- Is a glider ride safe?
Anything that moves can go bump! Glider flying is so safe that the FAA allows 14 year olds
to solo sailplanes.
All flights are flown by FAA Certified Commercial pilots. It is extremely safe since the sailplane carries no fuel or heavy engine, and is designed to land slowly in unimproved fields. Also, the sailplane is built stronger than most small aircraft! Slow speeds, short landings, nothing volatile and strength make this form of flying one of the safest.
There is more of a chance for trouble in your car on the way to the gliderport
than there is once you are in the glider. Drive Safely.
- How high can we fly in a glider?
Gliders have flown higher than 50,000 feet! On one of our glider rides we
will not get that high. The tow plane will take us to about 3000 Feet. If
the weather is working with us and generating updrafts (lift) we may go as high
as 5000-7000 feet.
- Do you fly gliders or sailplanes?
Technically speaking, we fly sailplanes but the terms gilder and sailplane are often interchanged. We think of a "glider" as having a glide ration of less than 20:1. This means for every foot that it goes down, it goes 20 feet forward. There are sailplanes with glide ratios of over 60:1.
- How does a glider get into the air?
The sailplane is towed into the air by a powered aircraft on the end of
a 200 foot tow
rope. When the pilot of the glider reaches the altitude he/she wants,
they release the tow rope. The tow rope returns behind the tow plane.
Usually, the glider releases in lift and works up higher. If there is no lift,
the glider glides back to the airport.
- How long does the glider ride last?
On a day with no lift a 3000 foot tow will yeild about a 20 minute flight time. If there is lift and there is no flight reserved right after yours the flight
could could be longer, after all our pilots love to fly!
- Are there any weight restrictions for a glider ride?
Our 2 seat glider has a maximum passenger weight limit of 220 lbs. Our 3 seat
glider has a passenger weight limit of 330 lbs.
- When is the best time for a glider ride?
Anytime is a great time! We fly all year weather permiting. Nothing matches a
sunset flight for beauty.
- How much does a glider ride cost?
A glider ride for one is $109 and a ride for two in our bigger ship is $198.
- Should I tip the pilot and or ground crew?
Money is not the reason our pilots are here, however if you feel they did a great job and would like to tip, then by all means please do. Tips are not expected but they are very appreciated. It feels very good when someone gives us a tip!
The ground crew is consists of our student pilots and private pilots that keep
their gliders at the airport. They are unpaid and assist because of their love
for the sport. We know at least one of them loves rootbeer floats
from the Runway Cafe!