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Mountain Thermalling and Beginner XC Tuition

This is a combined Mountain and Thermalling XC course for pilots new to this environment: it's a great introduction into Mountain flying!

The course has been developed to help pilots understand and achieve more from flying their wings efficiently, finding and using thermals, reading the terrain and advancing into XC flight! The tuition is tailored to the needs of each individual pilot.

The class size is limited to a maximum of 3 participants, unless a group of friends would all like to book on one course. Then the groups size would be limited to 6 pilots and the price adjusted accordingly!

This spectacular region has a number of exclusively pure thermalling sites to work from. The sites range from 750 - 1370m above the valley floor and have access either by road or cable car, and the ideal months for Thermalling Class are from late April to late August! when conditions are at their best!


Equipment inspection and advice. Before flying, we look at your equipment in detail, especially at your seated or podded position which may effect your ability to thermal efficiently in a relaxed manner. Your reserve housing and deployment techniques will be checked. Your variometer/GPS and electronics are calibrated and we make sure they are positioned so they can be easily read in flight! Don't forget the instruction manual and cables!!

Launches and Landings. If required your launch and landing techniques are refreshed for mountain conditions. 

Glider control. Vast alpine flights give us time perfecting efficient 360 turns and accuracy positioning our gliders for best climbs. We will offer suggestions and ideas on how to fly your glider effectively and efficiently making the most in thermal climbs. We also help with your variometer and/or GPS to make the most of each and every flight developing efficient speeds-to-fly in gliding flight.

Effects of Turbulence. By employing the correct defensive (active) flying techniques, the effects of turbulence can be minimized. We deal with recovery from the effects of turbulence, such as, how to reduce the chances of asymmetric and symmretric closures. As we have flying sites with plenty of height we could practice asymmetric closures and pitch control exercises if they haven't been covered beforehand and of course at the pilots discretion!

Descent Techniques. We look at and practice safe rapid techniques using big ears and speed bar and fast 360's leading to spiral dives, again at the pilots discretion!

Speeds to Fly. Using the speed bar effectlively making the most from each transitional glide between thermals, into wind or with valley crossings!

Site Briefings. Each day and at each site visited you will be briefed comprehensively on the launch and landing areas, where the best thermals may be and how to make the most of your flights. You will also be advised of all the danger areas.

Flying Conditions. We try to look in detail at mountain weather and valley conditions. (It's a vast subject.) We learn about thermal development and study thermal source and trigger points. We discuss techniques for finding and staying with them, allowing you to maximize your height gains. Where applicable we introduce cross country flying techniques and brief you on appropriate and achievable tasks.

Lectures. Some mornings there will be a theory lecture covering the days topics. There will be a personal debrief after flying and a general debrief in the evening or before the lecture the following morning.

We use radios and encourage pilots to fly independently making their own decisions.

Minimum requirements for a Thermalling Class is CPC/Novice level + 25hrs airtime or more with good ground handling ability, all equipment including reserve parachute, variometer, GPS, and radio with helmet headset.

We have radios for hire at 10€ (Euros) a day. Our own licensed 2m band radio frequency is 161,325. Please bring the appropriate instruction manuals, battery chargers cables and computer cables. Don’t forget your logbook, proof of membership, qualifications and insurance details.

For more details have a look at: 'Here are some Notes'. The cost for local flying is 220€ (Euros) a person/day, 270€ for 2 pilots, or 300€ for 3 pilots: for groups ask us for a quote.

This tuition is available throughout the flying season. Please check the Availabilty Page for dates

PLEASE NOTE: all dates require booking please see the Prices Page for booking details and terms.

Fifty Ways to Fly Better Here is some great reading from BRUCE GOLDSMITH, World Champion pilot and one of the World's most experienced glider designers. Fifty Ways to Fly Better is essential for all pilots who want to reach their potential. It is packed with the latest techniques from Bruce Goldsmith and some valuable tips from the world’s best pilots and instructors. 35 Euros plus postage. We have this in stock!

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