Humans have always envied the way that birds fly in the air, and though we now have airplanes to take us through the air to our destinations, sitting in a pressurized cabin is not quite the same as feeling the wind as you glide through the sky. Thanks to new developments in the sport of hang-gliding it is now possible for more people to have the bird-like experience of gliding through the air.
If you have always wanted to try out hang gliding then one of the best places to do it as at the Wallaby Ranch Hang Gliding Flight Park near Orlando, Florida. Wallaby Ranch is the ideal place to try out the sport of hang gliding as it offers the most up-to-date method of hang gliding: tandem aero-towing. The development of tandem aero-towing, where a two-place hang glider is being towed by a specially designed ultra-light tow-plane, has greatly increased the accessibility of the sport.
Previously it was only possible to learn hang gliding with months of training on a hill and then launching from a high mountain site. This arduous sequence has been eliminated at Wallaby Ranch. You ride with in tandem with an experienced instructor and are towed 2000 feet into the air. Once you are released from the tow-plane or “tug” you will free-fly for 15 minutes and your instructor will show you how to control the glider by shifting your weight and easing into a smooth rolling landing.
Because the flights are undertaken with the guidance of a skilled instructors it has been possible for people from age 4 to 90 to enjoy the experience. The weight range of participants has also been varied, going from 35 lbs. to 240 lbs.
Wallaby Ranch also prides itself in offering a number of other amenities in addition to the gliding facilities. They have tent camping, cabins, a 27,000 gallon swimming pool, a climbing wall and a children’s playground complete with a Dr. Seuss tree house. Thee are also mountain bike and walking trails on the ranch.
Wallaby also offers multi- lesson packages for beginners and three, five and seven day training clinics for advanced pilots.
If you want to do more than just a single flight with an instructor then the lesson packages are what you need. During the lessons a highly experienced certified tandem instructor will fly with you and will teach you ‘hands-on’ – literally. During your first few flights, the instructor will do the take-off and landing, allowing you to concentrate on following the tow-plane and learning how to steer the glider without having to worry about landing approach and touchdown. Then you will be given more and more control each flight, in accordance with your rate of progress. Before soloing, you will be able to launch, aero-tow, free-fly, set up a landing approach and land the tandem glider, without your instructor having to do anything at all.