Archive for the ‘Hang Gliding’ Category

1 Year Anniversary Waikiki on O’hau Hawaii 2013

Posted by: Frances

July 14th, 2013 >> Hang Gliding, Outdoor Activities, Travel

This year was my year to surprise Matt with an anniversary trip.  I chose to go to O’hau Hawaii and stayed at the Outrigger on the Reef.  We had a very nice time while we were there and did several things. We took a sunset dinner cruise around the island that made me quite sick, however we got to see a group of whales with a baby dancing in the water.  The sunset was absolutely gorgeous as well.  We also got to see a Luau that we did not think was all that great.

The best day we had was our drive across the island to Lanikai Beach.  It was voted one of the top 3 beaches in the U.S. with white soft sand and a beautiful view of the Makapu’u Islands.  We enjoyed a relaxing morning on the beach followed by an awesome challenging hike called Pill Boxes right off the beach. The hike had steep inclines and very slippery surfaces, but had extraordinary views of the island you couldn’t get anywhere else.  Then, off to have a quick bite to eat and up to Makapu’u peak for some Hang Gliding adventure.  The view from the launch was amazing and looking down at the crystal clear ocean water below was unbelievable.  After some fun hang gliding, we venture over to the Makapu’u Lighthouse hike.  This was a much less challenging hike with views of  whales in the ocean all along the way.  Finally, we ended up at Kona Brewing Company with some other Hang Glider pilots to satisfy our hunger after our active day in paradise.

On our anniversary we enjoyed the sands of the beach and soaked up some sun working up an appetite for our romantic dinner at Michele’s Restaurant.  Our dinner was AMAZING!!!  We also ate the top of tier of our wedding cake for dessert, that tasted just as fabulous as it did a year ago on our wedding day.


July 28, 2012 Big Spring, TX Hang Gliding Competition

Posted by: Frances

August 9th, 2012 >> Hang Gliding, Outdoor Activities, Travel, Uncategorized

It was really great to see everyone at the competition.  I really miss everyone.  We had so much fun even though it was really HOT!  One of the tasks was cancelled one day so we all headed to the small water park and had a lot of laughs.  At the end of the competition, Tim was nice enough to take me up in his 1969 150J Cessna plane.  That was a LOT of fun!!!



Trip to Austin & then Santa Barbara for Hang Gliding Lessons

Posted by: Frances

April 9th, 2011 >> Educational, Hang Gliding, Outdoor Activities, Travel

I went home to Austin, TX this last weekend.  I had a great time seeing everyone as usual.  I wish I had more time to see the LC Rocks crew, but maybe next time.  On Saturday night when I flew in, I went to Amanda’s Baccalaureate Party, needless to say it was quite eventful for myself.  Then, Sunday I spent the day with great friends and family over breakfast, lunch, and dinner.  Monday was a short day, but lunch with mom and dad which was really nice.  I miss everyone so much.

On Tuesday, after being back in California, I drove to Santa Barbara to Elings Park training hill to complete my Hang Gliding Lessons FINALLY with Zac Majors.  His website is: and he is one of the top Hang Glider Pilots in the United States.  He does lessons and tandems.  So we went out to the hill and did about 20 flights off the hill between a 1/4 and 1/2 way up the 200ft hill.  Wednesday we went back out and I did another 20 flights or so off the hill between 1/4 and 1/2 way up the 200ft hill.  Then, to top the day off, I did 3 flights from the top at 200ft.  My first and third flights were pretty good, but my second one was good until the landing.  I wacked and my nose went landed right in the nose of the glider.  I have a nice purple bruise on my nose to show for it.  (Just a little bruise and soar, but no blood THANK GOODNESS!)  I passed my Hang 1 Pilot test and the written part of the Hang 2 Pilot test.  Hopefully next week I will complete the flying part for the Hang 2!  (At least that is the goal!)

See my video on facebook


Elings Park Training Hill: What I get to see as I launch from the hill!  GORGEOUS!


