It has been a couple of weeks since I last updated the news coming out of Paradise Hang Gliding. We certainly have been busy, although not necessarily with flying activities.
It is no secret that the weather in south FL has been quite windy for the last week or so. We regularly monitor the sea conditions via several weather reporting buoys and the flight conditions via several internet-based aviation weather reporting & forecasting sites. To put it bluntly, last week just plain blew (I mean the wind).
We had a great boatload of intrepid adventurers from Colorado, Texas, and Oklahoma, who were staying at the Naples Bay Resort, Scheduled for March 23. (thanks Marilyn…!) Unfortunately, on that day, the winds at Big Carlos Pass, as reported by the data buoy there, were steady at 15 mph, gusting to 25-31 mph. The forecast was for the winds to diminish late in the afternoon, so we went ahead with meeting our group and going out to sea.
Actually, the wind was not bad at all for flying a tandem hang glider, but the sea conditions were pushing the marginal side. An unexpected onset of steady 2′ swells from the south, coupled with the obvious chop from the strong easterlies, prompted a heart-to heart between myself and Capt. Travis. The seas were lumpy, to say the least, with no particular pattern to the waves as one may normally expect. We decided to pull the plug on the flying activities.
The unexpected bonus was that, as we were heading back in, Capt. Travis spotted a couple of dolphins ahead, in the perfect position to lure into our wake for some dolphin stunts and photos. Slowing the boat and putting the trim position in the full up position, to make a great big wake worked perfectly, within moments the big mammals were cavorting in our wake, jumping high out of the water and the splashing into the water on their sides, obviously playing. They stayed with us for at least a mile, and about 10 minutes worth. The girls from Colorado, one of whom was a Birthday Girl, were taking plenty of pictures. For Sarah M., that had to be the most awesome birthday surprise gift ever.One their photos now appears on our “About” page, please check it out.
In the meantime, I have had the boat out of the water for some work, and had some great looking lettering put on the sides. We have been missing out on plenty of business from other boaters who watch us go by, mouths agape, wondering if we are for hire, not sure if their eyes are lying. I hope that now it will be very obvious.