Wednesday, October 7, 2009

Spiral Dive

In the first video, a pilot enters a thermal (rising air column), makes a mistake or two RE brake control, and his wing enters an uncontrollable down spiral; luckily he properly deploys his reserve parachute, which saves his life. Pilot Joe Parr does a good job of keeping his head in this situation. Note that at the last moment, though, of landing in the trees, he should stiffly grasp his own neck to prevent sharp branches from puncturing critical blood vessels.

You can recover from some spirals, though, in fact you can practice them, as seen below in a nice demonstration of inducing a dive and then recovering from it:

In Alaska, I won't have to worry about flying into thermals--all the air will be particularly and uniformly cold. Still, good lessons, including "Better to throw the reserve earlier rather than later."

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