Elings 200ft Training Hill

Juggling: The Passing Zone Gravity Attacks

Posted by: Frances

March 13th, 2011 >> Concerts, Educational, Hang Gliding

Tonight I went to see The Passing Zone Gravity Attacks with Owen Morse and Jon Wee.  I met Owen a few weeks ago out at Crestline Hang Gliding.  He mentioned he is a Juggler and had a show in town coming up.  I went to see it and it was amazing.  Both of them are very talented and very entertaining.  If you get a chance to see them, I promise it is worth it.  I enjoyed the entire show and time just flew by.  The rubber band trick Owen does is pretty fascinating.  Their website is:


This is just a clip of “Their Story” I thought I would share:
The Passing Zone has been awarded five Guinness World Records and 18 Gold Medals from the International Juggler’s Association.

If you have a chance you should read their whole story, it is quite impressive.

Santa Barbara, CA Weekend

Posted by: Frances

February 7th, 2011 >> Hang Gliding, Outdoor Activities, Travel

This weekend Matt and I went to Santa Barbara, CA to see Zac, Hang Glide, and hang out at the beach.  On Saturday, Matt and Zac both flew from “The Eliminator” launch site.  I brought the dogs with us and walked them all over.  The view from the launch is so beautiful!  I can’t even imagine how beautiful it was for Matt and Zac as they flew.


Standing on “The Eliminator” Launch Site

The next adventure after the two of them finished their awesome flights, we headed to Hendry’s Beach with the dogs.  That was fun and relaxing.  We walked up and down the beach as the dogs played.  We also got to see an amazing sunset.


Me at Hendry’s Beach


Matt and I

One of the other neat things I saw at the beach besides the gorgeous sunset, are ladybugs.  They are everywhere.  That was very unusual for me to see.


The Ladybug

After they both enjoyed their flights and the beach, we went to the Santa Barbara Shellfish Company for some dinner.  We ordered the 3 lb Local Rock Crab Special.  The crab was still all together when it was served.  Then, I was taught how to properly crack the crab to get to the meat.  Needless to say, we made a mess.  It was very good and there was definitely some excitement in it for me.


Santa Barbara Shellfish Company


The Crab

On Sunday, the guys went up to fly again and attempt to fly to East Beach.  It was a gorgeous day.  I wondered East Beach with the dogs the majority of the afternoon.  It was very relaxing.  Very few people were at the beach, which was very nice.  I let the dogs loose to play and enjoyed the sun.


East Beach Santa Barbara, CA


The dogs…

It was a nice weekend and felt like a vacation getaway!  Thanks Zac and Erin!

Southern California

Posted by: Frances

November 6th, 2010 >> Concerts, Hang Gliding, Outdoor Activities, Travel

Well, so much has happened in the last 3 months I don’t even know where to begin.  First, I am no longer in Greenville, SC.  I was just not myself there and feel like now that things happened the way they did, I have found myself again.  I am unbelievably happier now and making more steps to improving my life and my future.

I am currently in Southern California east of Los Angeles.  I am doing a travel assignment out here and really enjoying it.  I am hoping to be able to start a fresh contract again after this one is complete so I can stay at this hospital.  The people are wonderful there.

Since, I have been in California I have not done too many things except head out to Crestline almost every weekend with Matt for some Hang Gliding excitement.  My lessons are at a halt at this moment, but I am planning on getting back into things come next Spring.   Matt and I have done some very exciting things besides the awesome Hang Gliding weekends of flying and fun.

We went to see Gary Allan in Universal City, which was sooo much fun!!

gary-allan-gibson-amphitheater-universal-city-ca-21Gary Allan

matt-i-gary-allan-concert-2Matt and I at Gary Allan Concert

We also went to the L.A. County Fair one weekend.  They had the Worlds largest Outlaw BBQ Grill there that was pretty neat.  We had a really nice day celebrating 3 years of meeting on the airplane.


Worlds Largest Outlaw Grill



Matt and I as lemons


We also made it out to the ZZ Top and Tom Petty Concert!  I just love Tom Petty and he put on a great show.  That was a lot of fun and a last minute decision to go.


Then, for Matt’s Birthday my sister Jackie came into town and we went to Universal Studios for a day, then made our way to San Diego to the Stone Brewery.  You can see pics of that on Matt’s website.

