Thanks Sven for calling it a new dimension…
…and I agree, it does add at least the 3rd dimension into space, as paragliding is an possible extension, even I’m unsure if “meaningful” - depends on whats meaningful at all “Flying higher slopes and creeking the lower one” sounds appealing - in reality faces “some” limitations: Wind direction and wind speed for launching the paraglider, thermals to stay up in the air, possible landing zones in unknown terrain, weight range of the glider, … I think the geography here in Muc (close to the alps, montains to fly, river to boat back into the city) makes it possible - other areas might have more limitations… …or do offer other options and combinations.
Anyway, as I know the area, I tried to do it, as I would be in a more remote area without the possibility to escape in a warm & fully supplied hut (which actually adds a lot of “safety backup” here in the alps, including the possibility to have an helicopter rescue within 20min), including: Full safety equipment for paragliding (Helmet, Rescue parachute, airbag back protection), PFD for the boating section, bivy tent with sleeping bag, small stove and food supply for 3-4 days… (I did use the advantage of getting a beer in the hut ). Reducing weight by reducing on safety equipment would be possible, but not my preference
Besides the bike which I left down on the Isar, I took everything in my reversible paraglider harness, acting reversed as backpack. I did have the boat with me hiking up and flying down (original intention was (and still is) to fly to the source of Isar). Everything did fit as well into the backpack available while flying - but all the stuff adds quite a few kilograms, exceeding my paragliders weight range - however, it was a very windy day and I was glad “to be heavy” on the glider, making it more stable (but as well causing more dynamic reaction in a possible collapse/failure). The maximum weight on a glider depends on the gliders size and specified weight range, e.g. 75-90kg, 85-105kg,… but it is possible to fly under/overweight with some disadvantages.
Flying high depends on weather conditions, skills / experience, and yes, needs some focus to make it feel “safe” - I did fly the last 10 years.
A vision is, to do a similar approach in more remote areas (mhhh Chile/Patagonia/Norway) - but it adds even more effort and possible risk to it. So I call this my first attempts and feasibility studies. A few notes I made for the next attempt:
- Repacking from biking mode in hiking, into paragliding mode, and finally into rafting is an effort and takes time - if possible, simplify.
- Reduce, reduce, reduce: Anything not 100% needed will stay at home - it is “heavy enough”.
- Consider to use the alpine huts & food supply to simplify - it is already complex enough.
- Packs on bike need to be fixed to maintain a 100% natural pedaling position - cycling with bow legs hurts after 50k.
- For hiking, poles are great and help with the weight - I used some wooden sticks, but might use next time trekking poles.
- Make a simpler, not so bulky PFD…
- For fitting the paddle in any backpack, I would love to have a 5 piece paddle - currently have the Manta Ray 4 piece fiberglass.
- Pack the bike “high” on the raft, so that no wheel sticks into the water, as it acts like a paddle/ruder and possible crashes in blocks - but dont pack it to high resulting in a uncomfortable high center of gravity point.
- I’m not happy with the Alpacka Spraydeck. First (as discussed already here in the forum) the velcro on the side doesnt work! It simply does’nt work the way it might be intended, as it continuously gets loose and opens - I think the term “annoying” describes it best. Second, the spraydeck should get higher up on the body, so that it least it would be possible to close it better - pulling the rubber cord to close it just undo’s the velcro on the other side… and third, the most water (almost all) comes into the boat through the spraydeck zipper on my foots - specially when some pack weight pushes down the spraydeck, making it optimized for having a small pool on board where all the water runs into the zipper, and finally into the boat (well, this might be my mistake: Do I need somehow Aquaseal the zippers?)
- Last but not least: Mosquito are hungry beasts and like my blood!
Another option would be to do not only on my own:
Sven, join me… if you dare to tandem paraglide with me… we just need to have a bigger glider, a bigger rescue, a second harness… and a lot of fun to do it.
Hope to see you - greetings Andreas