Supair LEAF 2 review

I first flew the LEAF 2 on an inverted and gusty ‘low down’ day that required fast reactions and high agility. Paired with the very stable ALTIRANDO LITE harness, I found the LEAF 2 unresponsive. It felt entirely ‘average’ and I was worried I couldn’t find anything unique or outstanding to comment on. It just kind of flew around.

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Sailing in the Sky (X-LAKES 2019)

The forecast was normal for the Lake District – in other words, dire warnings of rain and wind. But I’d arranged time off for the weekend and Team South partner Andy was up for a long drive, so we set off for The Flight Park in Keswick.

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Landing safely in a valley wind

In the morning, the wind begins to whisper through the grass. It tickles the trees. By noon, it tugs at the flags and nudges the umbrellas at the café. Landing is easy: point into wind and touch down. But by afternoon, it’s blowing over 30km/h and you’re getting worried. You had a long flight and now you’re dangling over the town. What’s a good approach when the wind is strong?

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Skywalk BREEZE harness review

This modern semi-reclined harness features an inflatable crash protection, which helps to reduce the weight and makes the packing size tiny. It has an integrated reserve pocket, split leg support (without a seatplate) and a lot of storage space in the rear pocket. What makes it really unique is the modular approach that allows you to zip off the protector and reserve and reveal an ultralight mountain harness.

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Advance OMEGA XALPS 3 review

Featuring a minimal line set, simple risers with carbon fibre handles, and those tiny trademark winglets, this is a 2 liner with a flat aspect ratio of 6.95 that weighs only 3.5kg! That would have been enough, but Advance has worked on this wing to make it shine. You can tell on the ground that it is exceptional. What other two-liner can you float up from low angles in light wind, put on a tip and bring back on the brakes, start from a ball, and generally play around on the slope with? It is an absolute pleasure to handle on the ground, with the only slightly demanding characteristic being the tendency to shoot ahead when coming up.

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Supair ALTIRANDO LITE harness review

The Supair ALTIRANDO LITE is aimed at Progression Class pilots (typically flying EN A or EN B) who want the security and simplicity of a traditional upright harness but are wanting to make their kit light and compact. It features a split-leg support system and a seat plate. The harness reverses to form a backpack, and it inflates in the air to give you certified airbag back protection that appears large and effective.

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A simple approach to landing setups

For beginner pilots, venturing beyond the safety of the ‘known’ landing field can be scary. How do you know if you can reach another landing? What if there’s a power line? And without a windsock, how will you know which way the wind is blowing? Let’s take a look at a simple generic landing approach which you can adapt to various situations.

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Triple Seven Q-LIGHT review

As an experienced hike-and-fly enthusiast, a lightweight C is something I am interested in, so I was excited to receive the Q-LIGHT for testing. Triple Seven say “The Q-light is the ideal tool for long, difficult hike&fly adventures in remote mountain areas. It has a high passive safety level in combination with performance that is way out of its class.”

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Getting into Hike & Fly

There is a growing Hike & Fly ‘scene’ in the UK, with the X-Lakes event (Northern England) and the Dragon Race (Wales). On the Continent there are many events to choose from. Longer ‘volbiv’ trips can be achieved anywhere there are mountains. It takes the focus off the numbers (XC league scores) and is more about adventuring through a landscape, on foot or in the air.

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Nova MENTOR 6 paraglider review

It’s only two years since I reviewed the Mentor 5 (and the Mentor 4, 2 years before that). NOVA have a regular release schedule and are bang on target with this update, ‘A sports intermediate for cross-country and fun flying’. Has the reliable stalwart of the ‘high B’ class changed much?

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