Our Blog is an up to date record of what we have been up to both in the school and out of it. We endeavour to update it as regularly as possible and include a sample the days pictures when available.

You can scroll back through the
Blog and follow various students progress through their training and get a good idea of how the school operates.

You will also find records of our trips abroad which will give you a good idea of what to expect should you wish to come on one with us.

Please visit it on a regular basis and feel free to add comments.

Sunday, October 30, 2011

Algodonales 2011 Day 11 Ups and downs and in betweens

 Setting up at Lijar main launch
 Thats the way to do it, nice one Barry 
 Nigel follows suit with a classic launch
 Chrissy climbs up
 ... and away
 Bill claims Ronda for Kernow
 Chris hot and sweaty after his training run
Cloud 9 with the JJ team

It was back up the main hill where hopefully the thermic wind would overcome the light ENE forecast.  Sure enough on arrival it had and with some staying up already the group kitted up for what looked like it would be a cracking day.

Chris H was first off kind of by accident as it turned out but made a fine take off but missed what lift there was and was soon heading out.  The rest picked their moments as the hill began to fill with some staying up and some going down.  Bill Chrissy and Mike all had a good go at it with Chrissy coming out on top and having a ball.  Michel held back waiting for better things and Gary reconfirmed that too much brake does not help at launch .......

By the time we had driven down and back up things had changed with the wind coming pretty much over the back, the dust devils kicking in and still some trying to take off!

We looked at our options and decided on a trip to Ronda where we found it nicely soarable on arrival. Michel myself and Bill wasted no time in getting in the air and found nice bouyant conditions with some super smooth thermals if you were lucky :).  However by the time the rest were ready some cloud moved in covering the sun and the lift died resulting in Michel on top Bill at the bottom and me in a bush in between!

Mike and Gary both made valiant attempts and managed short soaring flights before landing at the bottom of the slope and finally Bill and myself flew down to the road to check out the options for future visits.

Anothet long day but some good flying  and everyone getting some airtime, can't be bad

Quote of the day "Hey Phippsy do you want me to rub some cream on it" 

Saturday, October 29, 2011

Algodonales 2011 Day 10 Castles and Thermals

 Gary gets set to go ... where though ??
 The guys and gals join the flock
 Nigel W gets away when it is breezy enough
 Tandem Passenger plays catch the shoe
 ..and wins!
 Bill sets up the camera for the group photo
 ...and does a fine job
 Mike practices his Brake dancing
Classic evening magic
Another bright and sunny day with a NE forecast saw us return to the big M where it was spot on  and pretty much flyable from the time we arrived.  Whilst some of the guys lingered a little some cracked out their kit and as ususaly Michel was up and away first. As more pilots arrived it set up to be a busy day so organisation was the key. The wind filled alittle until despite the forecast it bacame breezy enough and a little too challenging at launch for some of the group. 

Gary joined the bush munchers club and permitted us to use our well honed skills from yesterday to extract him.  I took the opportunity to  get a flight inand check the conditions as things seemed to moderate a little and had a fun time flying with Michel Nigel Bill and Chrissy in nice thermic conditions allowing us to fly the whole ridge and out to the castle on the hill and back, great fun.

With things easing off it ws back to earth to get the rest off and what a fine time they had flying right intot the evening in the calssic lift as the thermals finally died away.  Everyone did good landings despite the nil wind conditions at the bottom.

It was a late night back followed by Kaz and myself dressing up as Witches, you dont wanrt to ask........

Tomorrow looks like a Lijar day but we shall see.

Quote of the day "nice meatballs"

Friday, October 28, 2011

Algodonales 2011 Day 9 Montellano Magic and Munching

A light N breeze forecast saw pilots spread out over various sites, we opted for Montellano and had it spot on the nail with conditions getting better and better as the day went on.

A quick site briefing from the bottom for those that had not been there before then it was off to the top to get going.  Conditions were light but everybody took the opportunity to get a settling in flight down and sort out their forward launch and light wind landing techniques.  A swift turn around saw us back at the top as things improved a little.  The guys launched again with most making a second extended top to bottom whils Michel climbed away to cloudbase to complain of the cold!

