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Cross Country

Cross Country November 2020

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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.
free flight family

This issue I was again reminded about one of my favourite things about what we all do – the people in it. How different they can be, but how we always coalesce around this shared love of the air and flying. For most of us I guess, flying is a constant. We might do more or less one year to the next, but it’s always there, we’ll always be pilots. It takes a certain type of individual to even think about letting their feet rise off the ground and be carried into the air, and another again to actually do it. It’s a tiny minority of the population, and while some may consider what we do as extreme, the people I meet in the sport are very rarely that. Instead they…

1 min.

Jorge Atramiz is a photographer who has been documenting the sport he loves for 20 years, since he started flying in 1999. Born in Venezuela, now a resident of Hawaii he’s a specialist, taking time to create, capture and form the story he wants to tell. His latest brilliant photo essay, Trust, starts on p50 Dan Burton (right) is a wildlife cameraman who has travelled the world both above and below sea level, whether it’s filming Beluga whales under the ice or planning a paramotor migration through Africa. His latest trip to Scotland with James Borges kept him (relatively) close to home – see p58 Mathilde Chivet describes herself as “truly a biologist, deeply interested in life sciences.” Outside her lab in Grenoble she loves hiking, climbing and of course paragliding. This…

5 min.
xcontest winners 2020

The XContest year finished on 1 October. More than 16,000 pilots log flights in the international online XC league, which runs from 1 Oct to 30 Sept, and while pilots can enter all their flights, only the top six count for ranking. With the Alps in lockdown over spring that meant pilots who went big in Brazil in October/November 2019 had the advantage. Here are this year’s XContest winners. OVERALL 16,132 pilots Guy Anderson (GB), Ozone Enzo 3, 2,778 points “I’m very happy but at the same time a bit surprised to finish at the top,” said Britain’s Guy Anderson who won the year with six big flights in Brazil: 424.67, 431.13, 459.87, 461.64, 465.11 and 535.6 km. The last one set a world record for flight to declared goal, shared with…

4 min.
the naked pilot richi mantilla

I grew up in Bucaramanga, Colombia where we taught ourselves to fly paragliders in 1994. The first foreign pilots only arrived here two years earlier. There were no instructors or schools. I remember my first flight where my friend said: “Just run and when you’re down there, put your hands down!” A year later an instructor from Venezuela arrived, Leopoldo Turko. He offered a course and we learned how to fly properly. We were flying almost every day in those days. There were no local brands of paragliders. We flew Airwave, Bruce Goldsmith’s former company. That’s how I got in contact with him. Now I am a BGD dealer in Colombia. In 1998 I was living in the US. I got my USHPA tandem licence and later my instructor’s licence. There were…

4 min.
insider’s guide: annecy h&f

We know Annecy as the spring and summer hotspot for new XC pilots, SIV and tandems, but there is a quieter side to this area that only a few get to know. Come autumn, as the leaves turn, a hardy band of pilots hike into the hills to explore the area for its hike-and-fly potential. We talked to Bruno Bourdat, director of the Office de Tourisme des Sources du lac d’Annecy, to get the lowdown. The basics The playground around Lake Annecy is hike-and-fly heaven, with lots of grassy launches to be found on the ridges and mountains that surround the lake. You’ll find launches for every wind direction, it’s just up to you to choose a hike to match your energy level and time constraints. Whichever you choose, the views will…

3 min.
goodbye andrew

It is with immeasurable grief that the South African flying community contemplate the untimely death of Andrew Smith. An accident when flying the Garden Route in South Africa left him with life-threatening injuries which he succumbed to on Friday 25 September 2020. Over almost four decades of his flying career, Andrew touched the lives of many pilots. He was a committed pilot possessed of fierce and relentless intensity, with an unwavering love of flight for his entire adult life. Andrew was a pioneer in every way, from being the first to break the 100km barrier, to becoming the only pilot to win a PWC on a serial class wing against open class wings, in 2000. Those of us who knew him well revelled in his profound intellect and marvelled at the diversity of…