Monday, December 29, 2008

North Slope news: 28 Dec. 2008

The following is an email from Cameron sent 28 December:

"Today at-23F we spent several hours trying to fly the wing over a small bluff here in Barrow. I managed a short, 3-second flight as well as many inflations and small, low-speed crashes. I'm fine, though, and all the gear is working well...I just need 1-2mph more wind to really get off the snow.

Many thanks to Chiu, who stood filming and waiting in the low temperatures for several hours, and Mark Hoffman who shot these stills. We just keep waiting on the wind to improve. I'm confident that in the next few days I'll get in some better flights. But still, these little efforts have resulted in the first known paralider flights on the North Slope in Winter! Modest flights, on the order of what the Wright brothers first experienced, and that's exactly what I'm here for.

It's easy to fly back at home, where I can go thousands of feet into the air and stay aloft for 10-20 minutes, but the question is, what's it like here? What factors are involved in the cold but dense Arctic Winter air? How do you fly this wonderful invention, the paraglider, in the hardest conditions imaginable? We're finding out! Cheers, Cameron."

Photos below. Click to enlarge. Photos courtesy of Mark Hoffman.

1 comment:

Farnorth said...

Good luck! There was a fellow who used to fly a motorized soft wing paraglider in Barrow back in the 80's down the beach in the summer. There has been a couple of guys who use the traction kites with xc skies as well in the winter.