Bill made an unexpected landing  during a momentary larpe of concentration as he waved to Michel and eneded up in a large bush or small tree depending on your view!  Whilst the others played myself Mike and Michel helped Bill out and amazing his glider and lines survived in fine shape so we left hin to sort out the tangles aided by Chrissy.

 Gary gets rigging on Montellano
 The guys check out what needs checking out at launch
 The lift starts to work, wheres Bill gone..........
 Classic sky, clasic lift , classic day 
 Mike set to go and looking up for it
The evening lift mellows and the sky fills with wings

Conditions were really kicking in now and everybody got into the air to enjoy them, even Bill having sorted his wing got back up there and could be heard all over Andalucia announcing his return to the air.

As the sun lowered the evening lift kicked in and the guys flew until they had had their fill, whilst some mixed it with the masses Mike sneaked off to one end nad had a great time exploring lift and his glider before coming back to the landing zone.

Nice to see everyone in the same filed at the end of the day and everyone smiling, great day and a typical Montellano one,  more of the same tomorrow ??

Hey Mark, Andy, Simon and Graham who is Peter le Clark ?? as pronouced by a frenchman......

Quote of the day "I think my bush is bigger and more prickly than J's"

Thursday, October 27, 2011

Algodonales 2011 Day 8 Ch ch ch changes

Changeover day is always a strange one but this one was easier than usual as it was raining so putting flying out of the picture.  The guys who were leaving us packed their kit then spent the rest of the morning trying to loose all of Simons photos, fortunately they failed.

We headed off to the airport late afternoon with the celebrity name game still going strong all the way.  Sorry to see the guys go after a good week which saw all of them have some super flying and making the most of their time with us. Be good to see you again guys, thanks for behaving and thanks for coming.

The usual problem of finding my way to arrivals eneded when I managed to shout to the newcomers to come up to departures where I picked them up. Heading back to Algo' the skies looked pretty dark and on our arrival it wa plain to see that it had rained very hard indeed.  Nigel W, gary V, Chris H and Michel K all joined the two weekers in JJ's to form the team for the coming week.

Lets hop it starts off with a good day tomorrow

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

Algodonales 2011 Day 7 Early Birds

 Simon rigs the kit
 Bill complete with landing field windsock gets set
 Andy concentrates on his launch
 Mike floats up and away
 Oldest Swinger in Town (and Mark)
An Ant with attitude

The forecast was increasing winds and it to be blown out by mid day so we made an early start and were up Lijar by 9.30. The guys cracked on and in nice smooth conditions Bill led the way off the SW launch and showed that even at that time of the day there was some lift around.  Everyone enjoyed a fun fligyht down with some finding bits of lift as they flew out and around the gulley.

A swift turn around soon saw them all back at launch and with the weather holding off time for another go.  This time the lift had kicked in and the advice was not to get too high and keep an eye out for increasing wind then to get down.  Everyone got away cleanly with no vistors to Jackies bush..  Mike soon found himself going up alittle more than he wished to and employed Big Ears and speedbar which after a sustained effort saw him finally descending.

One by one everyone landed as the wind picked up with everyone in the main field except Mike who made his first mini XC mainly backwards.

Back to the house for lunch and by 14.00hrs it was blowing .  The afternoon was filled with a visit ti Zahara, the obligatory vist up the castle and playing with the exploding seed pods which gsve Andy and myself a full facial.

Evening meal in the posh restaraunt, a bit of a wild night in JJ's where Bill high on 1.5 litres of Agua kept the whole bar entertained with his antics.  It was abit late back but with tomorrows forecast we were not too worried.

Algodonales 2011 Day 6 Two Seasons in One Day

 The guys have the sky to themselves as we get going at Ronda
 Barry flies by the windsock
 Bills bush,nice but not quite as nice as Jackies
 Mark floats past launch at Ronda
 Hill 47, well actually Teba, spot the condom
 Team photo under the flag
 Mark ready to go back at Lijar west
 Mike enjoys the evening lift
Andy gets down as dusk closes in

Spoilt for choice the hardest decision was which site out of four to go to. We opted for Ronda la V whilst others headed to El Bosque, Lijar and Teba so spreading everyone out.

