Icarus Trophy Report - Day 7

It’s going jolly good. With bouts of terror.
— Mr Tom

Not a brilliant forecast today as the weather system passes but we've still got plenty of flying to report. 

Almost all the Adventure Class got up in the air for cheeky local flights around Weed, California. Just 'some local cruising around because the landscape's pretty nice." So says race referee Kester Haynes. This included Claire Mackay who has had a problem-free flight after a weeks worth of trouble. How was it Claire? "It was great." Good stuff.  

The view from Weed Airport

Only Ed and Harry took on the pass - choosing to fly against the recommendations of the race team. According to Ed, he was getting "a bit moody" on the ground and just decided to go for it. Flying in the "sweet spot" below the clouds and above the ground, they left just after 12:30 and arrived at Mountain Gate 2.15hr later.  According to Harry "it might have been a bit unwise. The rain didn't make it any easier." From here, they've only got the last stretch past Sacramento before they arrive at Blackhawk Paramotor Ranch. 

When we landed I got a little hysterical apparently. I think it was the adrenaline and getting over the not-dying.
— Ed

Definitely land-bound for the foreseeable future is Toby Osborne who has broken his ankle. He was flying on the leg from Madras to Bend when faced with adverse weather conditions and on the advice of the race team, he needed to land early. The problem? "I chose a shit field" says Toby. After dodging two sets of previously unseen power lines, he hit a third. He was helped down by some locals, after they had established the essentials: "What is that thing?" and "Do you have any weapons?" 

He's been recuperating well over the weekend as he adjusts to life in a cast.  Mindful of his duty as a Rugby-loving-Welshman, he contacted the local rugby team and was invited with Icarus teammate Jamie to join them for Wales v South Africa. Wales lost. Not the boost he was hoping for perhaps. Nevertheless, Toby is remaining resolutely cheerful: "You've got to look on the bright side." That's the spirit Toby: Wales may be out of this World Cup but you were in it longer than England.

Meanwhile further south, ByRy have gone their separate syllables. Ryan "Ry" Southwell took the day off flying, except the short flight he took to get to a church.  Showing a corresponding degree of dedication, Byron "By" Leisek also performed a hop and a skip; to get to a taco stand. The tragedy is that Byron, clearly less aware of the day of the week than his teammate, turned up at the "worlds best taco truck" on a Sunday. The one day they are closed. Tomorrow, he plans to be off early to rendezvous with bulk of Adventure Class, but he assures us that when he finds them, he'll round up a group for another taco run.  

The discerning paramotor pilot's wardrobe. LOL Byron, looks like you know how to get around on that thing pretty good now ;)

Posted by Shane Denherder on Sunday, October 18, 2015


It was a week ago today that our pilots first took off from Eatonville. After a weather-beaten weekend, we don't have many flying pictures to share but these should hit the spot: