Episode 139- Rico Chandra and developing Superpowers

Rico enjoying a magic day in the Alps

Rico Chandra is a Swiss pilot and musician who started flying 28 years ago. He’s recently popped up at the top of XContest and this past August he completed a 1,000 km solo vol biv across the Alps from Zurich to Slovenia. Rico has developed some really fantastic ground rules for keeping it between the lines when flying in his long accident-free history. In this episode we talk about his “superpower” that we should all develop ourselves; appropriate (and inappropriate) gear for a bivvy; preventing procedural mistakes by developing good processes; managing resources; necessary preparation before departure; his “hierarchy of 5 types of bad outcomes”; how we can develop skills to remove peer pressure; and his “rules of thumb” that help define the line when it comes to making decisions. I really enjoyed this conversation and hope you do too!

Some fun links:

  • Vlog of Rico’s trip:


The journal entries include links to the xcontest tracks & descriptions of each day’s the route

  • Rico’s blog is hosted on paraworld’s website


Includes packing list (including the weight of each item)

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Show Notes: 

From Rico:

I did some serious analyzing during and after my volbiv trip in August (1000 km to Slovenia) that might be of interest to your audience, for example:

Mistakes I made: A lot of them were procedural and can be prevented by good processes. For example, pedantically checking I didn’t leave anything behind every time I set down my pack, no exceptions. Or managing water & power resources. Or installing maps before running out of cell phone coverage.

Also learned from mistakes in equipment choice.

I also set up a hierarchy for 5 types of outcomes of bad decisions, ranging from getting hurt (avoidance has highest priority) to looking bad (committed to not giving this any weight at all).

Also, and this relates not just to vol biv but free flying in general, I work with a set of “rules of thumb” that help me assess where to draw the line in my decision making. I’ve been keeping these “rules of thumb” as hypotheses and keep vetting them with every new experience. I have a rule of thumb how far to hike up before launching on a volbiv trip. I’ve also decided to discard some earlier hypotheses in the past, like “you’ll always find some place to land somehow.”


Mentioned in the Show:

Matt Scutter, SkySight, Eric Bader, Tim Pentreath, Josh Cohn


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Speaker 0 (0s): It must be a scam that I'm thinking it must be for real, because now I can feel that in mind. It's not my, it's not my time to wonder why.

Speaker 1 (36s): Hi there, everybody welcome to another episode of the Cloudbase Mayhem I haven't talked to him about our subscription model and how that all works in supporting the show at the top of the show. And quite some time we have at, at the end all the time, and I'm sure many of you get to that point and have heard and move on. So I thought I'd drop this in at the top, just as a reminder of how this all happens at the Cloudbase Mayhem we rely on you rather than sponsors to make all this work. I think digital media, these days is mostly supported through sponsors and ads and that kind of thing.

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He takes you through that whole platform. It is really powerful. They're doing some wonderful things there at sky site. And I think this will become if it's not one of your go-tos right now for whether it will be after watching this. So yeah, reach out, thank you so much for your support. And it really does make this job a lot easier and it makes me smile. And let me know if you've got suggestions for the show, take this very seriously. We are quite backlog with suggestions, of course, but I, I do get to them.

I do reach out. We've got tons in the can right now. I've got shows. That'll take us all the way through the exhale. So we're well set up there, but I'm enjoying it. I enjoy your comments and your suggestions and your emails. And I love of course, hearing from all of you who told me that the, the show is either saved your life or kept you from having an accident or just made you a better pilot. That's why we're doing it. That's very exciting. Top of the show tip this week comes from Josh Cohn enjoy.

Speaker 2 (4m 38s): So we've got two questions from Eric Bader. The first one is when thermally, if you follow up at the bank, is it better to crank a steep turn and get back to the thermal quickly or carve a nice turn? How would your answer be different on the Windward side? So the main thing I think it depends on is how steep the lift gradient is at the edge of the thermal. So if it's pretty smooth transition then yeah, carbonized tern. And also if its kind of like a tropical sort of conditions, you'll often just need to do a really flat, smooth turn to not, to not have to still be growing up, especially if you're a low.

Whereas if it's a, you know, a well-defined tight, strong core, then crank it around. And then in terms of the Windward side, yeah. Typically, typically, if there is significant wins, the core on the Windward side is more well-defined you pretty much want to, like as soon as you start hitting that Windward edge, you want to turn a pretty quickly to, to not totally fall out, but it's often not. It's often not super stiff, not super Sankey on that side either.

So whereas on the downward side of it can often be more turbulent in and Sankey. So I don't know. You want to avoid falling out either side, I guess. All right. Second question. When a spiral dive is the drug street better than tucking feet under the harness and spreading the idea is to use the pod as a drug, it was a better, is it a lot better? Obviously the drug is not free is the crotch. It is it worth it? So I had a drug shoot for a bit and I just never got around to using it. And then I asked the guy and like was looking for a place to put it in my harness and I asked the designer of it, whereas he kept his and he was like, Oh, I don't use one.

So I don't know. It, it seems like they'd do a good job of making the spirals more comfortable. I don't think using the pod probably works as well for that. Partly because you have to sit up, which changes your whole dynamics in a harness, but I haven't really tested that. So I don't know. Thanks, sir.

Speaker 1 (6m 48s): Okay. Okay. Enjoyed that. Josh cool advice. My guest today is Rico Chandra was pilot who embarked on a thousand K solo vole bivvy last year, this was his first bivvy. It all went swimmingly and just a, he reached out and said, Hey, I did this kind of cool thing. We should talk about it. And man, we had fun with this conversation, really interesting guy. And I had a blast with his bivvy and his approach was great.

And he also has a lot of He good takeaways, both from the bivvy, but before then on just safety and how to approach things that I really found super useful and has a bunch of kind of like guard rails and rules to keep it between the lines as Chris Santa Croce says that I think are our great. And he talks about having a superpower that I loved. And by the way, the music you heard in the opener here was produced by our guest today.

Rico please enjoy this conversation with Rico Chandra

Speaker 3 (7m 55s):

Speaker 1 (8m 5s): Rico awesome to have you on the show. Thanks for reaching out this last week. And I'm excited. You get to hear that show with Tim and it sounds like you've just been doing some really cool bivvy as well. So I'm excited to hear about what you'd learned and what you're changing and how that all went. And I guess you're in quarantine. So we've got plenty of time for this one. You just got back from South Africa. Tell me let's start there. Tell me about what you're doing down in Cape town.

Speaker 2 (8m 32s): Well, thanks for having me. Hi. I was, I was in Cape town for three weeks, almost four weeks flying it's you know, from Europe, it's just that you get on the plane in the evening and you wake up in this more or less, same time zone in the summer. So I'm not, I don't really like the, so that was down there

Speaker 4 (8m 56s): At cutting and flying and enjoying good food. Not too much wine. They have a pretty serious lockdown, absolute prohibition of alcohol.

Speaker 5 (9m 7s): That's interesting that he heard that one. Yeah, it's funny. Oh, this thing's just so different. Everywhere you go. Yeah.