With the wind smack on the guys wasted no time in getting set up with Bill leading the way closely followed by Graham.  With the wind and thermals picking up the local school moved on leaving plenty of space for all.  Soon the sky was full of Cloud 9's pilots having fun in chllenging enough conditions.  Mike gave it a miss being a bit lighter on his wing which proved a wise move as the wind picked up.

Mark and Andy had a ball honing their ridge soaring skills and Mark "popped" in his first top landing after having survived a heavy sink cycle which saw a few slope landing. There was even a little mine clearance going on a rare sight indeed.

By early afternoon things were getting top end and with the thermals banging through and an overcast sky to the west we decided to make a move and have a look at Teba. On arrival the wind was smack on but strong so we did a site brief counted the condoms and flew the flag. The wind eased and promptly backed to the west so it was back in the cars for a long shot visit to Lijar west on a wing and a prayer.

Just under an hour later the guys were rigging on launch with conditions having just got flyable as we arrived, aren't we thelucky ones. Wasting no time the guys all launched to enjoy some cracking evening flying both with each other and the Vultures in super lift. Mark demonstrated the reverse reverse take off method, eat your heart out Michel.  As the sun set Mikes sink rate kicked in seeing him well up there and wondering how to get down.  By the time I drove down some of the guys had landed, some in Pauls cafe field and some in the Notice board field, although Andy determined to make the most of it was still a speck in the sky.  Finally Kaz called him down as the light faded rounding off a cracking day flying wise for all.

Quote of the day "yes I know which way to turn"

The guys went out to celebrate and we have not seen them since.......................

Monday, October 24, 2011

Algodonales 2011 Day 5 R&R&Ronda

The forecast was pretty much spot on with a wet and windy start to the day so we had a chilled time recovering from yesterdays exploits and travelling. The guys fiddled with kit, emptied sand out of gliders inspected friction burnt lines and generally amused themselves in all sorts of ways.

By early afternoon things startd to brighten up a little and as the front passed the wind veered so we decided to have look at Ronda V on the off chance.  Whilst kaz's car went straight there Phippsy's car took the scenic route due to too much thought going into conjouring up Muffin the Mule, you kind of needed to be there.

Not suprisingly it was windy at Ronda and whilst the Vultures were having a ball playing with the lift and cloud suck flying Paragliders did not look like a wise move.  We sat it out until 19.00 when to be fair it did moderate but we decided to give the small slot a miss and head back so Andy and myself could head off to get some replacement lines made up to replace his damaged ones.

A quiet day and just what we needed to recharge ready for a better forecast tomorrow......hopefully!

Quote of the day "its like a mine field"  if you have been to Ronda V you will know what they mean !

Sunday, October 23, 2011

Algodonales 2011 Day 4 A Day at the Seaside Paragliding

 The sight that greeted us on arrival, guess its flyable then
 Simon sets off to join the fun
 Andy gives it his best shot and gets close
 15 Km of dune stretch off into the distance
 The two weekers take it easy
Andy (I think) searches for a headset (I think)

With a breezy SW wind forecast in Algo we opted to head north west to the Coast for sun Sun, swimming and hopefully Soaring. It's a fair old drive so we occupied ourselves in Car 1 playing highly interlectural games revolving around famous peoples names and how "hot" they were  if they were female including Susan Boyle courtesy of Mark.  Car 2 dealt with the time in a different manner which in fairness was probably more beneficial to them in the long term!

Up to Seville then hang a left then left again and we finally arrived to bright sunshine a brisk SW wind and plenty of Paragliders in the air. It was a bit on the brisk side but Graham K and Simon M wasted no time in getting in the air from the shear edge launch.  They worked their way along the low cliffs then edged onto the high dunes and headed west along a 15 k ridge run. 

Andy and Mark gave it their best shots but with limited experience on Paragliders and no experience of such conditions settled for some ground handling practice on the beach.  Having worked up a sweat they joined Kaz for a swim in what was deemed to be a very acceptably warm sea.

I took the opportunity to have a fly and launched from the beach skimming along at 1' above the sane before lifting up and heading off. Following the track of Graham and Simon who had now returned I could appreciate to scale of the site and the fine line that you had to fly in such conditions, great fun.  having seen some pilots blown back and others walking back up from the beach many kilometers from launch and civilization you need to keep your wits about you to avoid to much exercise....

