comp Day Eight with a 102 km task. Blog & Results here. Felix Rodriguez flying an EnZo2, another of our business partners in Canada, comes in first place!

1/19/15
San Marcos all day

Guadalajara Mexico

Sun and clouds mixed. High 27C. Winds W at 10 to 15 km/h.
260° @ 9
-3.2°C (unstable)
3750 metres
San Marcos Report - San Marcos was the place to be as the SW winds were forecast to come in early.

We received texts from Stefan & Miguelon that it was over the back at Tapalpa so we had breakfast at Rochata's bakery (wafles con fruta).

We arrived on launch at noon and it was pretty breezy already, around 20 kph from the SW.

Tobias flew out first and had a great launch on his Buzz Z4 and was off and soaring and making it look good.

From Mexico2015
Scott launched his Zero 17 first try and was trying to thermal but it was too north.

Gerry followed and was getting low to the south and disappeared landing on the flats.

Nicole had a brilliant launch and had some thermalling over the flats making it look easy, while everyone whop stayed on the mountain was sinking.

Iain had a few attempts and finally on the last one he overpulled the Ion 2 and "turtled", hurting his butt so we bagged his wing.

Scott managed to get a ride back up and it was getting very windy so he bravely pulled out his Fazer 2 12 metre, and launched it swooping therough the trees without enough brakes to managed the angle of attack. Exciting as he sped through the air and sink to land in a hayfield just below launch. Pretty fast wing in 2000 metre air!

From Mexico2015
I drove down to get everyone and we tried another cycle.

Everyone got one more flight but it was not working at San Marcos despite good forecasts, such is life. But we flew.

Try as we might, it was not Nicole's day as she could inflate the Geo 4 XS nicely but when she turned to run she overcontrolled her brakes? Finally after a scary swing into the bushes we bagged her wing and drove down.



14th FAI World Paragliding Championships, Roldanillo, Colombia 2015 Report - Comp Day Seven with a 72 km task. Blog & Results here. Torsten from Gin in third place, our business partner in Canada!

1/18/15
Tapalpa today and then to San Marcos

Guadalajara Mexico

Sunny to partly cloudy. High 27C. Winds light and variable.
140° @ 6
-3.1°C (unstable)
3500 metres
From Mexico2015
Tour Report - we got to Tapalpa early for breakfast and the birds were very friendly today.

From Mexico2015
The Harris Hawk got tangled up in a tree and we had to rescue it and put it back on the swing perch.

Then the eagle was letting me pick it up with the glove. Nicole was brave enough to pet it barehanded and the eagle was enjoying the petting.

Then I got the bright idea to feed some egg to the eagle . . . barehanded and it flew across to me landed on my hand and grabbed the egg in one motion. No blood but I got a small puncture on my palm as it landed. It did it a few more times before just sitting next to the table waiting for food.

From Mexico2015
After breakfast we headed to the other launch while Nicole got a horse ride over with a caballero.

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Everyone had good launches and some nice thermalling with Bev L outclimbing Colleen until she hit 10 turns and headed out to the LZ.

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Tobias is here for Day One and was outclimbing the locals!

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He and Gerry climbed high behind launch while the others played out front.

I headed down to retrieve the group around 2 pm and Tobias flew North to find an alternate LZ before we headed to San Marcos.

As we got to launch at San Marcos we saw a few gliders coming in from Tapalpa 50 kms away. Stefan landed at Kordich Airfield on his Delta 2 (getting to the Cross at 3700 metres), waiting for Beto & Sian to come find him.

We had east wind at launch and Scott got one flight off but it was a sledder.

Gerry got a few cycles and was off and looking like a sled ride too before finding a thermal near the gravel pit and climbing to 3000 metres (launch is 2000 metres). He then headed over the back to land near Jocotepec.

Scott managed to get a ride back to launch in a Jeep with some local PG pilots and was back on launch where Tobias had tried a few launch attempts before giving up.

After seeing the Mexican Pilots get off with long runs from the back, Scott took off again and it was over as the lift shut off so we had to drive down the front for his pickup.

Norm got his Vocho home, a nice tricked out VW bug. Ready for launch & retrieve duties after a big tuneup.

From Mexico2015


14th FAI World Paragliding Championships, Roldanillo, Colombia 2015 Report - Comp Day Six with a 57.9 km task. Blog & Results here. Torsten from Gin in third place, our business partner in Canada!

1/17/15
Tapalpa today

Guadalajara Mexico

Partly cloudy. High 26C. Winds light and variable.
140° @ 6
-3.1°C (unstable)
3500 metres
Tour Report - we headed to Tapalpa early after breakfast and everyone had nice flights incvluding Colleen who broke away from here academia for a day or two.

Camilo reported getting to 3200 metres (1200 metres over launch) before getting flushed in a -5 m/s cycle down.

Most everyone landed in the Piano LZ to avoid the retrieves and as we were heading back up for flight #2, we were told it had turned tail.

We headed for lunch at Zacoalco and then on to San Marcos for the glassoff.

We arrived on top with nice moderate West winds and some were having some issues launching, nerves or getting tired but everyone got off and soared til dark.