Lastly, we went back to Austin for my birthday to celebrate with all of my family and friends.   We went to the Oasis to see LC Rocks.  It was a blast as always!  We also ate out at Kerby Lane Cafe and Mighty Fine Burgers, some of Matt’s favorites.  It was a fantastic weekend with everyone.  You can see pictures from this weekend on my facebook page.

Chattanooga, TN Riverbend Festival and Hang Gliding

Posted by: Frances

June 21st, 2010 >> Concerts, Hang Gliding, Outdoor Activities

This weekend we went to Chattanooga, TN and the boys flew twice on Friday at Lookout Mountain Flight Park.   Then, on Saturday it was rained out so we went out that night to the Riverbend Festival and heard Charlie Daniels play and watched the fireworks show.  Finally, on Sunday the boys flew twice again at Henson’s Gap this time in the Sequatchie Valley.


Frances, Matt, Barry at Riverbend inDowntown Chattanooga, TN


Smiley Face Fireworks!




Matt and Ricker Soaring in the Sequatchie Valley

1st Boat Tow Hang Glide Lesson this year!!!

Posted by: Frances

June 13th, 2010 >> Hang Gliding

I went out to Lake Norman in Charlotte, NC and met Ben Burril.  It was early morning and the wind was very light with scattered clouds.  It was really hot though!  I was towed up four different times and got a total of about 10-15 minutes of airtime, which is great for me!  I was flying a Gemini glider that is way too big for me, but works.

The first flight I was able to get about half way across the lake and then came down.  That was the longest I have flown boat towing yet!  I was really excited.  I finally figured out how to shift my body weight to control the direction of the glider, but I was over compensating.

The second flight I flew the ENTIRE way across the lake!!! WOW, I was totally stoked! I made it!  I did much better this flight, but was only leading with my feet and was forgetting to move my shoulders too.
My third and fourth flights were about half way across the lake again and I started to get tired so it was time to call it quits.

I had a great day out there and was taught a bunch of new things.  LOTS of progress for me! Yea!!


Me hooking in!


Getting the lines straight to fly!



Great Smoky Mtns Nat’l Park & Blue Ridge Pwy / My NEW HARNESS & 9m Pulse

Posted by: Frances

May 30th, 2010 >> Hang Gliding, Holidays, Outdoor Activities

This has been a very eventful weekend!  The weather was awful, raining and dark so flying was not really looking good for the weekend at Lookout Mountain or Hensons with the Tennessee Tree Toppers.  Matt and I drove to Lookout Mountain Flight Park to pick up my new harness.  I bought a GT cross country harness from them.  It fits perfect!  It is snug and very comfortable.  I also finally had the opportunity to set up my Airwave 9m Pulse hang glider!



my-harness-pm-pulse-7 my-harness-pm-pulse-9

We also went to Maryville, TN to visit one of Matt’s College friends.  We went to Aubreys for dinner and hung out.  On Sunday we took the long route to Asheville, NC to see Matt’s mother.  We drove thru the Great Smoky Mountains National Park and made some fun stops along the way.

We also drove down part of the Blue Ridge Parkway.  The weather was cool and slightly sunny with lots of clouds.  The views were amazing.






Fly-In at Glassy Mountain

Posted by: Frances

May 23rd, 2010 >> Hang Gliding, Outdoor Activities

This weekend was the Fly-In at Glassy Mountain.  On Saturday there was a good turn out of people that came to fly.  I believe John Ray had the longest flight.  Most everyone else had a sled run or flew for just a little bit then landed.  The weather was great even though the wind was not exactly giving us prime conditions to fly.  The last few days for me have been frustrating because my eye has been giving me lots of trouble.  As a result, I was not able to set up my glider or do any runs off the training hill either.  I was very bummed!  I met some great people though!  We also had a great confetti egg fight to end the evening between Matt, Noah, and I.

dsc08740 dsc08734

Matt on launch:


Sunday (today), the weather was not showing the right wind direction, but there are people flying from what I understand.  I stayed home because I am still not quite feeling up to my normal self.  Hopefully, I will hear some great stories later this evening.