We will not be accepting new students until we have resolved a legal problem/threat. There are a pair of issues. They are summed up in "Liability" but not as would be assumed.
The (former) USHGA has passed a mandate that all instructors have liability insurance (see update). This virtually guarantees an assault by the scum suckers who thrive on injuries - real or imagined. Previously, students would sign a waiver that showed that they understood that they and they alone were responsible for what happened to them. We had no insurance so it somebody wanted to sue us, we would fight and probably nobody would get anything except bills so almost no lawyer will take the case on contingency.
Insurance virtually guarantees a lawyer money from filing a suit. The insurance company will settle for something just to make the suit go away. Lawyer gets paid. It is happy. We therefore refuse to get insurance as all it insures is that we will ultimately get sued.
What is needed is legislation that protects land owners and people like hang gliding instructors from attack unless there is some form of gross negligence.
Until we can figure out a way to handle that threat, we will be busy fulfilling our commitments to pilots already signed up for courses and getting some good airtime ourselves.
With our regrets,
Ben and Alegra Davidson
Should you wish to contact us about the current status of the issue you can
use this link
Put "hang gliding instruction update" as subject.
Hang Gliding Instruction
Lesson Options eff. 01/01/05
(All hang gliding equipment is supplied except for your mind and body but if you have a favorite helmet, bring it)
4 Lesson course --$400.00
First day: Ground school, simulator work, glider setup, ground handling
and flying as conditions permit. Remaining days, Flying and concurrent ground
school in preparation for the USHGA Hang 1 test. Some additional work in the
flight simulator may be done to help develop pilot habits and skills.
$300.00 of the course fee can be applied to a Spectrum course within 30 days
of the pilot's first lesson.
(4 Lesson Course included w/ the purchase of a new
Falcon but can not be credited to other course fees)
12 to 30+ lessons-- as many as it takes to get you off a mountain (with a
Hang 2 rating) flying a state-of-the-art Wills Wing hang glider. Most of your
work will be flying on our training hills, building confidence in your skill
by performing progressively more demanding tasks. Simulator work will be done
to help teach approaches improve pilot comfort in the glider and teach basic
thermaling technique. Upon completion of the course you, the pilot, have a
$300.00 credit toward the purchase, from Tek Flight Products of a new Wills Wing
hang glider. The Wills "Falcon" can help a new hang glider pilot get more
air-time more quickly and easily. while offering the advanced pilot superb
handling in rough conditions.
Ok, you have flown from a major mountain and WOW!!!!! it
was great. Where do we go from here? You undoubtedly have your own glider and
harness but you are really not ready for all that awaits you. Our help for new
pilots or for any pilot is always available. No cost, no real obligation except
to pass on what you have learned and to fly safely. We
won't launch a new pilot without having radio contact. Why? So that we can warn
of the impending "unexpected". So here you are, ready for more flying and we'll
help but you must have your own radio and our help will be on a strictly
informal basis. It works out well most of the time. The exceptions are when we
are all tied up here teaching or when we go flying and the conditions are not
good for you but good for us. If we are here teaching, we often have instructors
out on the mountain who will help you if schedules work out BUT it would not be fair
to have them take time away from their flying day without offering something in
return and so you either wait until there is no conflict in schedules or--
The Spectrum + $1,500.00
All of the previous and we'll even supply the radios if
we have to and one of our instructors will get you off the mountain for your
first 10 flights, speeding your growth, improving your airtime and giving you a
solid push towards your H-3 rating. There still may be a schedule conflict but
we will work to make "it" happen.
Payment for the desired course MUST be made at the end
of the first day. All equipment is supplied up through the first mountain
flight. Unless otherwise agreed, courses must be completed within 12 months.
Our goal is to create hang glider pilots (who have as their own goal, the
desire to fly)-- who will work as hard as necessary to gain the skills necessary
so that they too, can work that thermal and, almost magically, watch clouds
start to form below them.
Although physical strength is not a prime requirement, (some of our best
students have weighed about 100 lbs.) willingness to work both physically and
mentally during the learning process is a necessity. Hang Gliding offers rewards
that are beyond description.
Hang glider pilots are a unique breed that control their own destiny. If that
scares you, think for a moment about how few places you have where what happens
to you is strictly up to you. There is however, no instant, mindless
gratification. You don't learn to deal with nature in all of its extremes
without step-by-step progression and work. A hang glider pilot establishes the
ultimate partnership with nature.