XC Media

Cross Country

Cross Country 155 September - October 2014

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

In the hills behind us thunder pealed and lightning flashed. In front, a perfect breeze flowed up the slope. A young tandem pilot was darting onto the mat and then off again, his face a rabbit-in-the-headlights picture. Should he go or should he stay? Tandem pilots are paid on results, after all, and they must eat. “I can’t believe we’re even discussing it” I said, looking around in mild desperation for support. Marcus was on my side I knew, but I thought perhaps Pat was on a mission to fly. The key lay in convincing Chrigel. As you can read later, we were in Switzerland to experience Chrigel Maurer’s one day coaching. Pat was the lab rat, Marcus and I along for the ride. We’d sat out a rainstorm in the…

1 min

SILVER LINING A pilot above Kopaonik at the European Paragliding Championships in Serbia in August flirts with some big clouds and a rapidly developing sky. FIELD OF VISION Matjaz Klemencic sets out his stall above the market town of Avdojscina in Slovenia last year. As at home on his hang glider as his paraglider, Matjaz also works for Triple Seven. TRAFFIC JAM They call the Chaine des Aravis in the French Alps a ‘motorway’, where you’ll mix it up with sailplanes, hang gliders and paragliders galore. This must be one of the quiet days. MORNING GLORY Nicolas Cochet enjoys the morning air above Accous in the French Pyrenees. Flyable all year except in October, when the valley is closed to pilots for the hunting season.…

2 min
in the core

UK runs out of space The UK’s XC Season went into overdrive in July culminating in an epic day on 3 August that saw two pilots break both the paragliding and hang gliding national records. Launching from Milk Hill, a series of shallow slopes in the south of England, Mark Watts and Al Wilson flew separate tracks downwind across flatlands to the coast, a distance of around 270km. Dodging airspace and taking advantage of a 30km/h wind that blew them on their way, the pilots racked up average speeds of circa 50km/h and a top speed of 87km/h. Mark Watts on his Enzo 2 got the overall record at 275.5km while Al Wilson hit 267.4km flying his EN B GIN Carrera. Both pilots celebrated their flights with a cup of tea.…

1 min
crowning glory

Torsten Siegel and Seiko Fukuoka were crowned new European paragliding champions in August after a two-week competition in Serbia. The comp saw “difficult” conditions, with strong wind and rain for the first week and then relatively low cloudbase and tricky conditions with stable conditions out in the flats. With lots of no-shows – the PWC the week before, the Superfinal in September and qualification for the World Championships next year were some of the reasons given – there were plenty of gaps to fill on the pilot list. That meant France, Germany, Poland and Czech Republic all fielded teams of 10 – four more than the usual team size of six – while Italy, Slovenia, GB and Switzerland all had larger teams than normal. After a week of waiting the competition finally…

1 min
in brief

Bill Moyes honoured Hang gliding pioneer Bill Moyes has been awarded the prestigious Gold Air Medal by the FAI, for contributions to the development of aeronautics. Previous recipients include Charles Lindbergh, Yuri Gagarin and Chuck Yeager. Congratulations Bill! Woody Valley safety notice on buckles Some lightweight automatic Woody Valley harness chest buckles have been found to be faulty: the side buttons stick when squeezed and don’t pop out to their original position. Woody Valley will replace any affected buckles. www.woodyvalley.eu Get ready to tumble Acro meister Pál Takáts is laying the ground work for a new acro film he wants to make. It will be released on his website JustAcro.com in Spring 2015.…

1 min
clip in

Skyman String Skyman’s super-skinny String harness weighs under 300g, including AustriAlpin Stratus karabiners. An airbag and front-mount Ultra-Cross lightweight reserve (925g for loads up to 100kg) are available as options. www.skyman.aero 777 Triple Seven Gliders have unveiled their first lightweight hike and fly harness. You can buy it as a straightforward harness, or reversible with a rucksack. www.777gliders.com Coconea Lite Skyman have also released a new pod XC harness. The Coconea is a seat-board design with a mousse protector and a reserve housing. Certified and available in two sizes it weighs 3.6kg and 3.8kg, with a choice of leg cover lengths. www.skyman.aero…