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Date: January 15th, 2006
Driving down California's 138 I kept seeing signs for the Great Western Soaring School, so I figured I'll give them a call. I got to fly with Fred, the owner of the company. This was a really awesome experience. There weren't any thermals this time of year, so we used the wind blowing over the mountains to bring us up. I was pretty amazed just how quickly these little planes climb even without any thermals. I didn't do any actual flying on this trip, simply because I spent all the air time checking out the scenery and taking photos.
Here we are getting towed towards Mt. Baden Powell
Flying over Baden Powell. This took whole lot less time than my hike. From Baden Powell we turned east and headed towards Mountain High Ski Resort. Here we turned around, and after a little "wave" to the skiers, we started heading back west.
Back over the desert, heading back to the airport. That little string over the canopy is used to indicate wind direction. Fred demonstrated the ground effect before landing. We were coasting perhaps only one or two feet above ground before he pushed the plane down.
Fred and our little plane. The whole flight took around 30 minutes.
My bike at the dirt parking lot. Another client is taking off in the background.
And there they go...