04 June 2007
2007 Canadian Hang Gliding Championship
After work playtime on my UP Targa2
12,499ft in the Okanagan
No amount of water to one area of my life will quench my thirst in another.
I recently moved to Calgary to work as a R&D engineer for an alternative energy industry company. But this does not mean that I have lost interest in flying, in fact I have been flying my hangglider and paraglider 2 to 3 times a week at Cochrane since February. And I will be flying the big air of Golden on the weekends once the snow level drops a little more.
The flying scene here is really nice and I have a good group of friends here.
After only 4 months at my new job, my boss gave me time off to fly in the Nationals, which is really impressive.
After working hard all week it was a relief to show up in the Okanagan -British Columbia's wine country- for a practice day in epic Lumby conditions- a 13,000ft base, strong 3-5m/s climbs, crisp spring air and a blue sky dotted with puffy cumuli. I explored many of the valleys in the area and landed in the calm, golden air of the evening.
A good day in the air.
But that was the last of the good weather as the entire West coast was blanketed in wind and rain; there was even flooding in areas. After day upon day of rain, we were beginning to run out of things to do, just as a break in the weather came in time for one task on the last day of the comp. A 70km task in moist unstable conditions with lots of shade took me 2.5 hours to finish. The next closest group of pilots -including '05 British Champion Richard Lovelace- flew about 15km of the task after getting flushed in a particularly shaded-in gulley.
We didn't fly much that week but we had the chance to spend lots of time with friends, so it wasn't that bad. It was awesome to have Richard and Caroline here, who flew over from the UK just for this comp, and I really hope that they come back next year!
Of course I was super happy to win the Nats for a 7th year in a row, especially since my Dad was visting from Malaysia and was there to see it. I was also excited about my new wing... the Litespeed RS4 Carbon Smoke. I was expecting a flat glide but was surprised how well I could climb in the light stuff, without getting tired either.
Baby got climb!
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