Speaker 4 (9m 14s): It keeps their hospitals less full because they have a lot of alcohol related.

Speaker 5 (9m 20s): Oh that was of course. Yeah. Right. How's the flying. I, you know,

Speaker 4 (9m 27s): Beautiful. But the Cape, it freaks me out then in terms of flying I've, I've, it's super strong and windy. I think, I think if you want to, I think what you have to do there is just go see where his cross country tried to do records that like to go for a small cross, like 50 K's a hundred Ks. That's a, it's just, you know, a scary with the wind. There is a lot of wind, you know, Seabreeze that cuts in and it's, I'm always sort of freaked out to them,

Speaker 5 (10m 4s): Right? Yeah. And then you get in the water, you're going to be freaked out about the sharks. I've spent quite a bit of time. That way.

Speaker 4 (10m 10s): I'm, I'm cool with that. The shark anxiety sort of went away.

Speaker 5 (10m 16s): Nice. Nice. So, Hey, for those who are listening, who don't know you lets give a real brief of your background. When did you get into flying and what brought you to and before we know how much experience do you have?

Speaker 4 (10m 32s): I started flying 28 years ago and made it through these 28 years without, without injury. I dabbled in, in comps. Gosh, in the, in the late nineties stopped doing that. Cause I'm, I'm claustrophobic, claustrophobic. I can and can't deal with or the people getting close to me, it drives me nuts.

Speaker 5 (11m 1s): So I've

Speaker 4 (11m 1s): Been flying XC mainly since then. I wasn't in the higher ranks of X contest until until 2020, I guess there is something to be said for the lockdown and all the other stuff going away. I have time to fly and he didn't have to worry about, do I go out tonight and to have a few drinks with friends and get home late or do I go flying? It was sort of clear this year. So, so the 2020 was the first year where I ended up in the high ranks.

It was the next day.

Speaker 5 (11m 36s): And what do you, what wing do you fly and where is home?

Speaker 4 (11m 40s): I fly as you know, home is Zurich Switzerland. I used to travel a lot for work to Washington DC, but now Zurich

Speaker 5 (11m 51s): And once you, what is your work?

Speaker 4 (11m 54s): I, we started to gather with a bunch of friends and we started a company 13 years ago, then the security industry, sewing border monitoring systems to government and been, been doing that ever since.

Speaker 5 (12m 14s): And it sounds like Covitz has some kind of unexpected benefits for you and what what's it been like for you the last kind of nine, 10 months?

Speaker 4 (12m 23s): Great. I I'm, I tend to be someone who is fidgety and running all over the place and trying to do 10 things at once. And for me, I mean, I, I'm sorry for all the people who got sick and then of course, or hats you wear has consequences. But for me it was, you know, calm, a calm time and that really at a, you know, a great 2020 and the flying has been absolutely fantastic.

We had great weather you're in Switzerland and, and had a couple of a really nice flights. I had my Volvo trip in August. So this has been one of the better years for me.

Speaker 5 (13m 10s): Yeah. Tell me about this full bivvy, you thousand K or something. Where'd you start where G and how long it takes to get into that?

Speaker 4 (13m 19s): It took almost, I, I took the month of August off, was on the road or on the, on the track for about 25 days started in Zurich Switzerland. My plan was to go East Slovenia. It was the original goal. It didn't go exactly. According to plan, like when I started the weather was, you know, foul and, and, and one weekend to the trip, I was, you know, not, not, not very far from home and at the same time, Slovenia Switzerland on the, on the, on the quarantine list.

And I'm like, you couldn't enter the country. So I'm like, what do I do now? And, and, and instead of going East and one West made it to the fish, had a great flight there, which sorta gave me the inspiration to head to East again. And then, and then I did, In go all the way to, to Slovenia to, to be on a more or less, or where are the airspace of nuclei all in the store.

Speaker 5 (14m 36s): Nice. What was the kind of style of the trip? Did you have any rules or did you have any, or was it just kind of winging it?

Speaker 4 (14m 45s): I thought about the rules and, you know, I thought about, yeah, like, do that take, do that, take cars. Do I, do I, do I hitchhike? Do I sleep in tents? Do I sleep in hotels and night? I figured it out. I'm going to go to a mainly out of my own, you know, on my, you know, walking and, and flying. I'm not going to hit check. I'm not going to take the train, but if there's something, you know, a cable car or some trans means of transportation going up to that launch, that I want to go anywhere and anyway, I'm going to take it.

And that's kind of how I did it in terms of where you solo. Yeah. I was solo. My, my girlfriend came to visit me on, on a couple of weekends, which was nice. Cool. I took a long in a tent until I lost the 10 poles. And

Speaker 5 (15m 41s): Did you, did you leave him behind? Yeah.

Speaker 4 (15m 46s): You know, one campsite one morning. I, I, I just, I guess I didn't pack them and, and,

Speaker 5 (15m 53s): And, and then he had a nice term

Speaker 4 (15m 56s): Kind of stupid write with the 10th without tentpoles and, and I, I, I traded that against a bivvy bag, but I didn't, you know, I, I, I found out pretty quickly that I sleep much better and hotels. Aye, aye, aye. The tent or the bivvy baby bag was just to not have to worry about anything. I decided I'm going to fly the way I want to fly and, and, and not worry about where I'm going to sleep until I'm on the ground.

And if I find a hotel or, you know, a forum or some place where I can sleep great. And if not all asleep outside, it's just more comfortable. If you've got to a hotel room and, and, and charging up your equipment, is there is something to be said for that also, because I didn't take long any solar panels or, or, or the light or quick chargers. So that was quite happy in, in the Alps. There is always some place to stay.

Speaker 5 (17m 5s): So were you kind of, was your approach just launch flat as far as you could, and then deal then figured it out? You know, he didn't, he didn't have any kind of, okay. I'm going to try to get here. Are there, it would just, you know, take advantage of the day. Yeah.

Speaker 4 (17m 20s): Take advantage of the day. Exactly. Cool. I have a sort of a plan for the route, which I sometimes stuck to it. And mostly didn't.

Speaker 5 (17m 30s): Did you, had you done bivvy before this, or this was this your first?

Speaker 4 (17m 34s): No, this was my first, this was my first bivvy, like 20 years ago or 30 years ago I spent, you know, maybe a night or two rapped in my wing, but I haven't done before. And, and I, you know, when I was in my twenties, I certainly wasn't keen on doing hiking with my, a wing on my back.

Speaker 5 (17m 59s): Tell me about your kit, where you find the Xeno for the bivvy to, yeah.

Speaker 4 (18m 3s): Yeah. That was definitely a mistake. I wouldn't, I wouldn't do that again, just because of the ways, the way it is the least of the problem it's in a, launching a, at a launching out a launch is where you don't want to get your line stuck. You know, you want you, or, or when you don't have, you know, if you've got slight downwind, tailwind, there's I guess this is a yellow light, would of been the perfect thing.