We had a rare mix of Yellow/Blue wings in the air today: Camilo's Mistral 5, Gerry's Delta 2 & Scott was flying Wayne's Rush III. All very beautiful to see them soaring San Marcos together.

Iain & Nicole discovered that if you went too far south in the NW winds you got flushed but that is part of learning how to read the terrain.

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Colleen launched last but still got to soar with the others.

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Colleen said it was so smooth she pulled out the camera for some shots of Gerry.

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They all landed at the south LZ near the beer store.

From Mexico2015
1/16/15
El Chante today

Guadalajara Mexico

Sunshine and a few clouds. High 26C. Winds light and variable.
180° @ 10
-3.1°C (unstable)
3200 metres
El Chante Report - we went to El Chante early after breakfast in Jocotepec.

From Mexico2015
El Chante was blowing in nice at 1145 when we arrived and Wayne got ready first (keener).

We inadvertantly left one wing at the house so Iain elected to not fly as he had a huge head from partying in the square.

Nicole, Scott & Wayne flew into the Futball Field, little lift this early but they had good launches & landings.

We got a call from Alex D on San Marcos Launch, with his band of Frenchies, and he said it was "on there", 12 kms from the SW, so we raced over.

We arrived to dust storms (as forecast), and Alex apparently had to pull big ears and speedbar to get out of the air.

From Mexico2015
Fortunately, Scott brought his Zero 17 so he got to fly and it was still windy enough he needed to open the trimmers, but he had a nice flight climbing out to the south.

I decided we should go back to EL Chante as it was so south, and we took some of Alex's student with us.

Wayne launched first again, then Nicole followed by Iain.

Iain landed at the other smaller futball field as he got low heading east.

Samuel from Quebec followed Norm east and got an hour before top-landing in a full stall (landing on his back), nice approach but too heavy on his brakes. Thank goodness for airbags.

From Mexico2015
Scott launched last and thermalled around on the Element II L before landing at the big Futball Field.

It was to be Scott's last day here of his course, so he managed three flights, pretty good for the conditions.

Norm got back later having flown down to the Five Star Hotel to got to Walmart for cash.



14th FAI World Paragliding Championships, Roldanillo, Colombia 2015 Report - Comp Day Four with a 86 km task. Blog & Results here. Ozone Team Pilot Felix Rodriguez in first to goal!

1/15/15
Tapalpa today

Guadalajara Mexico

A mix of clouds and sun during the morning will give way to cloudy skies this afternoon. High 26C. Winds light and variable
140° @ 10
-3.1°C (unstable)
3200 metres
Tapalpa Report for January 15, 2015 - we headed to Tapalpa early and had breakfast at La Ceja.

There was a tandem in the air as we played with the eagle & hawk they are training.

From Mexico2015
It was before noon and the tandem was high and top-landed after a 30 minute flight.

Norm launched from La Ceja as we got to the main launch and slid all the way down to La Amiga (the hump out front), where he hit some nasty lift and had a 50% collapse. We could not see the collapse as it was away from us but we saw the gyrations!

A few others had launched before Norm and we high above us and it looked smooth there, jsut stay away from La Amiga.

Scott launched first on the Element II L and had a sledder down to the fingers of the gulleys and he worked valiently to get us but after maybe 15 minutes he was on the ground in the Piano LZ.

Iain launched next on the Element II M and had a similar flight . . . in fact he looked like he was going to land short of making it over the powerlines.

I saw him hit a nice thermal low down near the powerlines and advised he should "figure-8" in it keeping the LZ within glide.

After a few turns he was a few hundred metres over the deck and he could 360 now. He was keeping it flat and was now above launch climbing fast. Norm had also climbed out and says he was getting 2-3 m/s up.

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Wayne launched next after a few flubs and was also sinking low before finding Iain's thermal and he was climbing well too as I sugeested Iain come over to the fields behind launch to top-land and relaunch.

Iain came over high as Huevo top-landed in the normal spot, but I wanted to keep visal contact with Iain as it was only his 12th flight. He was not going down over the top fields so I advised him to do big-ears (a first for him), and he did a perfect "figure 8" approach right to the last few feet and he flared for a soft touchdown. He was buzzing!

From Mexico2015
He should be buzzing . . . some other un-named female instructor who was here a few years ago refused to get this high or top-land even when the truck needed a driver because it was "too rough". She now stays in Canada in the winter for sled-rides.

Wayne was on his own and enjoying his flight and was now at 40 minutes in the air and getting to 2300 metres looking smooth.

He drifted pretty far north and I was suggesting he hang out over the CrossRoad LZ but he could not figure out my description (despite being right beside the LZ?) so he flew upwind towards the Piano LZ low, but he made it almost there as it was very buoyant with a fairly light headwind. He found a nice horse pasture to land in near a small road with a few birds circling overhead. 48 minutes on the vario and he was very pleased to be flying Lee's old Rush III!

I drove down to get Scott & Wayne and Iain sat one out as he was still buzzing after his great flight.

