Gliding is all about flight in relatively small, light non-powered aircraft. These usually have a single seat for the pilot although two-seat gliders are used for training. There is an enormous range of gliders, all with different characteristics. Today, gliders have reached an incredible level of sophistication and are usually constructed from glass-fibre, often using carbon fibre and other exotic materials to reduce weight. Until the early '70s gliders were made from a wooden or metal framework with a fabric covering. These may sound rather flimsy, but this is not the case, they are incredibly strong. Most gliders can achieve speeds in excess of 100mph, some approaching 200mph.
Although not a very practical proposition for going from A to B, gliding presents the pilot with a challenge on each and every flight. If the conditions are suitable it is possible to find air in the atmosphere that is rising and this can be used to gain height. With extra height it is possible to stay aloft as long as there is daylight, flights of over five hours are not uncommon. Extra height also allows a pilot to travel across country, usually in search of more or better rising air. Flights of many hundreds of kilometres are possible, even in Britain where the conditions are not exceptional. Some of the biggest world record distances for glider flights, set in the Andes, are in excess of 3000km.
But can I do it? Yes, just about anyone can learn to fly a glider (ok, there are some minor limitations). It's often said that it's no more difficult than driving a car, which is true except that whereas driving doesn't often call for a great deal of thought, the atmosphere is ever changing and so requires constant assessment to safely get the best from the conditions on offer.
This is only a brief introduction to what gliding is all about. The best way to find out what it's really like is to come and give it a go.
If you are not sure if gliding is for you, the answer is a Trial Flight to see what you think. If you enjoyed it the next logical step is to trade in your Trial Flight and purchase a Starter Pack. This will give you the opportunity to see who we are and what we do in depth and if you really enjoy the sport. From here you can take out annual membership. If you know gliding is for you go straight for annual membership.
There are various routes into gliding with The Lakes Gliding Club
Buy a Voucher for £80 which will give you one flight with 3 months membership, better deal for Juniors
Buy a Starter Package for £250 which will give you six flights with 3 months membership and more, better deal for Juniors
Ask us about special, better value and reduced charges for Juniors/Students and those under 18 years of age
Come and join us and fly at annual member rates, gliding is fun
At the Lakes Gliding Club we can provide training for you to experience "probably the best thing you can do with your clothes on…" At least we all think so!!
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