Will and Mayang's Travels - Paragliding, April 2006


We decided to go paragliding.  We went with the worryingly named "Icarus Wings" flying club near Portsmouth.  Basically you are pulled up to 1000 feet by a rope (higher than the UK's tallest building, Canary Wharf tower, but not as high as the world's tallest building, Taipei 101).  Then the rope detaches and you glide back to earth.
Will and Mayang go paragliding
First it's Mayang's turn to get strapped into the harness.

Will and Mayang go paragliding
Ready to go, with a big grin.  The fully trained parachute pilot is strapped in as well, he does the "driving".

Will and Mayang go paragliding
The cable tightens and the parachute begins to inflate.

Will and Mayang go paragliding
The point at which Mayang started flying!

Will and Mayang go paragliding
They're off, the pilot grabs you with his legs to stop each person bumping into each other if there's a strong wind.

Will and Mayang go paragliding
They disappear up towards the clouds.

Will and Mayang go paragliding
They continue riding until they are just dots in the sky.  But, the people on the ground can still  hear Mayang screaming, laughing and shouting!

Will and Mayang go paragliding
Within a couple of minutes they are back down to earth, and the landing is assisted by two ground crew.  You come in to land fast, so it's hard to keep your legs straight.

Will and Mayang go paragliding
Afterwards, Mayang can't stop laughing!

Will and Mayang go paragliding
Next it's Will's turn.

Will and Mayang go paragliding
Ready to go...

Will and Mayang go paragliding
Will took a camera up to take a shot from the air.  We are all actually on an army base, although the runways are no longer used.  Just to make sure no aircraft try to land, we park our cars as a warning across the runway.  We are trying to land back on the red dot on the ground.

Will and Mayang go paragliding
Will returns safely to earth.


All pictures and other media are Copyright ©2004 William Owen Smith and Mayang Adnin.