And I was, I tested one for some reason, I have this philosophy of you have one wing to do everything with that. So I took the, you know, I didn't want to compromise on the flying. And I took the Zenith, all of a sudden terms of packing the Xeno doesn't pack down nicely. Like the zeolite does then also landing the zeolite. You can really get into tight landing spot in a much better than what the Xenon Xeno is.

Not bad. You can, you can flap down pretty good, but I wouldn't take the Zino again and I'd go for a lighter or hiking fly wing.

Speaker 5 (19m 21s): Yeah. So just lighter, easier to manage launch and landing is you're in a pack. Yeah. What about, what about harness and other stuff that you said you didn't take solar panels or charging? What was the, what was the thought there?

Speaker 4 (19m 34s): We didn't want to be bothered. I, I, I always felt sorry for, you know, when I see a picture of solar panels hanging up on the front of the, the, the cocoon, I thought, gosh, I don't want to have stuff dangling around it. I'm not going to do that. I'm here for the flying. I'm not necessarily here to do, you know, prove to the world that I'm the world's greatest adventure sport at, you know, I'll, I'll, I'll do brake flying and then, but yeah, I didn't, I didn't want to mess with solar panels.

The harness ad was a lightness to which, which was good for that purpose. There's loads of space to, to pack stuff in, especially if we take out the protectors

Speaker 5 (20m 22s): And what were you using for instruments

Speaker 4 (20m 26s): And my, my iPhone and the fly sky high app and the exi tracer, many to the solar rustic piece. Yeah. Yeah. That's, that's a great piece of kit. I asked that I had a, an inReach with me and a fly master, a sky. What's it called? The sky track. One of these tracker things fly master.

Speaker 5 (20m 53s): Yep. Anything once you, well, tell me about the trip itself. And then I'll ask you more about kind of what you learned on the way, but, so, so you started at home and got down to fish and then turned around and started going East.

Speaker 4 (21m 7s): Exactly. Yeah, it got started it from home, spent the first five days more or less walking with the occasional Hoppe in between then had the weather started getting better as I made it to fish, got in at a decent size triangle there and then headed East via, you know, crossing from Switzerland and to Austria then across the two moods into, and to Italy then from Italy, back into, back into Australia and new year Caelian and then, or just a second Italy back into Austria or near a salient and then back into Italy, by the LOC in Australia

Speaker 5 (22m 5s): And in the corner of there.

Speaker 4 (22m 7s): Yeah. Then from end to end to end to the Slovenia across the road to pass.

Speaker 5 (22m 15s): Is that down? Is that right there at a tree glove?

Speaker 4 (22m 20s): It's it's it's it's not exactly work Creek love is there's a mountain called , which is a well-known it's I'm the first place the it's like North of Beau vets and a toll men.

Speaker 5 (22m 37s): Yeah. Gotcha. Yeah. Okay. So a little bit, a little bit further East. So you kind of, you want to, as far as he could in Australia and then, and then jump down in the Slovenia, maybe we could get a track log or a picture of a screenshot of you, of your whole rout, and we'll put it up in the show notes for, for those that aren't familiar with that area. Cause of course it was all of those names you just said. I know, cause we have spent so much time over there, but many, many Dillons that's a nice route. Beautiful. I mean, I had never flown Slovenia until this, after the last X ops went with my family until we stayed in there for about a month and Sorcha, and some of that, I can forget some of those launches, but we, you know, we'd fly down that Ridge line and then end to Italy and then keep going into Italy, which is pretty wild and then back, and it was just the most amazing out in back this gorgeous, I mean a soca river.

Speaker 4 (23m 28s): Oh, beautiful

Speaker 5 (23m 31s): It in my punch today.

Speaker 4 (23m 34s): Cool. Yeah, I thought, I thought it was, I found it really intended up. Yeah. I found it really intimidating. Slovenia you know, coming from, from, from the North, you know, high mountains, lots of wind type valleys, a there is a scratch there where he can't land them. And then also the last leg from, from total men from KU, I think Kabbalah is that you had the launch to go to where are the airspace of for our it's the place to go to Schofield loca.

That's just a stretch with, you know, Slovenia and valleys with the heavily forested and not, not generously equipped with landing sites. That was a bit edgy in the us.

Speaker 6 (24m 29s): It's a very treat. That's one of these places. I don't know if you've flown, you know, when you, when you leave Slovenia and going to Italy, when you are doing that kind of classic out in back, you, you cross Shamona and you get into a zone there where, you know, I was, I was flying with a guy Mike, who had done it in a bunch of time. If I hadn't been with somebody, I'd be like, what the hell are we doing? There's nowhere to land. We just keep going, you know, what's going on at work? You know, you're just like, Holy shit, this is deep. And I just, I know, I don't think people expect that in Europe, you know, in, in, in the ops, you, how you get in this mindset where you, you just keep pushing no matter what, cause you know, there's going to be an LZ, but man, in places like that, there's not, I mean, you can, there's those little lakes you can, you know, for sure there's trees and all the way around it.

And it's like, this is a little damned lakes where I guess you could probably burn it in. And then man, you're in for a shift of a hike and there's no rows. There is nothing down. There is no, there's no trails. There's at least that I can see from the air. But you it's a, yeah, it's a little intimidating. It's, it's weird because it's, it's like the locals just know what's going to work. And if they have the right winds in the right sun and everything that you just keep going, but you're like, man, I hope this works.

Speaker 4 (25m 41s): Yeah, for me, it was at the end of the trip. So I thought, well, you know, worse comes to worse, you know, I'll land in a tree and you know, I don't need the glider

Speaker 6 (25m 52s):

Speaker 4 (25m 56s): Is that sort of a, self-taught some of the sides of the talk I had in those days.

Speaker 6 (26m 2s): Okay. We're going to leave that in, but I don't know if that's it it's, it's like my thoughts about Monica at the race. I hate Monaco so much, but you know, Bruce, my supporter in the 2015 set at 2017, he was like, you know, you've got to stop thinking like that. Cause he hated it to me. He hates Monika and he was like, you know, this isn't really the attitude we want to have. Cause that's where you actually, you want to get,

Speaker 4 (26m 25s): You can leave it in. Cause my, my attitude as you'll see, and I'm super safety conscious and, and that's, that's some of the self-talk to deal with anxiety while flying. But, but I'm, I'm, I'm really, I'd say safety conscious and I wasn't gunning it. And I've, I've given up on the rule of thumb. There's always a place to land. If I don't see in a landing announcing or I think that I can get in, I don't go on a, a land and walk that that's one of the rules of thumb that I sorta, you know, that you'll all you can always, you'll always find a place to land I've I've given up on that.

I'm too old for that.

Speaker 6 (27m 11s): Yeah. Well, let's get into that cause that's, that's a good one. I'm more inclined towards that as well. Since my days with, well Gavin in the Rockies, you know, it was like, Ooh, ah, this is a long way as well. We should, we're going to make this In but you, you wrote, when you reached out to me about this bivvy, you wrote the, you know, there were mistakes made is there always is. And I think there is on just normal flights as well. So let's get into some of that. What did you learn? What were the takeaways?

