Wanafly Airsports offer you or your gift recipient the chance to take to the skies with an experienced pilot for this flight of a lifetime. This is the perfect opportunity to feel the exhilarating, freedom offered by these superbly maneuverable machines. Fly a flex or fixed wing microlight, these amazing machines are a sensational way to fly, they also offer a stable, safe and recognised form of travel. An amazing chance to soar like a bird and view the world from a different angle! The choices include:
|The group experience flight – 4 to 12 people who take a group safety briefing and a 15 minute flight experience each. Great for stag/hen parties, social groups or just a group of friends!||€35 each|
|The gift experience - A 30 or 60 minute flight experience. With safety briefing and a chance to take the controls if you would like||€65/€100|
|The Pilot experience - Offers you a 1 hour lesson during which you will be offered to take control of the aircraft. You will have a full briefing, debriefing and a log book will be given as a souvenir of the experience||€150|
|The Pilot taster day – The perfect gift for someone who is interested in taking there flying more seriously and possibly aiming to achieve a private pilot’s license. 2 hours of flight lessons including briefing & debriefing, log book, 1 year BMAA membership and subscription to the 'Microlight flyer magazine'. What a gift for any want to be pilot!||€250|
How can I book or purchase a gift card? Easy just call and speak to Amanda at Wanafly Airsports, she will help you make your choice, give you any advice required or answer any questions. If you are purchasing the flight experience as a gift, we can send a special card so that your loved one will open a card on the special day, all they need do then is to call and book a time and date. On the morning of the flight we ask for you to call so that a weather check can be made. The gift cards are usable for 12 months so plenty of time to make your choice!
Restrictions The sport of microlighting is weather dependant and although we can fly in rain, and reasonably windy conditions, we really want you to enjoy your experience so we may ask you to wait for calmer conditions, hence the weather check call on your flight day. You need to be in good health and a weight restriction of 110kg exists for regulation and safety reasons. No age restrictions apply.
The choice of machine type This is totally up to you! We have an open cockpit flex wing microlight called a Quik, this form of flying is classed as raw root flying. You wear a helmet and flying suit provided by us, and you sit in tandem behind the pilot. Then we have the closed cockpit fixed wing microlight called the Skyranger, this is just like a small 2 seater plane, with stick and rudder controls. Both can travel up to 100 miles per hour and we normally fly at 2000ft – 3000ft. Just sit back and enjoy!
Contact Dave or Amanda Lord, La Courandiere, Azat le Ris 87360
Tel : 0555 602112
Soaring into the sixties - Diary of a test flight - February 2005
The countryside has always given me pleasure, from the primrose clothed banks on the farm where I grew up, through the craggy slopes of Snowdonia to the gentle grassy wolds of East Yorkshire, where I now live.
One day, as if from nowhere, there came a desire to enjoy the openness and the scenery from the sky, like a bird. Would a microlight flight fulfil that desire? Would a microlight flight be possible? In a half-joking, light-hearted way I mentioned this to my husband as a possible way of celebrating my sixtieth birthday. ‘Hm, I don’t know where they do that sort of thing around here’, was his non-committal response.
A few days later the voucher arrived in the post! I could arrange a flight, at any time during the year, from Crosland Moor Airfield near Huddersfield.
What we hadn’t realised was just how weather sensitive microlight flying could be. David, my instructor-to-be, stressed from the first conversation that he would not take first-timers out in windy or wet conditions, when the flight could be turbulent and the visibility poor. Not only did he wish a new student to enjoy the experience and the countryside, he also needed calm conditions to find out whether a person was a ‘kicker or screamer’!
After a couple of disappointments when the weather in East Yorkshire seemed near perfect but the winds 800 feet up on Crosland Moor were excessive, we finally made the flight on a bright February day. For me the conditions couldn’t have been better. Snow still covered the high ground. The sun was bright but there were enough clouds of various shapes, sizes and shades to make the sky interesting.
‘Wear several layers of clothing, rather than one thick sweater’, David had advised. ‘If you have a sturdy pair of walking boots, wear those as well. We’ll provide you with a flying suit and helmet.’