With everybody safe and sound we headed home via the senic route through the waste lands that did a good impression of a North African desert  for a late meal at JJ's some good laughs and a solid nights sleep after a pretty full day.

 Quote of the day "You woudn't, would you ??"

Tomorrow looks like a rest day, not a bad idea after a day like this one.

Saturday, October 22, 2011

Algo day 3 Rain in Spain ??

 Bill Rush's to rig as the thermals kick in
 Mark heads out to play
 Mike does what Mike does 
 Chrissy and Bill celebrate a good flight and the Rush 3 :) 

That is what was forecast with only a brief flyable slot possibly in the morning.  You guessed it we were up there and ready at 11.00am. Conditions were breezy, overcast and even a touch of dampness, still we remained positive. Possibly alittle too positive as lightning began to flash around us!  11.30 saw us head back down to sort out the new lodgings and have a spot of lunch before heading of to do some sighseeing.

However by the time we were sorted things looked brighter and the winds lighter, hmmmmm lets head up and have a look.  On arrival it was very light and still quite bright so the guys wasted no time in getting set up.  Once again Bill led the way and after a very sinky spell dissapeared around to the east Graham K followed then Chrissy and one by one the rest some went down some went up and Bill and Chris took the honours with some super flying which encouraged half ofAlgo to head up the hill! Simon took the opportunity to stroke Jackies bush as opposed to going fully into it, lucky he trimmed it yesterday.

 Kaz and myself headed down to pick up the troops and by the time we returned to take off there were plenty of gliders in the air.  Everyone had a second flight with Barry h taking the honours this time as he soared up in the thermals having to pull Big ears to get away and down and then having the added bonus of out flying myself as we worked some low level stuff above the landing field.  BIG thanks to Chrissy and Bill for driving the cars down so allowing Kaz and myself to fly.

An unxpecte end to a day which we had pretty much written off, lets hope tomorrows forecast is just as wrong!!!

Quote of the day " why go up when you can go down" .................

Algo 2011 Day two Thermals and Turmoils

 The guys and gals at the top waiting to play
 Phippsy fires the Catapult as Kaz tries to impress Mark
 Bill starts the day off
 Bill heads out in bouyant but bouncy air 
Happy bunnies after some cracking flying by the tree

Well what a day it turned out to be.  With the guys still settling into Algo life we managed breakfast even if boiled eggs were off the menu due to cooker inoperatives.  With everyone on board we headed up Lijar based on a forecast of brisk winds due to ease back as the days went on.

Sure enough it was breezy on top so Parawaiting ensued, bit like in the UK except that it was warm and sunny!  The Catapult came out showing a new star in Mark W who with the advantage of longer legs not only had the power had the accuracy to go with them. Simon wanted to see Jackies bush, which attracted quite a lot of interest , not surprisingly, and having grown since last year deserved a little trimming.

By 17.00 things were looking a bit better although still breezy enough and a bit gusty.  However Bill decided to give it a shot and proved both his capability and that it was still rough enough as he popped up and down on his flight.  Finally he arrived in the landing field in challenging conditions and made a fine job of it.

No sooner had he landed than the wind further eased and the rest of the guys rigged up. One by one they took off into ever improving conditions and one by one they went up.  Soon the sky was full of wings having fun with the team mixed in amongst them.  Everyone had a fine time with the old hands and the newbies enjoying the abundant lift.  Mark and Andy both relatively new to Paraglidining although both experienced Paramotor pilots got to grips with free flight and were soon thermalling up and away.

Graham and Chris both more experienced made light work of it to enjoy some super flying.  Barry H was first to join Bill  having managed to avoid the lift but still had a fun time. Mike C had a ball getting his first thermalling experience seeing him hundreds of feet above take off and thousands of feet above the ground before rounding it all off with a first class landing.

Even Kaz got to join in the fun as we found a spare driver for her vehicle and looked pretty pleased about it.

By the time I arrived in the landing field some of the guys were coming in whilst others were still up there playing and one had top landed ( inadvertently).  With everyone safetly sorted it was a happy band that opted for JJ's with tales of daring do and some just do.

 Quote of the day " it's better than sex"  it was not me that said that Kaz,honest.

Another day tomorrow with a forecast that may make it a challenge, but we like challenges....