We got back to launch in 30 minutes and conditions took a turn (a SW turn), it was occasionally over the back but Scott had a great reverse launch and was pinned in the air over the gulleys. It was much windier in the air and the thermals were chopped up.

He flew for 20 minutes landing in a field near Wayne's LZ refusing to take my directions to thermal to the CrossRoads LZ. He thinks he knows better after only 14 flights?

We all drove down to get Scott and headed to San Marcos but there were dust storms so we headed home as it was 5 pm.

From Mexico2015


14th FAI World Paragliding Championships, Roldanillo, Colombia 2015 Report - Comp Day Three with a 44 km task. Blog & Results here. There was only one in goal, which makes for frustrated pilots. Some very good pilots came in less than a km short so some sink was not expected as they raced to goal.



Elk Mtn. Chilliwack Report from Biff - We've had some stellar weather here lately . . . not quite enough to soar, but I have been up Elk four times in seven days, landing once at Prest, once at Eddy's and once all the way to my school.

From Mexico2015
On January 14th, it was quite comfortable hiking Teszka style all the way to the top!

From Mexico2015
The fourth hike I sheepishly admit was to search for my wallet which I foolishly left in a non-zipped pocket on the outside of my pack simply because I hate fishing the black wallet out of the black pack! I couldn't find it after landing. The good news is that only the bears and deer will have much use for it - Biff

1/14/15
El Chante early and then San Marcos later looks like the places to fly today

Guadalajara Mexico

Considerable cloudiness. High around 25C. Winds light and variable.
140° @ 6
-3.2°C (unstable)
3200 metres
Tour Report - we headed to El Chante early and bagged a nice flight with some inversion thermalling and thermic landing zones as the students get more skills.

It was a bit hazy with the inversion layer right at launch altitude.

From Mexico2015
Scott flew off first on the Element II L and got some thermalling out front, as did Wayne on his Rush III L.

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Iain was trying out the Nova Ion 2 as he loads that up a bit better than the Element II M and did well landing at the Futball Field, while Wayne & Scott were in a corn field in front.

Norm was planning to fly down to check out his VW at the mechanic but only made it a few kms east.

From Mexico2015
We then headed to lunch and then San Marcos as the SW winds were to come in later.

We arrived to strongish SW cycles and it was a bit of a struggle for some (Norm apparently too as I had left launch before he setup).

Iain and Wayne launched after a few tries and were down at Kordich Airfield.

Scott wanted to try his new Ozone Zero 17, but he had not kited it before and got a heaping helping of "humble pie", but finally got off with a forward launch and had a blast. He is used to a 79 sq ft. Skydiving canopy so the Zero felt more to his taste in speed and handling.

From Mexico2015
We decided to bail on another flight at San Marcos as the strong SW turned to strong South and there were small dust storms on Laguna San Marcos, so back to El Chante which faces due South.

Scott launched first and headed east along the ridge and was almost to San Juan Cosala before turning back to land at the Tortas Field near the highway and he walked back to the hotel.

From Mexico2015
By the time Wayne & Iain launched it was almost dark so I couldn't see their approaches into the Futball Field but they did well landing right in the centre.

The students are flying well and are learning many skills and are up to 12 flights each in their short stay.



14th FAI World Paragliding Championships, Roldanillo, Colombia 2015 Report - Comp Day Two with a 106.6 km task. Results here. There were 62 pilots in goal, which makes for very happy pilots and a good secondday. Some very good pilots came in less than a km short so some sink was not expected as they raced to goal.

Worlds 2015 Task 2 from tomceunen on Vimeo.

1/13/15
Tapalpa early and then San Marcos later on the way home looks like the places to fly today

Guadalajara Mexico

Sunny. High 25C. Winds light and variable.
140° @ 7
-3.2°C (unstable)
3200 metres
Tapalpa Report - We headed to Tapalpa early as it looked good for student flying all day. East winds forecasted til after 3 pm.

Scott was the first one ready and had a nice reverse launch despite his GoPro catching a C line on the transition.

He caught some lift along the way but mostly a buoyant sled ride.

The winds then switched to SW and the other 7 pilots were denied a flight.

I took everyone to La Ceja Launch and they had lunch while I retrieved Scott.

Back on top we had a snack while the others finished their meals before heading back to the main launch.

Scott launched again followed by Iain, Wayne, Bev H & Maurice. Some thermals to play in but even Stefan who launched from La Ceja could not stay up. Stefan helped guide some student landings as part of his Instructor Apprenticeship.

It started to blow down again so I headed down to take everyone to San Marcos as the SW winds were come in later.

Scott got a ride up with some Finnish pilots and somehow missed me driving down and was initially stranded on top, but the Finnish pilots got him off launch and he was in the LZ when I arrived.

We got to San Marcos quite quickly as the Cuota exit is now reopened across the lake bed.

Arriving on launch to perfect SW winds everyone got ready with Iain launching first and catching some nice thermals. It is amazing how quickly we can get a student from kiting to thermalling safely down here in Mexico!

From Mexico2015
It does help that we are training on Ozone Element IIs which are safe, easy to kite, easy to thermal and with enough speed to launch in moderate winds (+25 kph).

