15: Advanced Ground Handling

It’s surprising what can be done with these wings when you know how, and how skilled kiter makes it look so effortless. This chapter and these extras provide tips that can help towards that end. Even for experienced pilots, some of these techniques may offer fun new things to conquer.

A bonus is that mastering the wing means mastering launch. A powered paraglider is far more about the paraglider than it is anything else and these skills dramatically broaden the conditions you can accept. Even for those who don’t plan on flying in rowdy weather, learning these in a safe environment will help cope with surprises.

Sometimes, adeptness at light-wind handling that will save the day. And sometimes specific techniques, once mastered, can serve as tools to solve a nettlesome launch problem.

As long as there’s nothing to get dragged through, pull your wing out and take a stab at improving high-wind technique. Take it slowly: if you haven’t mastered the 12 mph breeze, don’t go to the 17, master the 12 first then go to the 15. High winds are risky! Use wide open areas with nothing dangerous downwind to get dragged through.

Crosswind Takeoff

Your site is a driveway. It’s long, there are no obstructions except line snagging beans to your left and right. But it’s crosswind. What to do? This situation has come up in my flying a lot, especially since I deplore taking off over water at beaches. If...

Flying Backwards in a Paraglider

Chapter 15, Advanced Ground Handling, covers The Alan Method of reverse kiting. This method can also allow you to fly backwards. Recently, we set out to get pictures of this technique and others from one of our motor haunts near Chicago. The chosen hill, a dirt pile,...

Light Wind Paramotor Reverse

The PPG Bible describes how most pilots do reverse launches—throttle in one hand and A-risers in the other. For light winds, the cross-armed method is recommended and indeed it is probably the most effective. But another method works almost as well with less fuss. It...