Paragliding in Paradiski - summer flashback

Nearly two weeks of storms building each afternoon, and two weeks of evening paragliding cancelled as a result for the Arc 1800 'Ecole de Parapente'. But our luck was in - the forecast for Wednesday evening was for clear skies, and our three instructors were so pleased to get up into the air for an evening flight that the kids' 20 minute flights were extended to the best part of an hour...

Paradiski - the Les Arcs La Plagne ski area in the Savoie, France

Scheduled take off was from above Vallandry, at close to 2000m, landing down in the valley floor near Hauteville Gondon, 1200m below. The paragliding school works closely with Arc Aventures. While waiting for our instructors, a local Savoyard farmer strolled past, taking his geese for a stroll...

click on pic to see full-size photoThe plan was to get down to the landing field before the take-off from Vallandry, but we needn't have rushed - the sole customer at the buvette was a dog who that clearly belonged to one of the instructors, and he obviously knew the form. It was a good 15 minutes before he opened his eyes, stretched, and started studying the sky ...

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More laid-back sporting pastimes in the small lake behind the paragliding centre, a single angler, two keepnets brimming with fish...

click on pic to see full-size photoUp above there was action at last. At one point there were twenty-three dots in the sky, impossible to tell which was which until they got closer. To begin with they headed over towards the Bellecote glacier - we learned later that the conditions had been perfect, with loads of lift from the evening thermals, helping them to climb to close to 3000m...

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The view from up in the air was a little different...

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These shots taken by the instructor, 'Franck'...


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...along with some video sequences. Compressed for this blog, but the original clips are high resolution, along with some good stills, all put on CD by the instructor for collection the following morning for 20€ - pretty good value I reckon...

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click on pic to see full-size photoComing in to land...

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Unanimous approval from all three passengers on the 'two-seater' rides, although there was a certain amount of relief at getting back down on terra firma!...

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