In February I went to Tapalpa,MX with Granger from Parasoft Paragliding. This was my second trip to Tapalpa. Armed with my pod harness and my newly aquired Ozone M4 I wanted to put some hours on this wing before the XC season started in California. Below are photos of tracklogs from two XC flights from this trip. Leonardo Link
XC Flight #1. Launch from Tapalpa, follow the concave ridge out to the cross (Cruz de Techaluta) and glide out to the main road by the flats. I had the lofty goal of possibly flying all the way to San Marcos but I decided I’d made my goal for the day and landed within easy retrieve distance.
I had quite some time to pick an LZ but alas I picked the one field filled with about 20 juvenile bulls. Luckily they were confused by the balled up paraglider and gave me just enough time to walk over to the gate and toss my gear over the barbed wire. A taxi ended up stopping for my by the road and I got right to the main road up to Tapalpa. Total of 15.7 miles XC distance.
My second XC flight was an extension of the first. The first leg was to the cross (Cruz de Techaluta) then back to Tapalpa LZ, then to Sayula LZ. At the cross I had the choice of going straight line to Tapalpa LZ or following the ridge back to launch to tank up and then hit the second turnpoint. I chose the latter. Total XC distance : 24.3 miles. (Leonardo Link)
I launched rather early and had to scratch around for quite a while before getting enough altitude to attempt crossing the “Power Lines of No Return”. The blue colored track in the image on the right shows the flight just after launch.
Below you can see the outbound trip as the bluish track. There was a slight headwind but thermals were abundant and mostly where I expected to find them.
The first turnpoint was the cross of Techaluta.
Shortly after turning around to follow the ridge back to Launch I saw another pilot on a Niviuk wing coming the other way. We circled in a thermal for a few turns and then waved goodbye as he was continuing on. The wind had increased slightly giving me a really nice pace on the way back to Launch. In the image below you can see the increased ground speed of the downwind glides as a deeper red and yellow colored track compared to the outbound track which is mostly green.
Just before crossing back over the “Power Lines of no Return” I got a nice thermal making it easier to get back to Launch. You can see where the power lines are by the large swath of cleared land at the bottom of the picture on the right.
The last thermal gave me the glide to reach Sayula and I even had to spiral down in sink because it was getting very buoyant out there.