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Cross Country

Cross Country April 2020

Cross Country is the world’s leading voice for hang gliding, paragliding and paramotoring pilots. Ten times a year, our magazine content reflects our obsession with flying, and we express it by packing each issue with the most imaginative, inspirational photography and writing we can lay our hands on.

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United Kingdom
XC Media
10 Issues

in this issue

2 min
finding the way

The GPS couldn’t connect. The fog was down, it was cold, dark, wet and we seemed to be no closer to our destination. Things were serious. Here we were, with the world’s best adventure-racing pilot Chrigel Maurer in tow, and we couldn’t find our way to the pub. We had the fun and privilege of hosting Chrigel for three days in the UK in January, on a whistle-stop speaking tour. His first time in the UK we’d been hoping to show off the best of the country under a cold blue sky. Unfortunately the fog rolled in from the east, bringing drizzle and damp. Chrigel didn’t mind, instead asking questions about the weather, wind and spring and summer flatland flying in the south of England. Later, at his talks, he impressed the…

1 min

Sara Weaver is a hang glider pilot, “climber, runner and writer” based in Colorado. She started flying seven years ago aged 19, and has been addicted ever since. A fan of Sports class comps, this issue she takes us on a trip down Mexico way, to the El Peñòn Classic, p60. instagram.com/sweaverflies Nik Hawks lives in San Diego where he helps run Paleo Treats (“Dessert masterpieces”), tackling Big Sugar one keto snack at a time. In between brownie tastings his thoughts are in the air. In his first article for Cross Country he looks at intermediate syndrome and how to tackle it. See p44 “FLYING BETWEEN FITZROY AND CERRO TORRE AT SUNRISE WAS A MAGICAL MOMENT”In Patagonia, p32 Théo de Blic is a regular contributor, but this issue he’s gone on a deep…

2 min
in the core

New Zealand triangle Louis Tapper set a New Zealand record two days ahead of Christmas, with a 197km FAI triangle on 23 December. Launching from Treble Cone on his Ozone Enzo 3 he was in the air for eight hours, touching 3,000m later in the day. “It was an early Christmas present for me!” he said. “Will save the 200km for another day, started a bit late.” Christmas in Australia Good to see that Rick Brezina, who hit the top of the viral video charts last year when he was sucked up into a dust devil from launch at Manilla, was back in Australia for his Christmas holidays. He topped the XContest chart on Christmas Day with a 118km FAI triangle from Mystic, Bright. Dalby by tow Shane Gingell flew 380km in Australia on 13…

3 min
rollover beethoven

Maestro Mike Küng rolled out of bed and into the record books on the morning of Tuesday 21 January when he executed a rollover from a hot air balloon at 7,100m ASL above Lake Achensee, Austria. The world-record stunt saw Mike and his balloon crew, including alpine balloon pilot Andy Nairz, lift off from the freezing car park in the ski resort of Christlum in Achenkirch before climbing to above 7,000m. The temperature up there was minus 25C. “Conditions were fantastic, we had cloudless skies,” Mike said afterwards. “The day was perfect. We were really lucky to have this day and the team.” Launching the balloon from 900m the flight to 7,100m took about 45 minutes. “The balloon pilot is a friend of mine. We were talking about height, and he said he…

2 min
brits go climate friendly for comps

Britain’s Competitions Panel decided to carbon offset travel for the entire British Winter Open in Roldanillo, Colombia in January. Some 130 pilots had their travel to the competition and during the week offset at a cost of about £1,200 (€1,450, $1,575). The competition covered all the costs of carbon offsetting. It’s the second year running that the UK has held a mid-winter competition in Roldanillo, which is 8,600km from the UK, and the idea of trying to mitigate some of the travel-related emissions was greeted positively by both organisers and pilots. Chris Bevins was one of the pilots who lobbied to make it happen. “I have to fly for work so I looked into carbon offsetting a few years ago,” he said. “I wanted my small company to be carbon neutral. “So when…

1 min
who won the wing? prize draw 2020

Eric Perez Salva from Spain was the lucky winner of the Cross Country Prize Draw 2020. He won a paraglider of his choice from any one of seven brands, including Advance, Gin, Icaro Paragliders, Independence Paragliding, Nova, Ozone and Skyman. Eric lives in the Pyrenees and currently flies a low EN-B hike-and-fly wing. He has been flying for three years and is looking to upgrade his glider. After careful deliberation around the different lightweight high EN-B wings he went for the Advance Xi. “I’m really excited,” he said. “Can’t wait to open the parcel. It will be the first time I fly a brand new wing!” Other winners included: A Supair Altirando Lite harness, won by Stephen Buckingham, USA; a Naviter Hyper, won by Bill Brand, UK; a Plusmax helmet, won by…