Wayne launched next with a great reverse launch and was also thermalling around on his Ozone Rush III, which was pre-trained to themal by Lee.

Scott was last student off for his fourth flight today!

From Mexico2015
Bev H & Maurice flew off and tried to collide a few times (more ridge rule training needed).

It was just Norm, Bev L & me left on launch and despite Bev L's jet lag, she pulled out her Ozone Buzz Z4 and took off and started soaring!

From Mexico2015
As with everyone else we advised Bev to hug the ridgeline south to the new FlyBC LZ down near Chela's Beer Store and Norm & I drove down.

As we crested the hill we saw Bev climbing to the South and she stayed in close and was past the saddle.

Apparently she was following some vultures.

Scott was still soaring a south face too, as Bev L landed.

I suggested Scott try a "big ear landing" and he held it in til the flair and did not have to do any turns and landed right in the perfect spot to pack up.

From Mexico2015
Off to dinner for Bev H & Maurice's last night here to celebrate flying everyday of their 10 day tour.



14th FAI World Paragliding Championships, Roldanillo, Colombia 2015 Report - Comp Day One with a 88 km task. Results here. There were 138 pilots in goal, which makes for very happy pilots and a good first day.

1/12/15
El chante early and then San Marcos looks like the place to fly today

Guadalajara Mexico

Sunny. High 24C. Winds light and variable.
200° @ 7
-3.2°C (unstable)
3500 metres
El Chante Report - we went to El Chante at noon and everyone had a nice flight with landings at the Futball Field for most with Maurice and Wayne landing in the corn field below for a new challenge for them.

From Mexico2015
New students Iain & Scott have the approach dialled!

Camilo launched last and was able to soar just above launch as we drove down.

From Mexico2015
We had a quick lunch and then headed to San Marcos as the SW winds were to come in later.

Unfortunately, we arrived to east winds and we waited. The Quebec Contingent from Colima arrived and we said wait with us.

Finally we got a few lame cycles and a few of the Quebec Pilots launched after many tries and they got some soaring in the glass-off but it was already getting too dark so we drove home for a debrief.



Woodside Report - Martin N did a "hike & fly" and managed 25 minutes of lift before getting shaded out.

1/11/15
San Marcos looks like the place to fly today

Guadalajara Mexico

Sunny to partly cloudy. High 23C. Winds light and variable.
200° @ 4
-3.2°C (unstable)
3500 metres
San Marcos Report - We headed straight to San Juan Cosala beach to kite as we had new student Scott from TO here for lessons. He is a tandem skydiver with over 2000 jumps but he has never kited a paraglider plus the others needed some kiting practice while we were waiting for the winds to switch.

From Mexico2015
Wayne is here from Hope as well and he has only had 2 high flights at Woodside so he was kiting to get "tuned up".

We had nice SE breeze on the lakefront and lots of room on Norm's runway.

After 2 hours everyone looked ready to fly so off to San Marcos. Thanks to Colleen & Norm for helping out with the students!

We arrived at San Marcos to brisk SW winds despite it being SE on the lake and even on the backside of the mountain.

Colleen launched first and went straight up and was soaring around. She made it look smooth and she headed out to check the air and had no penetration issues so we got everyone ready.

Iain is flying the Element II M, Scott the Element II L and Wayne is on his own Rush III L.

Scott launched first with a nice forward inflation and was off and soaring around before heading to the LZ at Kordich's.

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Iain also had a nice forward launch and was off and flying too for solo #3.

Wayne did a perfect reverse inflation & launch and was headed out to the LZ after getting high with some birds.

From Mexico2015
The winds got calmer rather than stronger so by the time Bev H & Maurice launched it was mostly pure thermals and they were still flying when I arrived at the LZ with the truck.

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Norm & Camilo took off and did the Milk Run back to San Juan Cosala (about 30 kms).

There were no CUs today at San Marcos, but some over the south side of the lake but there were good thermals.

We went in to Jocotepec for lunch on the midway. Street tacos & street pizzas were very good.

We headed back to San Marcos as we though it looked calmer and arrived to perfect conditions. 10-15 kph SW winds, not gusty.

Scott launched first this time again for solo #2 and started ridge soaring to the north wunder my direction and there was nothing so it looked like sled rides all around. I told him to fly out to the LZ and we found him a nice thermal and he was soon above launch (where he stayed for an hour!) when the others launched.

From Mexico2015
Iain had a perfect controlled launch and was out thermalling around as Wayne got ready.

Wayne had the most exciitng launch of the day as his wing went north, he tried to go south and took off in a big wingover grazing the ramp with his butt! Thank God he was on a Rush III that knows how to launch.

Bev H & Maurice had great launches and were off soaring in the glass-off and Colleen followed them off getting high too.

I took my time driving down and arrived just as it got dark to load everyone up to go home, long days ending at 7 pm.

1/10/15
El chante early and then San Marcos looks like the place to fly today

Guadalajara Mexico

Sunny to partly cloudy. High 23C. Winds light and variable.
200° @ 4
-3.2°C (unstable)
3500 metres
Tour Report - El Chante was the call for early flights and we heard pilots flying at Tapalpa as we got ready on El Chante Launch.

