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Paragliding the Yellowstone Region
Jackson Hole Paragliding • (Jackson Hole) Come to Paragliding Paradise and enjoy alpine flying at its absolute best. Ten Sites in a ten mile radius including the 4,139' aerial tram. Jackson Hole Paragliding offers scenic tandem flights, beginner through advanced instruction, mountain thermal clinics, x-c clinics, maneuvers training, aerobatics demonstrations, scooter, truck, and boat towing. Jackson Hole Paragliding

A Bit About Paragliding

Many folks show up in our Yellowstone region mountain towns and see paragliders gliding between our peaks, and they think they sure would like to be able to soar with the eagles – Well you can and there are several outfitters in the area to help you do so.

Paragliding is a recreational and competitive flying sport. A paraglider is a free-flying, foot-launched aircraft. The pilot sits in a harness suspended below a fabric wing, whose shape is formed by its suspension lines and the pressure of air entering vents in the front of the wing.

Most popular paragliding regions have a number of schools, generally registered with and/or organized by national associations. Certification systems vary widely between countries, though around 10 days instruction to basic certification is standard.

You are in luck though because you don’t have to go through a school to go paragliding because with the advent of tandem jumping all you have to do is hook up with a paraglider guide to soar with those eagles.

The paraglider wing or canopy is known in aeronautical engineering as a ram-air airfoil, or parafoil. Such wings comprise two layers of fabrics that are connected to internal supporting material in such a way as to form a row of cells. By leaving most of the cells open only at the leading edge, incoming air (ram-air pressure) keeps the wing inflated, thus maintaining its shape. When inflated, the wing's cross section has the typical teardrop aerofoil shape.


The pilot is loosely and comfortably buckled into a harness that offers support in both the standing and sitting positions. Modern harnesses are designed to be as comfortable as a lounge chair in the sitting position. Many harnesses even have an adjustable 'lumbar support'. A reserve parachute is also typically connected to a paragliding harness.

My favorite part of paragliding is undoubtedly thermalling, thermalling may be my favorite thing to do in life. There’s nothing like hooking a sharp-edged, positive ripper of a thermal and riding it upward for a couple of miles. A little more thermal theory is useful to understand how to fly them. I believe thermals close to the ground are often quite small and relatively violent. As they rise they tend to smooth out and expand. Pressure also tends to influence thermal formation; high-pressure days tend to produce smaller, sharp-edged, “ punchy” thermals. Lower-pressure days can produce very strong thermals obviously, but they tend to have mellower edges and be larger.

To give prospective pilots a chance to determine if they would like to proceed with a full pilot training program, most schools offer tandem flights, in which an experienced instructor pilots the paraglider with the prospective pilot as a passenger. Schools often offer pilot's families and friends the opportunity to fly tandem, and sometimes sell tandem pleasure flights at holiday resorts.

Most recognized courses lead to a national license and an internationally recognized International Pilot Proficiency Information/Identification card. The IPPI specifies five stages of paragliding proficiency; from the entry level ParaPro one to the most advance stage five.

If you possess an adventurous spirit, you may want to jump off a Yellowstone mountain with one of our paraglider guides and experience a tandem flight.


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