There are many ways to get an introduction. Most schools take advantage of a blend of technology and natural resources. Here in Oregon we have an abundance of beautiful natural resources to fly. The following video provides a good overview. If you are still not sure what hang gliding is all about, taking a five hour introductory lesson provides the most fun and best overview of the sport. It includes a very interesting groundschool on how a hang glider flies and teaches the basics of assembly, launch and ground skimming on the lower slopes of the dune. The student gets to practice first in a simulator. You are then assisted and supervised in 7-12 actual flights that begin in ground skims. Your feet leave the ground 3 to 5 feet and you can begin to practice straight and level flight. Be careful though, its hard to just have one lesson! You might as well pay for three day weekend camp lesson that has no flight limits. Check the Schedule for camp availability. Cost $130.00 per person Group Rate (4 or more) $100.00 per person
If you weigh 160 lbs or less, you may get a solo tandem experience. First, you take a solo lesson. This teaches you the basics of launch and landing and crucial safety factors involved in tandem flight. If the wind is right, you then experience mulitiple lower alitude tandems or one higher alitude tandem. Since tandems require precise conditions for safety, we may not be able to fulfill the tandem portion on the same day, but you will be contacted when the conditions are right. Flexibility in scheduling is required. But anything worthwhile takes some effort and desire. Cost: $220.00
Becoming a Rated Pilot
These lessons build on the introductory lesson material above using United States Hang Gliding Association competency standards. Ground school is integrated into the lesson before and after dune and hill and training. Mountain flying skills are introduced after solid low alitude Hang II skills are attained. Each lesson-day averages 7-12 flights. 14 lesson-days are usually required to gain the necessary proficiency to become an independent mountain or tow pilot. Since equipment is akin to feathers on a bird, and your performance reflects upon the program, only recommended equipment with modern handling characteristics and fitted will be associated with the program. No exceptions. Paced personal equipment purchase that synchronizes with advanced lessons is highly recommended and assures the best results. Statistically, students following this route, spend less money and time, make less mistakes, have the smoothest entry and acceptance among the advanced flying community. Please resist the temptation to attain equipment without communicating with the instructor.
The Four Step Program
Over 40 flight proficiences in four steps are learned in series. Each package of 3 lessons is purchased seperately during the program. Lesson step package can be applied to single day lessons and camps. Beware that sporadic lessons require constant review and relearning. Taking regularly scheduled lessons saves money!
Each step teaches Hang I, Hang II and Mountain and/or tow skills in sequence. Radio communication, video review, parachute course and tandem instruction is used in training. The cost of the training is significantly decreased because of the student's time and financial committment and subsequent increase in effective learning. A Step Card is given each student to help track progress. There are a number of lessons on one side of the card and list of proficiences on the other side. As you take a lesson, your proficiences are checked off.
This training program is comprised of four 3 day-lesson training camps. Time between camps can used to study for the written examinations. It is designed for timely completion and least amount of expense, yet allowing for weather and flying site variability - crucial experiences for real flying skill. Sporadic lessons wastes time, money and effort in reviewing previous material.
Friday through Mondays (the long weekend) are generally reserved for lessons. Those requiring mid-week lessons can be accommodated. A scheduling contract is strongly recommended for steady progress in learning.
Develop strong launch, on-course flying, and landing skills in straight flight from the 50-100 foot level and the written hang I test. $130.00 per lesson. No flight limits when bought in a package of three. $100 per lesson and ham radio clinic with helmet/radio purchase.
Learn how to handle more wind/altitude, vary airspeed, coordinate turns, fly in a prone (horizontal position, to land on a target, and the written hang II test. $150.00 per lesson. No flight limits when bought in a package of three. $100 per lesson and mountain risk managment clinic with glider purchase.
Learn how to make an approach on a landing field through tandem instruction, assess mountain conditions and general meterology, learn how to pack and throw your emergency parachute, practice 3 supervised high altitude flights $130.00 per lesson. No flight limits when bought in a package of three. $100 per lesson and parachure packing clinic with harness/parachute purchase.
Learn how to soar by extending your flight by using natural lift, learn towing from flat ground, become more confident with different mountain launch sites. Mentors from the established flying community are assigned to assure your continuing success after graduation and attained Hang II rating. $150.00 per lesson. No flight limits when bought in a package of three. $100 per lesson and weather clinic with variometer purchase.Cost Recap: $130 per lesson (7-10 flights) in first and third step. $150 per lesson in second and fourth step. $100 per lesson and free clinics with equipment purchase. No flight limits when lesson purchased as a step of three lessons. Assigned mentors with successful completion of program recommendations.