El Yelmo International Festival of the Air is back in Segura de la Sierra, Andalucia, Spain, on 1-3 June 2018. Now in its 19th edition, the free-flying festival promises three days of fun in the Spanish sun, with airshows, a trade fair, conferences, a competition and the International Festival of Air Cinema.
Hundreds of paraglider and paramotor pilots are expected, with 20,000 spectators over the weekend.
The Icarus trophy paramotor adventure race will take place in southern Africa in 2018.
“This is the Icarus Trophy on steroids, adventure on a baobab stick”.
The race will be around 1,000 miles long, depending on the actual route chosen by participants. Pilots will start at Hartbeespoort near Johannesburg in South Africa on 25 July, and cross Botswana to finish in Zambia a few days later. Pilots have to land and cross borders on foot, and their passports will be checked for the appropriate stamps! More on the 2018 route here.
This year again there will be an Adventure Division (supported, no race element), and a Race Division (no designated supporter, but pilots can use ‘open access’ support- anything that the average person can access.
“Should they manage to charm total strangers into lending their assistance, that’s kosher. They cannot use help offered by friends, distant relatives, other pilots or the race team to further their progress.
“Probably the key part of any adventure is the adventurous bits. And that means setting out into the world and fending for yourself. Anything else becomes a bit less exciting. It starts to remove all the fun bits, like ‘where the hell will I sleep?’ or ‘what do I do now I’ve run out of fuel?’ And it starts to become a bit of a guided tour.”
All competitors must carry their own food, clothes and sleeping equipment (although if you land near a hotel it’s within the rules to use it) and basic paramotor spares. Competitors are tracked, and are sent regular weather reports. There’s also a support truck following just in case, although, “It will probably take a while to reach you if you land in the middle of the desert, so best pack some sandwiches”.
Hang glider and paraglider adventure pilot Antoine Boisellier, and the UK’s young acro star Jack Pimblett, will be among the speakers at the Ozone Free Flight Session on 15 November 2018.
Hosted by Jocky Sanderson, the session is just one part of the four-day Kendal Mountain Film Festival, which runs from 15-18 November 2018.
The Ozone Free Flight Session starts at 19:30 on Thursday 15 November at Kendal Town Hall. Tickets are on sale now and cost £12.50 for adults, or £7.50 for under-18s.
The full program of events can be seen here.
The Endless Foot Drag PPG gathering will be taking place from 20-27 May 2019 at Fredonia, Kansas.
The $50 pilot registration fee includes a T-shirt and hat. Pilots can camp onsite – there will be toilet facilities and food trucks – or there are two motels in the town.
There will be a trade show, cross country scavenger hunt with cash prizes and other friendly comps and fireworks on 25th.
Pilots should be PPG 2 rated. For any pilots who wish to attend but do not have this rating, prior permission is required before flying at the event.
The UK’s music and flying festival, Parafest, returns to the stunning setting of Caerwys in North Wales in July 2019.
Parafest is the UK’s only event for all foot launched and single-seat trike aviation. The festival site is ideally placed for access to both coastal and mountain flying, with several North Wales flying sites a short drive away for free-flyers, and a dedicated field for powered craft to use from Thursday to Sunday.
There will be a trade show with demo equipment available, and the British Vintage Hang Glider Rally will be on site with up to 40 fully rigged gliders charting the history of UK hang gliding from its beginnings to the present day.
The pilot-run ‘Fly Inn’ bar will be stocked with Welsh real ales, gins, rums, Pimms, Prosecco, cocktails and more. In addition there will be arts and crafts markets, a children’s area, live music from 1pm to 1am on the Friday and Saturday nights, sideshows and much more.
Tickets are on sale now and cost £65 for pilots (Thursday to Sunday) or £55 for non-flyers. Under-16s are free and dogs are welcome. Organisers warn, “Parafest sells out to capacity every year and tickets must be bought in advance from the website”.
The magical mayhem of the Coupe Icare takes place on the third weekend of September at Saint Hilaire du Touvet and the Lumbin landing field near Grenoble in the south of France.
This year’s festival pays homage to the great Leonardo Da Vinci, who died 500 years ago! There will be an exhibition at the church of Saint Hilaire and shows on the theme of the great Italian inventor.
A huge trade show takes over two large marquees as well as outdoor stands; demonstration flights from all sorts of craft fill the sky, and the fancy-dress fly down is one of the event’s biggest draws, with some truly crazy costumes. Don’t forget the all-important film festival that runs throughout the long weekend. As well as all of this, the south take-off becomes a children’s wonderland, with activities from kite-making to science lessons to meeting birds of prey.
Paragliding from the sites during the daytimes is restricted to fancy-dress competitors and authorised pilots, but plenty make the early-morning hike to the Dent de Crolles if conditions allow, for a morning fly down among hot air balloons.