Speaker 4 (27m 37s): Mistakes. I I'm, I'm kind of analytic about this stuff. And so I grouped the mistakes into procedural mistakes and tactical mistakes. The procedural ones fall into two categories, the forest, this is, this is, this is embarrassing. It's about losing stuff. But yeah, like losing my temp poles or losing my cap, but I noted pretty quickly if I lose and a central piece of gear that really sets me back or that's the end of the trip.


Speaker 6 (28m 11s): Yeah. It's not like you're, it's not like you're taking extraneous things on a bivvy. No, you don't, you don't have it. You don't have the extras, you know?

Speaker 4 (28m 19s): Yeah. So I got really, like, I got really pedantic about every time I got up, I like pedantically double-check did I left some like conscious, consciously check? Did I leave something behind or I consciously make sure my, like the zips of my pockets were closed, that I'm not losing stuff. And there was really only two ways to, to not lose stuff when you're, when you've unpacked somewhere and, and, and packing up and having to the next place in one is you have a checklist and the other is you make sure you never left nothing behind.

And the left, nothing behind works pretty well at it. It's a fast one, but it means you have to, first of all, when you're on packing, not be a bit mindful where you, where you unpack and, and have it sort of in a confined zone, the stuff, and then also consciously checked. And when I left, when I lost my tongue poles, it wasn't at all already started walking like 10 meters and thought, ah, should I just turn around and do a final check?

And I just said to myself, now that you've got so little gear, what's there to lose

Speaker 6 (29m 44s): The classic that we know. I had a, a, I had to learn this, the hardware the very first day of the 2015 race. And we'd actually practice this because my team knows that I'm a space cadet. And you know, you can imagine you're in, or you're in a hurry. You're in a rush. I'm trying to do everything really fast. And the first day we had a big flight landed and I just dumped everything on the grass. And then later, of course, you know, there's a missing glove. My Bluetooth earpiece was gone cause it's tiny. I didn't have it tied in. And I still have learned now with bivvy.

My first thing that comes out of the pack is to my little tarp. And I just put everything on the top of it at the end and in the race, I don't have a, a, a tarp. So in the race, it's on my jacket. So the first thing is jacket comes off and all of this stuff just get stacked onto it. Cause like you said, you'd have to make it partier procedure. You've got to be authentic about it. Are you just loose? Stuff like that? Yeah. It just because there's grass, a lot of times it's in the Alps, especially there is pretty tall grass and it's so easy to just misplace something a little even tentpoles they just, you know, they could disappear also.

Speaker 4 (30m 51s): So I like to make made a point of, you know, sharing my, when, when I'm doing my PAC and, and, and setting up to fly to carry my canopy up for more of my stuff is dumped on the ground to not be covering up, you know, spreading my glider over and stuff that I know of.

Speaker 6 (31m 11s): That's a big one, the glider, it recovers all kinds of stuff at another day. I think that first race, I think I took off one time and a drop. I had a camera, some device. I had like three things under my left behind. It was like, sorry, red bull. Can you bring me new stuff?

Speaker 4 (31m 29s): Yeah. So, so losing stuff that that's, when you can fix it by having good cross like procedures, the other procedural one where I was constantly messing up was resources management. So under the resources that I think of things like water, food, chard, you know, having your devices charged, hooking up your P to P to fly, washing your lawn. You know, I had two sets of boxer shorts to sets of, of t-shirts always, you know, sort of one clean and one blind from washing it, getting that stuff wash, but also stuff like downloading the maps and the apps before he actually run out a cell phone coverage or figuring out, you know, the, how this map app works before the day before you get up.

I was like, somewhere in the, I remember I texted you, Hey, Gavin what was, what was the app that you use for the app? Because I was, you know, my, my three map apps were not giving me what I wanted and I wasn't in the middle of somewhere in that. That's when I reached out to you on that. And thanks for four for the recommendation for Y weight to do that obviously is to practice with those apps and maps and download the stuff before getting going. It, it seems obvious, but it's just the way I was constantly getting all sorts of resource management wrong.

Speaker 6 (33m 0s): Yeah. I'm glad you brought that up because I think it's so easy to have the checklist and check them off before you go. But you know, like even the in reach, you know, it's one thing to turn it on and turn on tracking. It's another thing to use it effectively and in an emergency situation, I mean, how many people turn those on and just can't even find their Latin long to, to, you know, and, and is it in the right format to tell somebody on the other end and just little things like that. And with the, with the mapping, we always actually have training days for me before the race, even though I've used them a million times and I've used them on all of the expeditions and stuff, and I'm really familiar with Gaya and some of the other things we use, but it takes, you just got to always reorient to it unless you're using it all the time.

So if you have even a little fake, you know, a bivvy in your backyard and just fake it for a couple of hours and, and set yourself little tasks just on foot, then it really helps.

Speaker 4 (33m 58s): Yeah. Yeah, absolutely. And also the charging sequence, when you get to go to a place where you can charge your, so in what sequence do you charge your stuff? Yeah. And then, then, you know, he spent the rest of the day editing your GoPro footage and stuff like that. And there is a sequence like the resource management is to figure out what the rights sequence is to do, doing stuff there's so much, you can do it wrong on that.

Speaker 6 (34m 28s): Yes. And I would agree with you. I mean, I think that there's, you know, when you have the solar panels hanging off your cocoon stuff, you know, Ben Jordan style, I, you know, there's, there's a place for that, but there's also, you know, with the, with a decent external battery. And, you know, if you're doing a bivvy in a place like the Alps and assuming you're going to get to a hut or something that every three or four days, you really don't need a panel. And in the other thing is, you know, just with an extra battery, I think you do need the extra battery and the, you know, appropriate cables, but I've never on, on even the longest of my Bibi's have I ever needed to charge while I'm flying?

You know, there's always in a bivvy. There is so much time in a day where you're sitting around in the morning, making coffee, whatever, where, you know, a little seven or nine watt panel can go, can do a lot of good. But then if I was doing one in the Alps, I don't think I'd bring one. And I just don't think it would be necessary.

Speaker 4 (35m 26s): You want to bring a battery? Or

Speaker 6 (35m 29s): It was a panel. I bring it up. I bring a battery, always

Speaker 4 (35m 33s): Like the power back bank. And, Oh, by the way you mentioned food or you mentioned like making coffee. I didn't even, I didn't take a stove. I didn't take stuff to cook. Coz in the Alps, there is always some place to go. I had like enough food for one meal water and a couple of like power bars or whatever, but there's, there's in the out to you always, you always find a restaurant or, or a farm or something and they'll give you food.

So I didn't, I didn't want to mess with, with, with cooking, by the way in the show. Now we can also link to that. I did, I did like a, a video diary and we can link to that on YouTube. And there's a entire list of stuff that I took it.