Colleen launched first to test the air, followed by Iain for his first solo flight in Mexico. He had a nice bouyant flight with a great approach and landing guided by Colleen.

From Mexico2015
Then Bev H & Maurice flew off and did some soaring before some very exciting landings in the Futball Field.

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We then headed to San Marcos as the SW winds were to come in later.

Colleen drove straight up with the team as I waited in the Kordich LZ to guide the students in.

Iain was launched first and he had a good flight following instructions as Colleen thermalled him above launch before handing him off to me. Landing winds were 10-15 kph from the south so a nice approach and soft touchdown.

Next off was "10 Try Norm" who got high fast, followed by Bev H who got super high too.

Maurice launched last and got some soaring in before heading out for a nice landing at Kordich Airfield.

We went for lunch in Acatlan before heading home to get ready for the Fiesta in Jocotepec.

We had a nice dinner at the Steak House before heading to the midway and rides!

From Mexico2015
Midnight came fast and we were off to bed.



Valle Report - Nicole has all the dirt on the visiting Canucks at Nic's BLOG. Nicole wins as First Women and Alex is Second Sport Class winner. Congrats!

1/9/15
El chante early and then San Marcos looks like the place to fly today

Guadalajara Mexico

Sunny skies this morning. Scattered showers and thunderstorms developing during the afternoon. High 23C. Winds SE at 10 to 15 km/h. Chance of rain 60%.
200° @ 4
-3.2°C (unstable)
3500 metres
Tapalpa Report - we decided to head to Tapalpa instead of waiting for the SW winds at San Marcos because Peddy said it was good there.

We arrived to ODing skies to the north and good cycles and just as we were laying out the first gliders it started to drizzle.

From Mexico2015
Forecast said 40% POP in the late afternoon but it ODed much sooner.

We waited an hour and the rain stopped, so I clipped in Nancy to the tandem and we took off to test the air for the others.

It was a bit turbulent in front of launch as we took a small collapse over the spine that goes to "La Amiga", the hump in front.

We headed out to sunny spine and climbed above launch and we over the Rancho Primavera where the windmill is.

From Mexico2015
Nice light thermal with a decided drift from the SE taking us to the big black OD clouds at the cross to the north.

We flew for 45 minutes and headed out to land to tell the others they could fly, with the exception of Iain who would be on his first solo (too rough for a first flight).

We were setting up over the Piano LZ when we caught a nice climb and we were soon 300 metres over the LZ, where Camilo joined us as he headed out from under the OD clouds too.

In the end; Camilo, Bev H, Maurice and I flew and Norm drove down.

We headed to San Marcos to find winds over the back so off to the fiesta.



Valle Report - Nicole has all the dirt on the visiting Canucks at Nic's BLOG.

Valle Copa Intrepidos Comp Report - Comp Day Three with a 61 km task. Results here. Apparently Al the Hammer had to chuck his Beamer 3 and was rescued by the Military Police!

1/8/15
Tapalpa looks like the place to fly today early

Guadalajara Mexico

Partly cloudy. High 23C. Winds E at 10 to 15 km/h.
140° @ 3
-3.2°C (unstable)
3500 metres
Tapalpa Report - Tapalpa looked like the place to fly according to the IBIS wind forecast models.

When we were driving south on the Libramento we saw huge dust storms on San Marcos Laguna, and Pedro K was at his facility and took some photos.

From Mexico2015
Undaunted, we head south to Tapalpa.

We had some extra passengers today as Nancy & Bruce (Sasquatch Inn owners) dropped in for some tandems as they are wintering in Manzanillo.

We also had new student Iain from Gabriola here for his first day of lessons.

Iain worked on ground handling with Stefan after we did some ground school lessons at launch.

Bev & Maurice launched with Bob and were soaring around out front and after both had some small collapses in the thermals they bailed and headed to the Piano LZ. Bob climbed out and top-landed.

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I drove down to retrieve Bev & Maurice and Iain stayed on top with Stefan.

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By the time I returned, Iain was doing reverse kiting on launch and looking solid!

It was a bit shady, and I decided it would be better to take Iain tandem with more chance of staying up than with Bruce (who weighs 50 lbs more than Iain), so we got ready. Stefan & Bob laid out and launched first.

Stefan & Bob sunk down to the gulleys and worked some lift and were soon climbing out over launch. We launched after waiting for the SW cycles to diminish as it was starting to blow over the back, and went to the same point and found the thermal too. We were circling and climbing out to launch altitude as the shade came in from the clouds forming behind launch.

It took very few minutes before we were losing the lift and we ventured further out to the sunny places to stay up.

Bob & Stefan both top-landed on launch before they got the shade.

Iain was now flying the tandem and we were circling left & right practicing weight shift turns when I saw 10 vultures circling south of us and we headed there to find a scrappy thermal and we climbed several hundred metres there in the shade.

After some time the thermal disappeared and we headed out to the LZ to do the standard approach over the west end of the field.

No wind in the LZ but we had a nice landing on our feet.

Bev & Maurice managed to get off in light cycles and got some soaring in before heading out to land.

