The Journey to where we are today began for me back in August of 1992. My brother Stu had seen a friend's paraplane, and wanted to fly it. He was told that he would need to go through the training course before he could fly it, and the closest training to us was located just north of Santa Barbara, at Santa Ynez airport. Stu told me about his flight in this funny looking contraption, and I thought that if my younger brother could do it, so could I.
I took vacation & we both went up there, me for my 1st flight, & Stu, to fly again. I was told that the flight would be solo, and I questioned this. Stu told me that it was easy & that I would have a blast. I said OK.
We got to the airport in the morning, and since this was to be my 1st flight, I was told that I would need to watch a video, read a short flight manual, fill out some paperwork & take a short test. Test I said?? (I hate tests) Well, I read the flight manual and watched the video, showing how the paraplane flew. Looked cool to me. Then, the 2nd part of the video came on. First thing I heard was reveille, like they blew when I was in the army to wake you up before anyone has any business being up. Then I watched Mr. Lawyer, who went thru the next section of the paperwork, a paragraph at a time, having you initial each paragraph as you went thru it. This was the waiver. It sure got your attention, made me think, what has my little brother gotten me into now. I signed it, took the test, and then took the papers to the instructor, John Hall of Coastal Flight, Inc. When he was done with the student he was working with, he reviewed it to make sure I had crossed all my T's & dotted the I's. We then went to the Paraplane, where I looked it over carefully, although I had no clue what I was looking for at the time. Stu was there with me, & assured me that everything was in order, so I followed John Hall's instructions, and sat in the seat. I was then given a very through pre-flight briefing, (which, with a few changes & updates, we still do today). Then I put on the communications helmet, strapped in & John gave each engine's pull starts a few pulls, & both engines came to life. They were twin 15 HP solo engines, which sounded very different from the powerful engines we use today. (they sounded like bigger than normal lawn mower engines) John made sure I could hear him, I waived that I could, since it was only one way. He talks, I listen.
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