Speaker 6 (36m 19s): Oh, great. Tell me, let's, let's move on to you. So you've got this kind of procedural stuff in resources, which is a super fast,

Speaker 4 (36m 27s): Yeah. The procedural mistakes, the tactical mistakes there, there were sorta four for kines that I may, and I mean, there's obviously a lot more, but those, I, you know, it makes no sense we're the us and them without a map. But there was for a sort of general ones, which are independent of typography. One is giving up, you know, often I, I did give up due to fear or discomfort, and that probably applies to ECC flying in general where you've, you've had enough to give up.

Speaker 6 (37m 3s): So, so you, you classify that in this, in these instances as a mistake, in other words, you were, you were kind of just over it, but it was probably definitely good enough to keep going.

Speaker 4 (37m 17s): It's a slippery slope. I mean, it is a mistake if it's due to discomfort, like if your giving up due to discomfort, because you didn't attach your pee tube or you've got cold fingers or you're freezing copy, fear, fear. It can also be mistake. You know, sometimes when you were on a walk, when you're on your own, you gets scared just because the, the, the, the rocks around you look very intimidating and you're alone.

And, and, and if there were other paragliders there, you wouldn't be, you won't be afraid. So it's kind of a mistake, but I I'd be careful at it. It's it, it isn't a bad mistake to make, but the consequences of landing to early AR you know, I started, I sort of thought, well, that's not going to tell me that I might lose time, or I might look stupid, but that's not, that's not a big deal.

Height management height management was like landing landing high, taking off launching high landing highs is sort of a no brainer. But the, oftentimes I realized I could have landed, hire the one, you know, didn't think I'd make the glide. But then I had already started gliding for the lower landing site and launching, I have this, this rule of thumb, like, you know, when you're volt, how high can fly, how high do you hike up before you launch w when, when are you high enough to, to hook a Thermo and fly my rule of thumb for that was this, this wouldn't be applicable four, four for the X Alps book for it, for myself.

If you were like recreationally flying, then my rule of thumb is I want to hike up high enough that if I bomb out, at least I can walk up another mountain and don't have to walk the same mountain. And the fact that for motivational purposes, that's like, I think that's a really good rule of thumb. Oh,

Speaker 6 (39m 32s): We have that. So you, so you would get to a place where you're like, okay, I can see it. And if I don't hook anything, I'm going to be able to glide to there. And that's going to get me to a different launch down in my course line a little ways. And it's going to be manageable energy wise.

Speaker 4 (39m 48s): Exactly. Cause there's like, there's launches you, you walk up to, and then you launch and you land, you know, and the only option you have left is to walk right up to where you want to be. And that that's not good for the motivation. Then the other tactical mistakes were a map, reading, a trust thing. The GPS reading a, you know, of my, of my iPhone.

That's not always correct or not reading the elevate, misjudging the differences in elevation on the map. That's how I did that a couple of times.

Speaker 6 (40m 31s): Are you talking while you're flying

Speaker 4 (40m 35s): Hiking? Okay. While hiking and the other, the last bullet of like tactical mistakes is I went to a rest, you know, since this wasn't right or raise therapy in a way, I think there were three, three days every week or so I'd say weather's not so great a restroom. And I think I, I regretted it all three times because the, the, the next day was even worse weather.

And, and, and so, yeah, rusting the decision to rest. I think if you can, if you can, if it's good enough to make distance, then make distance.

Speaker 6 (41m 21s): Okay. So maybe, maybe better self-assessment, you know. Okay. Well, you know, it, it, it would be nice, but I don't really need it right now. We just do, we have to be tuned into how switched on are we, is it is important

Speaker 5 (41m 34s): For sure. And bivvy takes, you know, it can take a lot out of you.

Speaker 4 (41m 38s): Yeah. Although, you know, if you, if you put in a, a rest day, then like by three o'clock in the afternoon, you've caught up on your blogs and emails and, and, and, and you've charged all your equipment, washed your clothes. And you're like, what am I doing here? So, yeah,

Speaker 5 (42m 2s): Let's move to your higher hierarchy thing. And this is cool. It's the five types of outcomes of bad decisions to talk about that.

Speaker 4 (42m 9s): So that decision is like some of them. So some of the stuff that we talked about, it's got different outcomes. And I, I grouped those into five categories, but the worst being, getting her them one step below getting heart is losing or breaking equipment. Then one step below that is discomfort, which can be like cold or rain or, or hiking, blisters, blisters that stuff.

Then the second lowest was losing time until the lowest on the hierarchy. Is that like looking bad, this is where human and I, and I'm not, you know, I, I, I did feel pressure, you know, having, having a blogging about this and not having people follow me in life tracking, there is nowhere in you. And the pressure you must must have Durham, X Alps, but, you know, bombing out.

Isn't a feeling of I'm so awesome. And, and so, but, but sort of, I, I, I He in a decisions have, have, have consequences, and those consequences fall into these five categories. And the way, the way I, the way I dealt with those categories is what, like, I absolutely don't want to get hurt. And I am really going to try to avoid losing or breaking equipment and the rest of the stuff I'm not going to worry about.

I'm not going to worry about discomfort or a hiking, because if I, if I was worried about discomfort while you shouldn't go on a bull, but anyway, I, wasn't going to worry about losing time, because one of the reasons I was doing this is sorta to have to face up to my own fear of missing out and chill. So I'm not going to worry about losing time and looking bad, like, or looking like a fool or feeling like a fool.

Like I decide to completely let go of that. And, and one thing that helps with that is, is blogging because then you feel more like a journalist, you can write about your feelings, which makes the blog more interesting for those reading it. And it gives you an excuse to, you know, to, you know, it improves your content if you're not doing well. So, so that's how I dealt with those, how I sort of grouped those things. So all I wanted to prevent was getting hurt or breaking or losing equipment.

And did you have, is, is this a good segue? Is that, is that where the rules of thumb come in? Yeah. So the rules of thumb that I have, they applied to, to flying more general. So I applied very much to both a bit, but some of it just applies to ECC flying in general. And, you know, there's a lotta questions that you don't know when you don't know when you were learning to fly.

Like when can I jump into the Lee of a mountain, or how long can I edge out? How, how long can I remain in the air when there is a, a storm brewing, when do I need to go land? And you just don't know these things, nobody teaches you. And, and, and so I, I guess I stored it out years ago, I guess, with just setting up.

So a couple of rules of thumb, like a hypothesis. And, and then I w I, I wasn't necessarily pushing all the way to, through the border, but just testing those hypotheses. So, for example, when your, one of the most common attic dangers, I think Volbeat of brains is edging out storms. Like how long do you, how long does it take you for you to say, now, this is, this is that cloud's to dark, I'm going to go land.

And, and the rule of thumb that I, that I used there is. And so it says, take this. I got a, I, I feel I have to put a disclaimer on this because I don't think you can just apply this to your own flying without having, you know, tested. It is a hypothesis for a long time before applying it. But the rule of thumb with storms is as long as there's blue sky above me, I'm still good.

