Active Edge

BHPA Registered School

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A typical flight on the first day

Archive for August, 2012

The ups and downs of hike & fly

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Arrived in Castejon de sos (well-known paragliding site) smiling and happy as we knew there would be pilots here who could give us accurate forecasts for the coming days. Unfortunately, a local paragliding school with access to the weather info has dashed our hopes by telling us that the strong northerly winds will continue for at least the next 4 days! This will mean there is no hope of flying and we are so weary of walking. We are trying to come to terms with this reality in one of the local bars, having so far consumed 2 strong coffees and 7 cakes each. We are consulting our maps for our next move.

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A luxury refuge

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Last night we were in a cave, tonight a refuge with benches tables and best of all a fire. We are also very well positioned to hopefully make best use of the good weather forecast for tomorrow. We are just west of Castejon, a mecca of Spanish paragliding. We still have over 1000m to climb up to launch though!

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Our Cave

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Last night we slept in a cave. Timing was perfect as it just started to storm as we got there. Our evenings entertainment was a light show illuminating the gorge we were in, amazing! Just had two slices of bread and water for breakfast. Headed east on foot.

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Shower time

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Just had a much needed shower in this wonderful, if rather cold plunge pool. No aches and pains from a long days walking now :)

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Last night

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This was our shelter for last night. Bit dusty but otherwise warm and dry.

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Caught in a storm

Set off from Aso de sobore Monte this morning stopping at Biescas for breakfast, provisions and a chat with local paragliding pilot, miguel. The headed up valley to east, climbing up towards Monte navariecho. On route the temps were about 30 deg +, drank loads at any fountain we passed. Got to col at 2100m and within 15 mins we were sheltering in the trailstar under a raging thunderstorm; lightning, hail and flash floods. After this passed we decided to wait as our plan was only to get to the refuge tonight. Our patience paid off as we were able to fly right to the refuge. Our plan is to climb mondiciero (2295m) as our start point if the forecast is correct – light southerlies.

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Great shelter

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Last night we made a good decision to fly down from the mountain and sleep in an event venue. There was the most unbelievable storm at about 0400, complete with violent gust front. Up early to head to Biescas, hoping to fly.

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A difficult day

We met back up this morning after Dean had climbed up from Canfranc. We then ascended to try and fly but too windy from east. Decided to head for Biescas, but got caught on two descent paths that were a nightmare. These made us late to fly down to the town, instead landing short in a one horse town ( without a horse). We couldn’t get any food where we landed and a 6 km hike at 2200 is not appealing. So I’ve had no proper food for 2 days and have just eaten one of my powder emergency rations. Hoping for a big breakfast in the morning, followed by an even bigger flight.

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Pilot’s Reunited

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We are both back together again. We climbed above the refuge I stayed at only to find the wind too strong from the east. We then had to down climb the ridge in the photo – we have now idea how we managed it with the packs on our backs. We are now headed towards Biescas, to hopefully put us in a good start point to fly tomorrow. Just topped up water and washed clothes in mountain spring.

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