High Adventure is best known for the Beamer, a well-named steerable Rogallo sytle reserve designed to ‘Beam me down, Scotty’ safely to the surface. We spoke with Urs Haari to see what we could learn about this potentially life saving piece of kit, as well as the latest and greatest accessories.
High Adventure Reserves
High Adventure report the Beamer has been selling very well, with a good increase in sales in 2016, therefore they have no plans to update it beyond releasing a new XL size. Producing a larger size is not simply a matter of scaling up the smaller version, as the higher loading gives a bigger issue with down planning. This size will feature a new fabric featuring excellent tear resistance from Heathcoat Fabrics, an innovative and forward-thinking UK manufacturer, it is slightly heavier but still packs into a small volume.
High Adventure are also working on a new non-steerable reserve which promises to be to super-simple to pack, not even requiring the use of packing loops. Urs didn't want to give away too much at this stage but he said that the reserve has a new form, with a very simple design. It's not quite finished, as they are perfecting materials and awaiting certification.
Read our exclusive interview Urs Haari and the Modern Reserve Parachute.
High Adventure Accessories
XC Griff brake handles
A relatively new product for Flybubble this year, the XC Griff brake handles make a great Xmas present - even if only to yourself!
Normal paraglider brake handles are a compromise: at full acceleration they sit right up at the brake pulleys. At trim speed they have 10-20 cm free play before taking effect. Urs Haari has extensively investigated this problem during many cross country flights and now presents an impressive solution, which does not require handling compromises.
The High Adventure XC-Griff has a large padded brake loop with an ergonomically shaped plastic bar directly under the brake line knot. The advantage: you can adopt the perfect arm position in flight – without having to take a wrap. The brake loop remains around the wrist. The plastic ‘xc bar’ makes long-term, comfortable, energy-saving flying possible. For good glider control, and especially when thermalling, the lower arm should not be too bent, and so held in a mechanically inefficient and tiring position.
When flying accelerated the hands slip into the loops and encourage a clean-gliding, no-brake arm position, while ensuring that immediate active flying is available if necessary. Even with thick gloves you can always easily let go of the brakes – in the worst case to throw your reserve! The shape of the XC-Griff is arranged so that this brake handle replacement does not get caught in the lines when flying hands-off or ground handling.
I have tried ‘ebay type’ brake handle attachments only to take them off after a couple of flights because they had an increased tendency to tangle. Given that Urs has decreased the issue of normal brake handles tangling, I think this makes for an interesting solution which I’ll try out soon. Produced in both popper and magnet versions. If they aren't perfectly compatible, the magnetic/popper counterparts can be retro-fitted to any risers.
Gstar Front Reserve Container
This outstanding lightweight, compact new front mount reserve container features a great design which is reliably quick and easy to locate and deploy, with either the right or left hand, even when subject to high Gs, and even for pilots with shorter arms.
Quick and easy to install, the parachute connector (Y-bridle or Beamer 3 riser extension) simultaneously acts as the container's main hang point. A retrofit riser kit for the Beamer 2 is also available. The Gstar Front Reserve Container comes in 3 sizes, and is compatible with all modern paragliding harnesses and reserves.
Itsy Touch and Itsy Bitsy Touch gloves
Top quality flying gloves, with an excellent warmth-to-tactility ratio. The Itsy Touch is a lightweight glove designed for mild temperatures and sunny days. For spring temperatures or high-Alpine situations above freezing level, consider the 3-season Itsy Bitsy Touch.
Urs is working on an overglove, potentially with a twin finger design, a product we feel is overdue given the gap in the market between normal gloves and the cumbersome riser attached mitt, so watch this space.