So I think, I think I even learned that from someone, but you know, it, I picked it up and a habit as a hypothesis for the last 15 years. And for the last 15 years up in every time I'm a fly or the other is flat, I've been testing. Whether that hypothesis is true. Can you S K is it, is it okay to have the rule of thumb? You can fly as, as long as they're, as long as there's still a blue sky above you, you are a good, and for all I've seen so far, that little for me works pretty well.

And when it comes to, you know, the clouds are getting big or getting tall, how long do I remain in the air before I go land? So I'm not suggesting people follow these rules, but I'm suggesting it's, it's, it's worked out for me to set up rules of thumb and, and observe over years, whether those makes sense. And in one of them, I have to give up, which was, there is always going to be a place to land on.

I decided that is not true for me. There's not always a place to land. I'm going to say, I'm not going to lie. I want to see where I land before committing to a Valley than a fly into it.

Speaker 6 (48m 26s): Mm. Yeah, I would, I guess I would put the disclaimer on the blue part with a sh you know, every situation is different and you said that, but, you know, I can think of a few times, you know, certainly in the, in a desert environment, which has very, very different from the Alps, you know, we can get massive cells, a long ways away and still be a cold there. Exactly the same. It just, if you can stay in the air, you might be okay.

But if you decide, you know, that you need to land and you get hit in that Gus front, it could be a very blue where you are, but you're suddenly there. The one, the one experience I've had in the Alps that was similar to this was we were flying from fish in downtown to kind of core. And then we actually made it over and we were heading into Davos. And so down the Rhine, basically we were on the, I think we were on the North side of the Rhine heading, heading East and all day, there was a huge sell on the Italian side that would of been kind of down towards St.

Moritz, but the, on the, on the Italian side and really, really big, you know, this was one of these where it, you know, it, it went up into the upper atmosphere and it started spreading out and where we were, it was just brilliant. And it was really beautiful, but we kept, it was, I was with Bruce and we kept talking to one another and going, what do you think of that thing? Yeah. I don't know. It's getting, it's really a vertical, well, yeah, but it's at least 40 50 miles away, which is unusual to be able to even see in the, in the Alps, you don't get that tall most of the time.

And so often these cells are, are, you know, you don't even see them now that might be on the other side of the, of the, of the main spine of the Alps. And you don't even see it, but this one we could see cause it was so big and it was so tall and, but it was just brilliant. So at core, okay, let's keep going. And we got over the range and, you know, Davos is down below us and we were both like, okay, that's enough. We've, we've pressed this far enough. And we both spiraled to the ground really fast and touchdown literally about 30 seconds before the gust front hit.

So this thing had finally exploded and it started running down the valleys and we found that we got on the train and we were heading back to a fish and we found out there was, I think the Swiss open or some, some pretty big comp was he had been, you know, going that day. And two people, I believe, I think one died and another one and, and in the trees, because they got hit in that Gus runt. And so th just to, again, you know, anecdotal, but it's, you know, one of these kind of, you know, there's always a, there's always an acception.

And I think if there is a big step around, you've got to be thinking like, how, how much time, how far can I press this? We certainly pressed it a lot. And the XL piece, and there's been a bunch of them. We were like, Whoa, that was close.

Speaker 4 (51m 32s): But to be, to be clear when I'm saying blue sky, I mean, blue sky. And oftentimes when you have that kind of a storm, like we were talking about, the anvil really extends out four and the, and the, you know, the Cirrus clouds from the anvil that is not blue sky.

Speaker 6 (51m 51s): Okay. Oh, good. Okay, good, good, good, good.

Speaker 4 (51m 53s): Yeah. That's, that's important to mention if, if, and, and yeah, I, I, I believe there are probably exceptions to the rule, but the rule has worked pretty well for me. And oftentimes it's the, you know, with big storms, it's the anvil that, that takes away the blue and

Speaker 6 (52m 11s): Yeah, no, it's a good point. And it was probably a bit by the time we landed, Oh, I remember this because it started raining pretty quick. Some at the time we, at the time we were dialing down out of the sky, it was getting gray so that, no, it's a good one. I like that. Do you have any other of these kinds of rules of thumb?

Speaker 4 (52m 25s): I have one which is a applies mainly to fly, as you mentioned, like a flat land flying, like one, one that works for me very well in, in, in the flat lands, like an and gate or ITO, or in, in the Northeast of Brazil is like the, the two zones. Like if I'm higher than 800 meter above ground, I'm in, you know, I'm, I'm gunning it.

And it is, I'm lower than a, a a hundred meters above ground. I'm in survival mode and in survival mode, they're the rule of thumb. That's, you know, that's the, well-known one that I follow, which has never leave lift to search for lift. So if I'm, and for me, you know, the survival mode is that the border is strict on gender is above Brown. I'm not going to leave, lift to look for better lift. I'm going to wait. I'm higher than a a hundred meters above ground.

And it was on the above a a hundred meters above ground. I'm going to a snob, anything that is slower than the days average. And I'm not going to turn in anything that's that slower than a two meter, you know, the that's, that's growing up slower than two meters or whatever the average is that sort of two gears that worked really well for me in the flat lands, all to being disciplined on, on the survival mode, to not, not be optimistic, but to be pessimistic.

And when I'm in the, the, the upper layer, I'm, I'm optimistic and the outs, it doesn't work out that well, because you can set at a high above ground or a altitude that it doesn't work so well, but in flatland,

Speaker 6 (54m 18s): And then you can still have, I think you can still have that rule. I like that. I think in the, in, you know, when you're in the mountainous terrain, you just have a, a nice clean cutoff between survival and, and gun on it. And, you know, cause I've often we wouldn't have that 800 because we were right on the terrain, but we're still really high, you know, we're right over the peaks or something. You know, if we went out over the Valley, we'd have 2000 meters.

Speaker 4 (54m 43s): Yeah, yeah. You can still, I think you can still do it, but it takes, it takes more fine tuning am I went to a zone, am I now in, and it's, it's very tempting to not admit that you're already in survival zone or a very tempting to remain in survival mode too long. It should be gunning it. I find it more difficult to set a clear dividing line between the two

Speaker 6 (55m 14s): Let's return real quickly. Rico to your, your, your fifth one in the list of, you know, from bad to not so bad. The last one was, you know, not looking like a doofus. And I mean, I, you know, it, it makes you laugh, but I think we all struggle with, I mean, we were, we all have egos and, and, and then it's an important one. And, you know, I've been reading a ton of sports, psychology books in the kind of run up to this race because I've obviously the mind is the thing that is the most important a, you know, the zone, you know, this is the physical and everything else, which has obviously, and skills and all of that.

But the mind is, is the big one. And I'm wondering if you had any other tools to help you drop the importance of those kind of last couple, you know, you, you don't want to eat, you don't want to crash your gear. You don't want to lose your gear. You don't want to get hurt, but, you know, we don't really wanna care what we look like. Who gives a shit, you're the one out there having one and, and everybody else is watching you on live tracking, you know? Yeah. But it's easier said than done,

Speaker 4 (56m 16s): But I think I have a, a real advantage here. And that probably comes from, from flying for a long time. I, I th I can even call it a super power that I have, which is, I think it, I don't really mind bombing up or I do mind, but I think it bothers me much, much, much less than most people I know. And I, and I, it really is a super power.

