The tenth Kössen Paragliding Testival is on from 31 May to 3 June 2018.
Last year saw record crowds at the Austrian event, with 4,300 pilots and 7,500 flights flown over four days. It’s rapidly becoming a must-attend for everyone in the paragliding industry.
The idea of the festival is that pilots can turn up, drop off their passport in exchange for a demo wing, and then use the cablecar to swiftly head up for a test fly. Dedicated pilots can fly lots of wings.
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 BP Cup is an entry-level paragliding competition for Pilot rated pilots. No previous competition experience is necessary but you do need to be confident thermalling. Our aims are – flying, fun and learning – in that order!
This is a week of guiding in the local area with practice tasks preceding the Macedonia round of the main competition.
We will be based in the Hotel Montana Palace, just above the town of Krushevo, Macedonia.
The FlyFurther team’s XC camp is a six-day training camp sponsored by Triple Seven, with tuition and guidance from expert pilots.
It takes place in Tolmin, in Slovenia’s Julian Alps, and there are places for 50 pilots with tuition from Nicole Fedele, Bernie Hertz, Pat Dower, Brett Janaway and Stan Radzikowski.
Organisers say it is the perfect training camp for cross-country pilots interested in improving their XC flying skills. Task-focused XC flying will be fully supported with in-depth task briefs and debriefs, talks, parties and more.
All pilots will be given trackers for their safety and for analysing their flights.
Further information and registration at Airtribune.com.
The 2018 Belgian Hang Gliding Open takes place in Tolmin, Slovenia in the first week of July.
“In the tradition of the Belgian nationals, we want to offer a competition for all XC pilot levels: from beginners to very experienced pilots. The main idea is to have a fair and enjoyable Cat 2 competition for everyone.
While we will not be pushing the limits of what can be done with hang gliding, we will of course ensure that the tasks are long enough to have a fair competition. Safety is high on our priority list and the inviting area allows us to set nice and scenic tasks for all experience levels”.
Registration and more information on Airtribune.
“Cosmos, although a small town, has tow roads of gold. You would be surprised how few two-mile sections of rural road are unobstructed by power lines and trees. Cosmos has some of the best. We utilise both N/S and E/W gravel roads for truck tow/platform launches. These are quiet, county roads lined with corn, soybeans, beets and hay for easy bailout LZs as far as you can see”.
Pilots need to be USHPA members, rated H2 or above.
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”.
The Hang Gliding Pre-Worlds 2018 will be based in Tolmezzo, Friuli Venezia Giulia, in the northeast of Italy and will run from 27 July until 4 August.
“The competition flying area will develop above extremely different and vast areas: from the sea to the Dolomites, crossing the flatlands, the Alps and the Prealps. The main competition region will be Friuli Venezia Giulia, but pilots could fly also above some other regions and countries: Veneto, Trentino Alto Adige, Slovenia and Austria“.
More information and registration at Airtribune.com
Parafest, the UK’s family-friendly flying-and-music festival, is back in North Wales from 27-29 July 2018.
Mixing live music and family entertainment with paragliding, hang gliding and paramotoring, Parafest takes place at Llanbedr airfield on the beautiful Welsh coast, at the edge of Snowdonia National Park.
The event will host the UK’s only manufacturers’ trade show as well winch and aerotowing for suitably qualified pilots. There are hill-launch sites just a short drive away, and local pilots will be on hand to brief visitors.
Powered pilots have a dedicated area of the airfield to use for the duration of the event, from which they can explore the miles of unspoilt sandy beaches, the picture-postcard coastal towns and the mountains and valleys of Snowdonia.
“Parafest is not just for pilots it’s for the whole family. Bring your partner, bring the kids, bring non-flying friends – you can even bring the dog!”
A purpose-built stage in the festival arena will host professional live bands who will play until midnight on the Friday and Saturday nights. Party-lovers can then head over to the Asbo Disco, set away from the camping area, where DJs will play on into the wee small hours.