Gin Bobcat 16.5m

With all these flying reports doing the rounds I thought I’d let you know how I’m getting on with my new toy now I’ve had a couple of hours playing with it.

Simon has already sent you an email saying how he got on with it at TSWNN I think; but to remind you it’s a Gin Bobcat 16.5m (the largest – making it’s debut late last year) My first chance to play with it was on Benn Y Phott (a day you forecast to be good!) blowing around 15 – 18 mph.

I had been tempted to fly on nil wind/light days but I just don’t know how far it would get from any of our normal sites (North Barrule to Hibernian was tempting) and I rationalised that I bought it for strong wind soaring and not speed flying.

18mph with the trim set to slow is enough to have fun ground handling and for extended top to bottoms on a shallow ridge like Benn Y Phott. After a nervous start because of its perceived twitchiness (by ref to a normal paraglider) my smile began to grow. The rustling and collapses are not so scary after you realise there is so much energy to play with. It’s a cheeky little f%^&er… However, because the flying is so active my arms got tired very quickly.

My next chance to play was Thursday 16th – with a shitty NE wind direction 20-23 mph forcast. So I headed off to the hill behind Dhoon school (Slieau Lewaigue was out of the question due to lack of landing options).

Again it must have been blowing 15-18mph and I had fun for 30 minutes or so doing extended top to bottoms but was ready for something a bit stronger.

So headed off for the black hut for a trek up Snaefell joined by Simon..

Set the trimmers to medium and had about 15 minutes (which was all my arms could manage!) having extreme soaring fun on the shallow NE face just before a small squall came in. I have to say that from the ground it must look really twitchy but in the air it feels rock solid.

You must try it … and apparently you can even use a motor ….