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Globetrotters: Eliane Ott and Moritz Leiser

Friday 14 November, 2014

Eliane Ott and Moritz Leiser are two Swiss paraglider pilots who are setting off this week to travel the world. They’ll be posting here every month, or you can follow them in German at www.globegliders.ch.

Eliane Ott with all her gear. All photos: Elliane Ott and Moritz Leiser

Eliane Ott with all her gear. All photos: Elliane Ott and Moritz Leiser

We are sitting in the middle of a big mess. Clothes, electronic devices and paragliding gear are spread out all around us.

In the last few weeks we have sold a big part of our belongings, moved out of our apartment and completed heaps of paperwork. All this while still working at our jobs. We’ve even found some time to test our brand new paragliding equipment. 

Moritz Leiser

Moritz Leiser

These things around us, are everything we will carry with us during the next year, because in only six days we will embark on a one year long paragliding adventure around the world.

We’ve dreamt of travelling the world since a very long time. And as we both paraglide it was obvious that we would take our paragliding gear with us. How nice it would be to see the wild beauty of the world from above, then land on a riverside, pitch our tent where we like, sleep and do it all over again in another place the next day. Travelling slowly and getting to know the people and the culture of each country we visit. 

Test flying the new gliders in Interlaken, Switzerland

Test flying the new gliders in Interlaken, Switzerland

First stop is Buenos Aires, Argentina. From there we will move down further south. After that we go back up through the Andes and visit Chile, Bolivia and Peru.

In summer 2015 we’ll be touring trough Europe and thereafter move on to Asia. There’s no fixed itinerary and no return date, but we plan to come back to Switzerland after 10 to 14 months.

Bird's eye view of Interlaken. The first stop for the pair is Argentina

Bird’s eye view of Interlaken. The first stop for the pair is Argentina

Our goal is not to achieve new records in any discipline. We don’t want to fly the furthest or the highest. We are just two pilots who want to fly new places and marvel at the landscape with a bird’s eye view.

But we’re not there yet. First we need to pack all these things around us into our backpack systems. We have 90 liters space available each. This may sound like a lot, but when you mind the volume of a normal paraglider there’s not much else you could pack.

All packed up and ready to go

All packed up and ready to go

Fortunately the KEA and the GII 2 from Sky pack easily into a 50 litre drybag. That even includes essentials like a rescue, GoPro and a Skytraxx variometer. That leaves 40 liters of space for all the other things we want to take with us.

Now the endless hours of playing TETRIS as kids are finally paying out. We only need four tries until everything is packed. 

We are ready, now let’s go fly!


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