I stare down from 37,000 feet into the darkness below. The lights of the city are fading away as I fly out of Long Beach, California eastward across the desert. As I stare out the window, eyes heavy, I ponder on the activities of today. I guess it all started last night when Mark called and said “Hey, want to go to Southern California and do some paragliding tomorrow?” My knee -jerk reaction, as always…”Absolutely!” Therefore, at 4:45 a.m. I roll from my bed, hop into the car and head to Salt Lake International to catch my flight.
Torrey Pines, a cliff launch over the ocean in butter smooth air. Green grass to launch from, a snack bar, and miles of sandy beach to fly over…what could be better? How about some altitude for starters, and I could actually do without all the old naked guys standing on the beach below playing volleyball…now that is just ‘bad naked.’ Although beautiful, so far as you are looking up, the site becomes quite boring to fly after just a short time. No real altitude here, but pure brainless flying…it was great.
Near lunch time I find myself an hour away from Torrey Pines in a small place called Blossom Valley. You could not find a place more different than Torrey. Dry, dry desert with just prickly plants and barren mountains. However, the thermals are quite strong, and I decide to launch in the heat of the day against my better judgement. Thirty minutes into the flight, I am tired of getting thrown around in the washing machine air, and call it quits. Mark follows suit, glad to be back on the ground.
One more quick flight at Torrey Pines, over the cliff, and down to naked beach. Pack up the glider, get something to eat, then we are outta here.
Now here I sit at 37,000 feet staring into the darkness. What a great day flying different sites here in southern California, with a great friend. I am already looking forward to coming back to here soon, perhaps under better flying conditions.