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flying alone?!

It's okay
It's not okay
The third option
User avatar
By AlaskanNewb
old newbie wrote:Unless you're tandem you're always alone.

I fly alone 90 percent of the time.
Aside from launching it is safer.
No one can help you in the air, but if you are alone you have less potential obstacles.

I find flying alone to be waayyy more fun. More peaceful.
Bottom line is HG's and PG's are not safe. We all accept that. Having someone in the air with you makes no difference.

Steve Forslund

User avatar
By Wonder Boy
If I ddint fly alone I would never get to fly.

I am responsible for myself whether someone else is there or not.
Relying on someone else for me is pointless.

Whatever is going to happen..... will happen

By Phoenix
Last edited by Phoenix on Sun Nov 24, 2013 4:47 am, edited 1 time in total.
User avatar
By brian scharp
People's consideration of the impacts an accident would have on others, vary greatly. Tandem adds another dimension. Although you're technically not alone, you shouldn't assume your passenger will be able to help in case of an accident. If you're launching tandem without other witness's, I would put that in the flying alone category with the added responsibility of the passenger, and how they feel about all that stuff.
By Phoenix
Last edited by Phoenix on Sun Nov 24, 2013 4:46 am, edited 1 time in total.
User avatar
By Rebardan
When I was an air horny young guy I sometimes flew alone on weekdays, as I worked nights and had to be at work by 5.

I realized right away that in addition to possibly higher risk, flying alone wasn't as enjoyable as flying with friends, even if the friends were just guys along for the ride to drive and fly their RC's or take pics.
User avatar
By Zeph
One of the best parts of flying is flying with buddies, but if you live in a place where there are very few pilots, it's either fly when you can, or just don't fly at all. In Iowa I fly 90% FLPHG anymore. But if I do fly "alone" I will at least try to go to a grass strip or somewhere where there is someone around to make a call just in case...
User avatar
By mark selner
if you fly alone you can write a note of location so if you don`t show up they will find your remains after the bugs eat you.this is what i do then get to the note before any one finds it :thumbsup:
User avatar
By Aldpal
There are a lot of variables to your question. Obviously launching and flying alone especially at a remote site adds more risk, but you can do things to mitigate the odds. I have launched and flown from the E in Elsinore with no one around, because the soaring conditions were so promising. If the conditions at launch are less than ideal, I have/will have a higher threshold on my Go/NoGo decision if no one else is around. Having a radio and cell phone increases your odds, in an emergency. I have also gone XC on days when the only other pilots are staying local. Does that not bring up the same issue (other than blowing your launch) once you leave the local gaggle and venture out alone? Are you going to question whether any one should continue a flight out of sight of other gliders. This whole sport (art) of soaring is based on multiple calculated risks, in various stages of each flight. That is one of the joys and challenges of flying. Each person has to make their own decision on how much risk they want. In general I don't want to be the one telling some one else where to draw the line. On the other hand if some one chooses to fly a remote site alone, and then chooses to do a down wind or in some other compromising launch condition, and they choose not,to wear a helmet , or fly with a (repacked current) reserve chute, with out a radio, with out telling anyone where they were going. yada, yada, yada, then I am not going to have as much sympathy for any preventable consequences.
User avatar
By Tasi
Wonder Boy wrote:If I ddint fly alone I would never get to fly.

I am responsible for myself whether someone else is there or not.
Relying on someone else for me is pointless.

Whatever is going to happen..... will happen


And remember some people don't have a choice.
I have to launch, fly and further recover my car alone most of the time. The biggest turn off is the time that I have to come up with something to return to my car, leave the glider in the bush and come back again.

