In the morning I return my van and check in at the airport. Around noon my plane leaves for europe. A lot of ideas are in my head, what could I have done better, what could I improve, what else could I do, that I never have done before. Next autumn will come. Probably rather sooner than later. I hope to turn at least some of those ideas into reality.
Montag, 23. März 2015
I sleep on the ridge above San Antonio, a farm land village, where I flew in the years of 2002 and 2003. But the day does not show thermal activity, that would allow nice flying there, so I drive down to the coast, where my old friend Victor is running a place with take off for coastal hang out soaring. I chill around in the nice sea breeze and between the flights Victor and I share old pics and movs and other memories around the "good old times" and our shared adventures and of course our own deeds and about pilots and friends, we both know. So comes this Chile trip to a smooth and very relaxed ending.
Yesterday late afternoon I started to drive south from Antofagasta towards Santiago, slept near Quebrada Lisa, about where Francois and Martin started their hike and fly adventure, and today I proceed driving on and on and on. When I reach Maitencillo I am a bit to late for evening soaring - the last ones of the local pilots are packing their gliders into their cars and leave to wherever they live - usually in or around Santiago.
I sleep on the Peninsula Mejillones as the south facing coast line of this peninsula shows a lot of uprising condensate all year round and watching this made me curious for years, if I could fly there. I take a walk up the first hills and find a proper place for take off and fly just as supposed, how it would work. It is a national park here since 2010 and noone can be seen anywhere, where I am flying over. The distance to be flown easily without the risk of a walk back to the car instead of a flight back is not to big, but a very nice scenery. As I wanted to do just some recreational soaring on the coast on my way to Santiago I choose a nice beach and land there and take a bath in the pacific ocean. Afterwards, having packed and going back to my car I see the signs, that entering is forbidden for protecting nature reasons. I could not have seen them from the air … and others, who left their plastic bottles, cans and other garbage in this nature paradise obviously mistreated this advise. Hopefully these behaviors turn better and hopefully the chilenian authorities don't follow US regulations to much in terms of "no private aircraft in national parks". Having reached the van I drive over to the Playa Moreno to try a Xcoastal soar flight from the beginning of the rocks with some meters height as far as possible towards Antofagasta and back. But when I come to the La Portada view point park rangers with a siren and a megaphone tell me, that flying here is forbidden - I guess yesterday I was to late and they had already left the place … So I have to turn around and fly back to where I came from. Although this part of the soaring track is underneath the corridor, where passenger plans departing from Antofagasta airport are flying over, is seems to be allowed to paraglide there. As a paraglider you cannot soar up here a tenth of the altitude passenger plans are flying over it seems just common sense, not to forbid the soaring, but compared to other countries, this tolerance is really to be enjoyed.
YouTube : Morro Moreno flying
You Tube : Playa Moreno flying