And to, to have that, because if you think about it without the bombing up in this sport would not be interesting. We would not be doing it. No one would. I mean, that's, that's what makes us appreciate the good flights. And, and for me, that sorta developed, I honestly think that's a superpower of mine. I, I'm not too concerned about, about that. And, and to see it, that way that even in force is that you need to think of it that way and forces and forces it to be a super power.

And, you know, you can even think of it, you know, as you know, actually I'm here to have fun while everyone else is competing. For me, for me, that works really well. It's also a sort of a luxury I have, cause I'm not working in this business. I'm not in all my livelihood. It doesn't come from this business. I'm not, I'm not an instructor. I'm not, I'm not, I'm not sponsored in a big way.

I'm not a, I don't owe anyone anything. So I can just, I can just be the recreational pilot. I am.

Speaker 6 (58m 2s): I think that there's, you know, when we've talked about this on, on recent shows, but you know, when I look at the really consistent world cup pilots, you know, the, the kind of a very often see in the top 10, there's one thing they had in common and that's that they don't freak out when they bomb out that they've been there enough, they've done it enough where they know that you're going to bomb out. We all bomb out. We all screw this up. And you know, they just, it's just another day, another experience to put it in your experience back and move on.

And, and I, you know, I've been one of these books I've been reading lately. I've been actually just reading a cover to cover over and over again. Cause I love it. Its called the Champion's mind. And it, it talks about, you know, the people that really Excel and succeed in, in sport or anything else, they dumped mistakes immediately. You know, they don't, they don't, you know, you think about it like a football player or a basketball player. And it talks about Michael Jordan. You know, he, he was given the opportunity to make the game winning shot.

I don't know how many times that you know, a lot, but he missed it like 28 times, you know, a bunch. And you know, if he let that get him down, how could he ever try to make another game winning shot in the future? You know, you just can't, you just

Speaker 5 (59m 22s): Got to let it go and Andy, and get on to the next thing. You're going to drop a pass. You're going to throw an interception. And if you, if you let that bug you, how can you play the rest of the game?

Speaker 4 (59m 34s): Exactly. And our sport is one which tactfully, it humbles all of us. So often as soon as we get cocky or even if we don't, it humbles us. So yeah, I'm really good at bombing us and then enjoying the rest of the day, you know, enjoying the hype or whatever. In fact, one of the In Alps free ride. I don't know if you've heard of Alps free, right?

It's a, it's a it's it's our team. You're in Switzerland. A couple of the really good XC pilots are in it. It just in those Swiss cross-country cook and there is a lot of excellent pilots there, but especially one of the Serina wrong issue is that she's a, a, a young, you know, she has been flying for two years or so. Like her attitude is just really amazing. I've in a way, when we go flying into the outs, when we go across the country flying, usually for me, it, it used to be, you get up early, you get to the launch, you fly.

And if you bomb out after 30, 50, 80, a hundred kilometers, you go home. But no, she, she, she walks up the next mountain and continue to add to it. If it's a good fly day, why would you go home? Why w why would you go out? And he came to fly. So it's a good flying day. So to make the most out of it, I found, you know, that, that added to it to be super inspiring.

Speaker 5 (1h 1m 7s): Rico before we move on to the kind of the next thing, is there anything we haven't tapped into yet in terms of what you learned from the bivvy? Any other stuff you want to pass on

Speaker 4 (1h 1m 17s): My take on why Volvo bivvy carries some extra risk compared to just regular ECC flying. Number one is flying into lease situations that just your, you need to get, you know, your, your path that you're trying to follow or the place you're trying to go. Will invariably take you through Lee situations almost at every day, then strong wind coping with strong wind land, again, strong wind flying on days where you, you know, usually when you go fly, you pick the Bay, according to the weather on a longer trip, you, well, you know, very well from excellent X out.

So strong, wind, slow plantings is something that is an additional sort of a danger that comes with volt of edging out storms. And the last one is sort of on, on like when you, when you decide to launch somewhere, it's very easy to, not those couple of boulders that you think you'll easily clear, but if there's, you know, if it's not lifting and, and, and you come up much lower, you can really underestimate how quickly you can.

You can crash into those because you're just a couple of meters lower coming in with, you know, trying to go out with, with tailwind and not clear on those boulders. So those are some of the added, added dangers I compiled. And the third is, you know, the, the one about flying into the Lees is that a word that's used and in English. So I try to, I don't have a rule of thumb for that because LEAs are, there are so many different LEAs and thirds.

What I, what I sort of tend to, the way I deal with those is for us to step gather all data I can. So is it how strong is the wind? And, and, and that includes even while flying, looking up when data from other wind station, how stable is the day of, if the data is stable and the lead is going to be nastier, how much ground clearance do I have super important, you know, in a, in a trajectory and through the li especially the worst possible trajectory through the Lea, assuming a lot of sink, how much, how much bronc we are in this, do I have, and , and can I sneak out, are there, is there a way to get out of there?

So to analyze all the data that is possible, and is it while approaching the Lea, is it, is it bumpy or smooth? Is it, is it sucking our, or as it washing, and then once you've analyzed, when, when you think you've taken in every source of data that you have sort of try to plan out, what's the worst possible outcome. If I fly where I'm intending to fly, what, what trajectory is that going to be? And then if you're willing to, you know, if you map that out and say it, even in the worst possible case, my projectory will be more or less safe.

And, and I won't get stuck in a tree or slam into a wall, then sort of go with the flow, you know, go with the flow and, and beyond the bees and, and, and, and cried, try to go fast.

Speaker 5 (1h 4m 53s): Yeah. What I've found with Lea is there's often this to get into you. It's fine, it's fine. It's fine. And then you get into the wash zone or something that you, and obviously you can't see, and, and the, the tendency right then is nasty. I'm going to run. And it's usually just a matter of press and a little bit farther. And I'm, again, this is not this scary to make this

Speaker 6 (1h 5m 18s): As a generalization. You know, every, every situation is a totally different, but usually, usually if you just keep going a little bit and press it a little bit further and hang onto the wing, and then, then it's going to turn into the Lee climb. And, and that will, you know, but you've got to have, again, not always, you've got to have enough sucking enough to climbing through the, you know, cause you're going to hit it again. And when you get up, when you start climbing and getting up above that, you're going to hit that windshield layer.

And so it, it needs to be strong enough to punch you through that. But

Speaker 4 (1h 5m 53s): I think, I think the most important question for, for LEAs and also other potentially dangerous situations is, is it worth it? Is it, is it worth it? I mean, is it like, In, if I'm just flying on an afternoon at a site, I'm not going to take that kind of a risk because it's not worth it. I'm not going to take that risk even for an ECC flight, unless it's going to be one of the best flights I've done, it's usually not worth it, but there are situations where it's worth it because, because you're, you know, because it's going to be a 200 kilometer triangle or so then, then, then I'm willing to take a, a, a slightly greater risk.