Got family and kids, but if don't do that, it's no fly for me and I obviously don't want that for my own private reasons of "why I fly".
Flying with others is fun though :) :-o

There are a lot of other associated risks with flying and flying alone is a small percentage of it.

i.e. be physically and mentally ok, have the nerve to tell yourself not today, be aware of conditions and meteorology, don't go somewhere you're not supposed to and have a sound glider that will stay in one piece when the s--- hits the fan.
User avatar
By Paul H
Phoenix wrote:I voted no because my friend Tahir attempted a top landing on the 1750', got rotored. I don't remember how anyone found out, but he had no vehicle on top.
Maybe the ranger found his car in the parking lot, I think.
Tahir had already done a couple of top landings and relaunches that day. I don't remember if he was found by someone doing a vehicle retrieve or if somebody noticed that they hadn't seen him in a while.
Flying alone isn't the dangerous part, running into the edges of the air with no one around to witness it is.
Last edited by Paul H on Sat Nov 23, 2013 4:28 am, edited 1 time in total.
By Phoenix
Last edited by Phoenix on Sun Nov 24, 2013 4:44 am, edited 2 times in total.
User avatar
By ChattaroyMan
I occasionally fly alone. I even have when pioneering a new site. I let people know where I'm at, etc. Basically, in our area we do not have a large supply of pilots and our flying sites are wide spread. There are times when I can go flying and others can't or they head to another flying site. Two pilots in the area have small dirt bikes they bring along and leave in the LZ in order to retrieve their vehicles. I'm getting one next year to do the same. Once I do I'll fly alone more often - likely as much as 50% of the time. I enjoy flying alone as much as I do when flying with others. When alone I have a bit different perspective of the whole flying experience - sort of like being unseen and just a part of the natural ebb and flow of the atmosphere/countryside.
By Phoenix
Last edited by Phoenix on Sun Nov 24, 2013 4:46 am, edited 1 time in total.
User avatar
By BBJCaptain
I probably broke more of the unforgivable rules of the mainstream mentality here. I taught myself to fly completely alone. I transitioned to
the next gliders alone. I probably wouldn't have 80% of the flight time I have (3500+) if I didn't. Shortly after I started HG I moved to a little
town North of Vegas and I was the only pilot there. I found a good training hill by the house and flew just about every day after work
alone. There was a stretch for about 8 yrs that there were only 1 or 2 active pilots in Vegas as they all moved away or stopped flying.

HG for me is a unplugged, stress releasing, soul cleansing experience that makes things right in my hectic world. I fly alone now 95% of the
time. Although there are now a hand full of HG pilots in town my schedule hardly ever works out that anyone is on the ridge at the
same time, most of the time I really like it that way. To me, flying around with all those jellyfish at the POTM is more dangerous than flying alone.

I know my limitation and never ever go passed them!!! While alone I never top land or do any spins. I always tell the wife how
long I will be gone, where I am flying and never deviate from that. This is the same thing I do when I fly my Cessna Alone but I
guess that is " really irresponsible " too. I am an Adult fully responsible for my actions and put no one at risk from the choices I make.
At the end of the day isn't that what we are suppose to do as free men (and women)

I have been flying HG since 1979 and the only HG injury I have had is on my second flight I landed on a cactus (fixation) and I broke a
fingernail getting the glider off my truck. Both times I wasn't alone.

I feel really blessed to be able to fly at an unregulated site!

User avatar
By pud
If you tow launch then you will always have other people around you for the take off.
If you want to go XC then you normally have no option but to fly and land alone.

I at least try to land where there is some human activity but this is not always possible due to other safety issues.

There is always someone back at the field waiting for my retrieve call but god knows how they might start looking for me if one never arrives!
By Phoenix
Last edited by Phoenix on Sun Nov 24, 2013 4:45 am, edited 1 time in total.
By Avolare
I'm most likely buying a Mosquito. I'm not excited about it, but I see it as the only way to maintain proficiency, and gain XC skills. There's no one around to fly with, so it's come to be my only option.
Your question is timely, as I was just looking into using a spot locator and having a way to leave that tracking info with the guys at the FBO. If something happens launching, there will be someone to witness. But if something happens while doing a triangle, .... The locator fixes that.
So, is it deemed safe to use a Spot or not, while flying alone?
User avatar
By miraclepieco
If it weren't okay to fly alone there would be little XC.
User avatar
By DBrose
once i flew the mattole (coastal soaring spot in Humboldt) when there was nobody for miles, I was the only human out there besides an occasional car. it was kinda surreal
i told myself I would never do it again. but i think i have
heres mattole with people

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