Other Sites

Bridge Hill

GPS Coordinates: -43.156, 171.717

Wind Direction: E-SE


Minimum Pilot Rating: PG2 / HG Advanced

 

Access: From SH73 turn off onto the access road to the environmental education centre. Follow this track until it reaches the first saddle.

 

Parking: Park off the track in the saddle or for serious 4WD vehicles you can drive up to Bridge Hill.

 

Take-off: Faces east to southeast. There is a generous amount of room for several gliders.

 

Landing: Next to SH73 just opposite the turnoff for the access road. Be very careful of multiple adjacent power lines to this landing area. If you are not comfortable with the close proximity, you can choose a landing spot west of SH73.

 

Flying: Bridge Hill take-off is only a 100 m above the landing and does not have much potential for XC. Sometimes you may find it soarable if the wind is on or if your timing is right you may catch the convergence created by the incoming NE sea breeze.

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Normally you would only fly this site if there is a soarable wind on the face or you can’t be bothered to walk up Helicopter hill or drive to Mt Cheeseman.

 

Helicopter Hill

GPS Coordinates: -43.140, 171.729

Wind Direction: Light Winds only

 

Minimum Pilot Rating: PG2 / HG Advanced

 

Access: Turn off SH73 onto the Craigieburn Ski Field access road.

 

Parking: Approximately 1 km from SH73 on the ski field access road you will see a walking track starting from here. There is enough room for 2-3 vehicles to park on the side of the track.

 

Take-off: Put your walking shoes on. Follow the walking track to Lyndon Saddle then turn left and walk up to Helicopter Hill. It is a steep climb so pace yourself. Once at the top of the hill take-off is the SE face. There is plenty of room.

 

Landing: Bottom Landing is right next to SH73 close to where you turned off onto the ski field road. Be careful to avoid the powerlines that run through the landing area.

 

Flying: Helicopter Hill is an old site that was used before it became easier to access Cheeseman. Helicopter Hill is a thermic site (you can get thermals triggering from take-off). If you manage to thermal up from Helicopter Hill the flying advice is the same as for Cheeseman.

 

Be careful not to dive off on a glide towards Lake Pearson if you are low. SH73 passes through a gorge and there are no landing options.

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Magic Mountain

GPS Coordinates: -44.454, 169.745

Minimum Pilot Rating: PG2 / HG Advanced

 

Wind Direction/Access/Parking/Landing/Flying: Contact Bill Degan for details on 033266411 or 0212472676.

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Round Top

GPS Coordinates: -43.491, 171.707

Wind Direction: Light Winds (Take-off faces E-SE)

 

Minimum Pilot Rating: PG2 / HG Advanced

 

Access: From Windwhistle, follow Coleridge road until you reach Long Spur farm. The access track through Long Spur farm is owned by Gerald (ph: 03 3186802).

 

You must contact him or his son (0274444227) to seek prior permission.

Temporary site closure can be expected in spring due to lambing.

There is a Y junction about 2 km into the farm where you need to veer right to get to take-off; this is not visible on Google Maps. The access track should only be used by 4WD vehicles to minimise damage to the track and lift sharing should be used to minimise disruption to the farm.

Take-off is actually owned by another farmer, Gavin King. You will also need to contact him to seek permission to use take-off - 0273186938. Please call and only text message if he doesn’t pick up or respond to voice mail.

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Parking: There is plenty of parking at Round Top (at take-off). It’s a good idea to leave a vehicle at LZ1 or LZ2.

Take-off: You can take-off from above the transmitting tower or a slightly better area is a short 50 m walk lower down to where the hill has less of a sharp edge.

Landing: You can land straight in front of you (half way down the hill) and walk back up. This will save a retrieve if you are intending to fly again.

There are plenty of paddocks to land in. Avoid ones with livestock and horses. LZ1 is the closest but has power lines running through it. LZ2 is a safer option but you will need some altitude before you can reach it from take-off.

Flying: Despite its location, it can prove to be thermic and because it is still on the Canterbury Plains you can achieve good terrain clearance for long glides.

The only drawback is that the reason the track is there is to service high power transmitters. We are not sure of the hazard of flying in front of these yet, but it can’t be good for you.

 

Upper Cass

GPS Coordinates: -43.588, 172.726

 

Wind Direction: SW (Light winds)

Minimum Pilot Rating: PG2 / HG Advanced

 

Access: There is no current vehicle access due to the closure of Summit Road. Walking access is from the gondola or the start of the road closure at the top of the Rapaki track.

 

Take-off: From close to the walking track on the gently sloping tussock on the SW face.

 

Landing: Bottom landing is at the Lyttelton sports fields at Naval point. Top landing is also possible if soaring.

 

Flying: Generally a light wind site, though it is possible to soar the SW facing ridge immediately south of take-off.

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