From Mexico2015
Bruce & Nancy drove down to get us and we headed to San Marcos with hope as it was sunny there but from Pedro's LZ we could see it was east on launch so we headed home for dinner.



Valle Report - Nicole has all the dirt on the visiting Canucks at Nic's BLOG.

Valle Copa Intrepidos Comp Report - Comp Day Two with a 38.8 km task. Info here. apparently most Canuck pilots made goal. Alex R is in 7th place on his Ozone Alpina 2 in the overall results.



Woodside Report - the FlyBC webcams showed wet snow or rain but it was sunny.

From Mexico2015
1/7/15
Tapalpa looks like the place to fly today early

Guadalajara Mexico

A mix of clouds and sun. High around 25C. Winds ENE at 10 to 15 km/h.
090° @ 8
-3.2°C (unstable)
3700 metres
El Chante Report - Tapalpa looked good to bag a few flights all day long, but I had to be at the airport at 5 pm so we elected to fly El Chante as it involves less driving.

From Mexico2015
Launch is looking very nice as Camilo, Andres & Norm did a mini-work party there in December.

From Mexico2015
The road in is hard on the truck sides as it had grown in, so another work party is needed or we hike in.

It was just Maurice & Bev today as the local boys are shopping for a VW Bug for Norm and they heade to GDL.

Maurice launched first and caught some lift out front before heading to the designated LZ.

From Mexico2015
We are using the futball field in El Chante near the hotel so the pilots can fly home and hike a few blocks to the hotel.

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Bev launched next and scared me a few times as she was apparently trying to get in her harness and letting the glider turn downwind into the gulleys but she made it out to the LZ fine.

From Mexico2015
I was pushing their comfort levels a bit as the LZ appears tight but in laminar 10-15 km winds off the lake, it is easy.

I headed in to the airport after the flights and picked up new student Iain from Gabriola Island who is here to get his P2 rating over the next 10 days.

Later we reconnected with the group and had dinner in Joco and saw the start of the ``Festival of the Guadalupe`` with a parade and native dancers.

From Mexico2015


Valle Report - Nicole has all the dirt on the visiting Canucks at Nic's BLOG.

Valle Copa Intrepidos Comp Report - Comp starts today Info here. apparently 50 pilots made goal.



Woodside Report - I did a hike and fly off Woodside.

From Mexico2015
At 0.5k there is a small tree blown down over the road. Small enough for trucks to drive over. There were also a few little landslides on the way up Woodside highway plus a few downed trees.

Everything was cleaned up. Sunny all day but stable. I landed at Riverside and found a half dozen trees that blew down on the road out of the landing field. No driving down to retrieve pilots until that all gets cleaned out. Chainsaw required.

It is supposed to be sunny tomorrow but not promising wind wise. Who knows. Mother Woodside provides - Martin N.

Claudia hiked Elk today too and flew off.

From Mexico2015
1/6/15
Tapalpa looks like the place to fly today early

Guadalajara Mexico

Mainly cloudy. A few peeks of sunshine possible. High 23C. Winds ENE at 10 to 15 km/h.
090° @ 8
-3.2°C (unstable)
3200 metres
Tapalpa Report - Tapalpa looked NE again so we headed off ater a nice breakfast in Jocotepec.

Strong east winds on the road behind San Marcos but the IBIS forecast looked good so we kept on going.

More sun than yesterday so we we hopeful as we arrived on launch just before noon.

Camilo had booked two tandems and he took off with his first passenger and could soar the launch face but when he went out further to search for thermals it was all sink.

From Mexico2015
His brother Andres took off after Maurice and they were both headed to the LZ rather quickly with some odd thermals out in the valley but mostly an extended sled ride. We lent Andres the Ozone Element II as the old Mistral is not a nice wing to kite, and the Element II clearly has better glide and speed overall too.

Bev H & Normando were ready at the same time and when Bev launched and started going up, Normando hurried off too.

From Mexico2015
Bev was climbing nicely and was soon 100 metres over launch and Normando was having a tough time climbing as fast.

Bev was way too polite as she flew away from the lift to stay out of Normando`s way and she was heading out where she found some nice lift.

From Mexico2015
In the end we had two flight rounds, some great launch conditions, they were haying the Piano LZ so it will be nice for packing tomorrow and we were back in Joco at 430 pm for dinner.

From Mexico2015


Valle Report - Nicole has all the dirt on Mexican PG Competition at Nic's BLOG.

Another cloudy day at Valle and the task is cancelled due to bad launch conditions and no sun and the Day One results are here.

Yay for Alex Raymont in 7th place on his FlyBC supplied Ozone Alpina 2! And Kudos to Denis & Andrew tied at 20th and Nicole not far behind in 23rd. Canucks Rule!

1/5/15
Tapalpa looks like the place to fly today early

Guadalajara Mexico

Generally cloudy. High 21C. Winds ENE at 10 to 15 km/h.
090° @ 8
-3.2°C (unstable)
3200 metres
Tapalpa Report - Tapalpa was as forecast. 10-20 kph east winds all day and all three guests did well.

