They sure know how to treat a snowbird here. Christmas Florida beats
Orlando by a landslide. Of course, being able to fly out of the back
yard doesn't hurt.
I got the full treatment, too. From an outing on the parabarge to the
paramotor extreme makeover capability of Mike, Marty and Rob and
wingsmith Elisabeth. On my last day I even took a spin on the
ParaGoRound. What a hoot! My idea to get photographs while spinning
wasn't so bright—it got made me queasy although I kept lunch down.
Then there was soaring in Melbourne and more power flying at a huge
open abandoned development called GDC. First, the parabarge story.
As most readers know, Mike Britt, along with the help of many
friends, rebuilt a pontoon boat as a paramotor carrier. It's better than
the titanic in unsinkability given that the pontoons are foam filled.
Even if water does get in, it won't fill them. More importantly, the
aluminum deck purpose built for mounting paramotors to the side. And
they're secure enough to put them aboard and use the boat for
transporting them on the trailer, too.
So at 7:30am we loaded the gear, hooked up and headed to the boat
launch only a few miles away. Eric backed the boat down into floating
position and captain mike piloted it to the nearby sand where we all
I'll let the pictures tell the rest. It was a beautiful morning. Fog
was thick at first but burned off in time for some great flying.
1. Bald eagles watch us motor by in the barge. 2.
This battleship wore teeth. 3. Eric guides the boat down while Mike
readies the helm. 4. Myself (Jeff Goin), Scott Adair and Mike Britt do
formation fly bys while Eric snaps photos.
1 & 2. We were just asking how the cows got from one
island to another. Now we know--they swim. 3. Trike flyby.
1. Elisabeth inflating. 2. Rob Catto helps med my
broken cage after a downwind attempt went sour. 3. I got the bright idea
of taking pictures while going around. Need more light. Need more
brains. 4. Yup, that one's hungry. That's why I'm so high.
1. The boat clan Elisabeth & Eric, Mike Britt, Scott
Adair and Jeff Goin. 2. Mike flies by while Elisabeth prepares for
flight two. 3. That splash isn't a goldfish that Mike's scaring away.
Not all alligators are this skittish and one of them looked me over
pretty good. A tasty little 145 pound morsel, he thought. 4. Eric redies
the spot landing target.
1 & 2. My paraGoRound ride. This was the maintenance
test flight for Marty's paramotor. 3. What's wrong with this picture? 4.
Parking the parabarge, Mike guides us to shore while the rest of us mug
for the camera. 5. Eric radio'd us into this formation then snapped the
1. Scott Adair launching. 2. Mike Britt launching. 3.
Mike rounds the tree stand. 4. Mike on the way back.