And then I would,

Speaker 6 (1h 6m 37s): And in those cases, like, like, we'll get it says when you do that and if you crash or screw it up and you, no, we shouldn't have any sympathy for that. And, you know, that's, it, we're knowledgeable it making that decision with full knowledge of what we're doing. And that's, that's important that there are times where you, that that is what we want to do and it needs to be done.

Speaker 4 (1h 6m 58s): Yeah. I mean, I'm super proud of myself that I've, I've not hurt myself ever flying and I, I want it to stay that way. So I, I tend to err on the side of caution, I try to detect when I'm compensating skills with courage. I really try to avoid that because, but the fact of the, the truth is if you, if you chase, if you chase it harder for a decade, you were likely to break your back in this sport.

And that's just something I'm super aware of. I've seen it happen. It's happened to a lot of friends and I don't want to be one of them. And I mean, flying is really awesome. It's given me so much, but it's not worth it. It's not bad good that I would, you know, risk my back for it. And at the fact that back injuries are likely of you chasing hard is, is just something I don't want to put up with. So you'll see me, you'll see me flying, taking more at it, adding an extra safety margin compared to most pilots, just because I don't want to, I don't to accept that risk.

Speaker 6 (1h 8m 17s): Yeah. I don't think anybody would, you know, after break in the back go, wow, that was worth it. Yeah. Yeah. You know, just no way. So yeah. That's a good thing that, you know, kind of always have in your mind, you know, is it worth it Rico as we get here at close to an hour, do you mind if we switch over a year, we did this survey that we put out some weeks ago now, and I got all these fun questions and I've been kind of pinging people with, with various ones. You mind if I just ask you some random go for a quick response.

Okay. What was the biggest aha moment you've had with flying in the last year?

Speaker 4 (1h 8m 56s): I think, I think probably to let the glider fly to, to make it's more than a year it's one and a half years, but I guess that counts. So also it it's, you know, early morning In in, in Costco, in Brazil, you launch at six in the morning and you have, there's really not much out there. And, and no way to figure out where the thermals are. Just, just following your intuition and letting the glider flying.

We don't really know. I, I think letting the glide or fly to, to sniff out thermal, this is like a, a, an aha. That's been, it's taken me 27 years to get to that point.

Speaker 6 (1h 9m 42s): What's the funniest thing you've ever seen flying either recently or ever,

Speaker 4 (1h 9m 49s): And Geneva. I, I used to live in Geneva and, and there is an awesome flying up there. The LZ a sort of next to form and there's, there's, there's chickens they're and on a strong formal day, someone said, how let's, let's take it a chicken up to a launch. And then, and then, and then let go of it and the thermals and, and, and imagine all the other pilots thinking, you know, or, or the thermal end of a chicken comes their way, like center in the next to them.

And it's the kind of day where I swear, I swear to you that no one did it. Of course, no, no one took the chicken up to long for that. But that's when it comes to mind,

Speaker 6 (1h 10m 45s): What are your goals this next year? You know, you had some big flights down in the SureTel and you did this cool bivvy, where do you want to take your flying? Now,

Speaker 4 (1h 10m 55s): I've been wondering if I should try to learn like the sort of X Alps landing techniques, you know, the fly on the wall stuff Kriegel as a, a tutorial on that. Although it's possible that those sort of landings are reserved for people who do you know, we a hundred hours a year, you know, it shouldn't be tried, but the people who aren't really professionals, that's a big, that's something I w I would really like them deep.

What I strongly want to do is learn more about from, from other pilots, I've been most of my flying life. I've been, I've been flying alone. And now these, these last few years, I've been flying a lot with, with, with my buddies and Alps free ride, and they are just amazing pilots. And I'm learning so much from them learning so much about typographies and, and, and different valleys and, and how to do certain stuff.

Speaking with other pilots, also in, in the Swiss league, they're doing a great job to sort of share information there's really so much where I still wanna work on. Then in terms of a accelerate in a speed bar technique, I think I can get much better. In efficiently flying on my versus pushing and pulling the, the speed bar, you know, with, with the two lines.

I, I, I've been flying to run wings for two and a half years, and I think there's still so much for me to learn there.

Speaker 5 (1h 12m 42s): Yeah, that's it, that's almost never ending. I find this how we always get more efficient. Last one Rico is if you can only make one more flight in your life, where would you go? What flight we would be? Oh, it is,

Speaker 4 (1h 12m 58s): There is a whole lot of them, there was a whole lot of them, but right now we're in the midst of winter and, and, and they're not, they're not taunting me. So I asked me something else. That's

Speaker 5 (1h 13m 12s): How did you, did you enjoy flying in the streets?

Speaker 4 (1h 13m 14s): Oh yeah. Yeah. It's, it's great flying by I'm I'm not good at, at the team flying bet. I, I, I, I, I don't tend to get into a flow as a team. I just like to fly alone, but it's, it's a magnificent and such good flying there and such good vibes when you land somewhere in the middle of nowhere and, and, and chill with the locals and the weight to get picked up.

Yeah. That's really awesome.

Speaker 5 (1h 13m 51s): Okay. So this will be the final one, and this is even harder. So I'm ramping it up for you. Why, why do you fly

Speaker 4 (1h 13m 60s): The thought about that quite a bit? There is a couple of reasons. One is it's nice to have a mission and flying gives you a mission. And it's a nice mission because you're every minute or every spare afternoon, and you're trying to get out into nature and, and spending time with nature and, and trying to do something that is not really intended for humans to do. And I'm trying to do it as best as you possibly can.

I think flying is one of the best, best sports you could practice, because, you know, if you want to have that sort of thing, because it's, you know, it ages while a we're, you're a couple years older than me, not much, but you're among the world's best pilots. What, what sports is that possible? You know, you could, you can, and you're doing adventure racing, exi flying. There's no reason why it can't be an excellent exi pilot.

It would be 50 years old or 60 years old. So that, that, that it was a good choice. It, wasn't why I started flying, but it's definitely why I'm going to stick with it for a long time. That's great. Rico what a joy man. I appreciate it. Thanks for reaching out to me and sharing with all of us here, your adventure, and a very cool, we'll put some stuff up in the show notes about that. I'm sure. And, but thanks, man. I appreciate it. That was a lot of fun. Fair, welcome. Good. Good to see you again and hope.

Next time we see each other, it'll be somewhere at a launch and ready to go

Speaker 1 (1h 15m 44s): Take off. Absolutely. Let's do it. Cheers. Thanks. Bye. Bye. When we rise, it's like the strawberry fields. I appreciate it. You bad. It is by faith. If you find the Cloudbase, Mayhem valuable, you can support it in a lot of different ways. You can give us a rating on iTunes or Stitcher or wherever you get your podcast that goes a long ways and help spread the word. You can blog about it on your own website, or share it on social media. We can talk about it all the way up to launch with your pilot friends. I know a lot of interesting conversations have happened that way.

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