Maurice & Bev got their wings last night so they had what they were used to flying with today.

Maurice is flying a BDG Wasp and Bev has an Advance Alpha 5.

Maurice took off first and got his wish "to kite and control the wing on launch . . . and decide when to go". And he soared in front for 10-15 minutes while Bev & Andres got ready. Andres is flying his brothers Swing Mistral today.

From Mexico2015
Andres was up next and we were practicing reverse kiting as all his launches so far have been forwards (2).

Andres finally got a good wing and was headed out to the LZ as Maurice was thermalling around south of the LZ, and apparently Maurice needed speedbar to get upwind to the LZ (and just made it). There ae many fields to land in that are acceptable so it really was not a big deal.

It was getting windier on launch and Bev's wing got tangled up and by the time I sorted it out, it was way too strong. I tried kiting her small wing and was getting dragged on launch and I have 50 lbs more weight than Bev.

Local Bob had arrived on launch and took off and was getting plucked pretty high and after many attempts at top-landing on launch finally bailed and landed in the back fields. Yes it was pretty strong, so we drove down to get Maurice & Andres.

Bob thought WindGuru said it would calm down later so we went back up and found a group of Quebecers on launch led by Alex D, and their other instructor David flew off and checked the air on a Rush 2 and had no problems penetrating. So we got everyone ready again.

This time Bev went first with a forward launch. And she had a really nice flight and approach into the LZ.

Andres did another reverse launch and had a nice flight with a weird approach and he got boxed into one corner of the LZ - a teachable moment. But he now has 4 flights, twice as many as when he started today!

Maurice took off again and soaring easily.

I drove down to collect them and we headed home on the Cuota to get dinner.

There is a new eaglet on La Ceja Launch and we got to watch it fight one of the dogs for a sandwich crumb and the eagle won!

From Mexico2015
Click the link below for a video of the eaglet talking to me.

From Mexico2015


Valle Report - Nicole has all the dirt on the visiting Canucks at Nic's BLOG.

A quite cloudy day at Valle like here as the cold front covers most of Mexico, no one makes goal and no results as of this time?

1/4/15
Tapalpa looks like the place to fly today early

Guadalajara Mexico

Some early morning breaks in the overcast, otherwise cloudy. High 24C. Winds E at 10 to 15 km/h.
090° @ 8
-3.2°C (unstable)
3200 metres
Tapalpa Report - Tapalpa was working well for some and perfect for new-comers Bev & Maurice from Victoria.

Bev & Maurice arrived last night at 5 pm at GDL airport on time . . . but their bags & wings did not make it. Good news was that we had spare kits here that fit them and they got to fly twice today in nice conditions to get "back in the saddle" after many monhs of not flying in BC.

We arrived on Tapalpa Launch at noon after a great breakfast in downtown Joco and Colleen flew off to test the air.

From Mexico2015
It was mostly cloudy with 10-15 kph E winds on launch so perfect for kiting & launching.

Bev and then Maurice flew off after Colleen and they got a few turns but mostly it was a sled ride.

We came back up after retrieving everyone and conditions were similar but local hot-shot "Atuk" was on the ridge heading north and looking good.

Stefan & Miguel launched and were going up with some birds to the NE, and I suggested Maurice follow them and he was doing pretty well considering he was on a borrowed XS wing. stefan top-landed on Launch as Colleen was getting ready and Miguel landed in the back field. Not bad for a cloudy day and very smooth.

From Mexico2015
After Bev & Colleen flew off I drove down and Atuk was landing. Apparently he missed the top-landing by 2 metres and was soon on the ground. But he flew for 2:30 and got some +3 m/s lift during the flight.

From Mexico2015


Valle Report - Nicole has all the dirt on the visiting Canucks at Nic's BLOG.

Valle Copa Intrepidos Comp Report - Comp starts today Info here.

1/3/15
San Marcos looks like the place to fly today early

Guadalajara Mexico

Sunshine and a few afternoon clouds. High 24C. Winds SW at 10 to 25 km/h.
210° @ 10
-3.2°C (unstable)
3000 metres
San Marcos Report - San Marcos looked good again for early flights with more SW wind forecasted.

We arrived to perfect cycles, birds soaring and nice puffy CUs.

Colleen launched first and found some good sink but managed to climb out near the gravel pit and then headed out to the flat land thermals and was almost back to launch when the bottom dropped out and she landed at Pedro's LZ. Not rough just not strong enough organized climbs.

From Mexico2015
Norm launched next and got above the top launch fast and was soon at cloudbase 3000+ metres on the north peak as Karen launched for her last flight before heading back to work.

From Mexico2015
Karen was grovelling down low near the gravelpits too but as I drove down she climbed out and headed over the back behind launch.

As we drove back over the mountain towards Jocotepec, Karen reported being behind El Chante launch as she took the Cerro Viejo route east bur when we saw her she was in the lee of the Joco Hill trying to climb out but she got shaded out. She found a nice alfalfa field near the highway to pack up in.

From Mexico2015
At this point Norm reported in at 3000 metres over El Chante on his way to San Juan Cosala (the Milk Run).