Getting into the flying suit was tricky. In films, we only ever see people wearing the suits looking well-protected and ready for action. We don’t see James Bond struggling with this jigsaw-like garment! As I was already wearing five layers of clothing, mobility was cumbersome. However, with help from my husband I was eventually zipped into this very cosy, padded suit: Michelin Woman waddled forth.
First came the briefing from David: an explanation of how the machine worked; a description of the manoeuvres that would be necessary to take off, gain height, turn, bank and so on. I have to confess that much of the technical stuff was lost on me but I did get the gist of what he was saying ... enough to know what I needed to do to be prepared and keep safe.
As we walked out to the microlight, I felt elated, like a child about to experience a long anticipated treat. I didn’t expect to be a ‘kicker or a screamer’. The openness of the machine appealed to me and I wanted to enjoy every minute of my time in the air. Once I was belted in, it was time to don the headset for the intercom, which was integral with the helmet.
My wings were up above me. At my tail the propeller whirred into action. We taxied slowly across the grassy runway and then as smoothly and gracefully as a bird, we soared into the wintry sky. As we left the ground, a real thrill coursed through my veins, I felt exhilarated. We circled above the airfield and travelled south above Holmfirth, on the edge of the High Peak. Over the high ground, the slopes and contours were highlighted by the snow, a real winter wonderland. In the distance was a great whiteness where land and sky merged into a white blanket ... a snowstorm! Fortunately it stayed in the distance.
Our first ‘destination’ was a tall tower, which could just be seen in the distance. The tower on Emley Moor is a telecommunications mast ... decorated with satellite dishes of various shades and sizes. We could see them quite clearly as we flew nearer.
On approach, we banked to the left. This was the first (and only) time that I felt vulnerable. Momentarily my stomach lurched as it did on a childhood funfair ride. However, here there was no noisy rattle of wheel on rail, no other cars trundling up and down full of screaming youngsters. Here was peace and a bird’s eye view of the fascinating earth below. I wanted to commit to memory every dwelling, every tree, the shapes of the fields, the lines of the hedges and the dry-stone walls. I wanted my ‘inward eye’ to record the colours, the shadows and the ethereal light.
After about half an hour in the air we had to return to base to fix my flying suit, which had become slightly unzipped. (My ‘dresser’ obviously hadn’t paid enough attention to detail!)
Soon we were off again. The exhilaration of lift-off sent my spirits soaring. This time we headed north, over Scammonden Dam and the M62, at 100 miles an hour! Below us the Pennines sparkled in the winter sunshine. The snow covered landscape was interspersed with dark reservoirs. As we went higher, they looked like lakes. We could have been flying over Austria.
When we set off for the second time, David had asked which experience I enjoyed the most: landing or taking off. ‘Taking off’, I replied without any hesitation. ‘Right we’ll make for another airfield and we’ll make a low approach but go round in stead of landing’, he explained. The other airfield was near to Ovenden Moor wind farm.
The graceful windmills appeared to be ‘at one’ with the snowy landscape. Controversial they may be, but on this occasion they added to the interest of the experience. We approached the airfield at speed (90 miles an hour to be exact!) and without touching the ground, we zoomed up into the air again ... wonderful ... better than any fairground ride!
On the return trip to Crosland Moor, we dropped height. There was some buffeting of the machine. David explained about the thermals: the warm air rising from the earth to meet the colder air. I learnt a little about the clouds, too, and how to begin to ‘read’ the sky.
Our first approach to the landing site was another thrilling low approach ... to startle and impress my husband! We then circled round over the edge of Blackmoorfoot Reservoir ready for the landing. Way down below us, flocks of birds swooped and circled over the deep dark water. Just thinking aloud I said, ‘I can’t quite make out what kind of birds they are.’ Down we swooped, just low enough to confirm that they were gulls.
We banked round again low over the patchwork of green and white fields, piped with the grey stone walls, over the deep sandy quarry, to touch down gently on Crosland Moor.
As I stepped from the plane, removed my helmet and shook my hair free, I felt more glowing and bright, more alive than I had done for a long time. This was a truly memorable beginning to the sixties!
If you’re looking for something to add zest to your mature years ... take a microlight flight!