I dropped Karen off to pack and headed to the airport for the first set of tour guests, who arrived on time sans baggage due to an airline mixup. Good news is we have spare wings here until their stuff arrives.



Valle Report - Nicole has all the dirt on the visiting Canucks at Nic's BLOG.

1/2/15
San Marcos looks like the place to fly today early

Guadalajara Mexico

Sunshine and a few afternoon clouds. High 24C. Winds SW at 15 to 25 km/h.
210° @ 20
-3.2°C (unstable)
3200 metres
San Marcos Report - San Marcos looked good to bag a flight before noon as it looked strong for PGs.

I launched at 1145 am and headed north to top up before heading south.

From Mexico2015
There was a lot of shade south of launch as a big CU was forming off the dry lake bed near San Marcos town. I headed through the shade south and caught some lift but had to head straight south as I had little forward speed and circling would waste time.

I crossed the saddle gap at the height of the powerlines, meaning if I find no lift I can't cross over the back meaning a long retrieve.

From Mexico2015
Undaunted, I head south and catch some light lift at the south end of the gap and work that lift until I get over the ridge and head south some more.

As Norm says "head south to the Magic Hill".

From Mexico2015
As I get further south the wind is definitely picking up and Norm is in the air but not Karen as she is "downloading GoPro footage to her computer".

Norm was climbing north of launch as I got to 3150 metres near the Magic Hill but there was no point in going any further south as all the lift was being pushed back towards Lake Chapala anyway.

From Mexico2015
I crossed over at the venturi near the Magic Hill and was getting -4.6 m/s down all the way to Jocotepec but there were CUs over town so keep on going but oddly I was only going 31 kms on the GPS.

I caught a good climb right near the Joco antennas and was back at above the ridgeline heading east to El Chante Launch and it was very lifty along the ridge east.

From Mexico2015
But it was also windy with some 7-8 km/hr groundspeeds and rolling waves on the Lake. I pushed out towards the lake and there were Cus forming over the lake with one that looked like it had a waterspout forming . . . yikes!

I took a long time to descend to the beach near the Balnerio and it was smooth as the air is very laminar near the water.

From Mexico2015
I hovered in with little forward speed right to touchdown, as did Norm about 15 minutes later.

From Mexico2015
We could have easily made Ajijic & the 5 Star Hotel LZ but the winds looked like they were picking up so I played it safe.

GPS track said 35 kms, a good Milk Run Flight home to San Juan Cosala.

From Mexico2015
Karen finally launched but ended up "dirting it" a few kms from Kordich Airsports.



Valle Report - Nicole has all the dirt at her blog.

her flight.

1/1/15
El Chante & San Marcos looks like the place to fly today

Guadalajara Mexico

Sunshine and clouds mixed. High 79F. Winds SSW at 5 to 10 mph.
250° @ 6
-3.0°C (unstable)
3200 metres
San Marcos Report - San Marcos looked good to bag a few flights to celebrate New Years, but first Colleen & I had to head in to GDL to buy a bike for her to ride around. We found one using Anumex.com and we managed to get a brand new Specialized Rockhopper for $400 CDN that is a small womens frame.

Camilo, Karen & Poncho flew El Chante while we were bike shopping and had a sledder while Norm & Andres drove down.

Colleen & I arrived at San Marcos Launch around 4 pm to see Pedro & Mile flying their HGs in nice ridge lift.

From Mexico2015
Colleen got set up and had a nice 45 minute flight landing at the back fields to save the retrieve.

From Mexico2015




12/31/14
Tapalpa looks like the place to fly today again with a later flight at San Marcos

Guadalajara Mexico

Sunshine. High 27C. Winds light and variable.
090° @ 6
-3.0°C (unstable)
3200 metres
Tapalpa Report - Tapalpa looked good to bag a few flights before heading to New Years Parties! But the inversion layer kept us pretty low at times.

From Mexico2015
Camilo had 2 tandems to complete to I offered my services to help him as we hoped it would get better later for San Marcos.

I took Santiago tandem first after Andres flew off for his second solo flight ever, checking the air for us.

Santiago and I flew for 15 minutes waiting for camilo to fly off with Jessica and we thermalled around together for another 15 minutes getting back to launch altitude but no higher. Colleen also flew off getting her first flight in many months.

From Mexico20142015
We headed back up in the new Suburban (which is running perfectly) and saw Norm heading north as Karen launched.

Norm flew to Zacoalco to meet us for lunch and Karen went AWOL or some time before finally landing on the San Marcos side at the south end of the lake.

We took so long finding Karen that we were denied a San Marcos flight as it was getting late and we had to go party for New Years.



Woodside Report - we were hanging out at Tapalpa when I looked at the FlyBC Webcams and it looked gorgeous at Woodside and Agassiz was reporting 5 kms SW wind. Perfect! I figured someone would be out.

From Mexico2015
"A beautiful day at woodside. Martin, Mike and I flew early getting 20 plus minutes. Andre picked us up, these next flights we were able to get up to 50 mins. Not Mexico, but not bad for Dec 31st. Happy New Year" - Cheers, Derek

From Mexico2015




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