Fly Away Hang Gliding
Hang Gliding in California
P.O. Box 3274
Santa Barbara, California 93130
Phone: (805) 403-8487
We sell new and used equipment.
We also purchase used equipment.
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Tammy has been flying since 1984 and teaching since 1990. She is an Instructor Administrator. She was the 1995 Women’s National Champion and has taught and flown around the world.
View more information on Tammy
Zac Majors (Zippy) has been flying since 1990 and teaching since 1995. He is one of the best tandem pilots in the world. We are excited to have him here in Santa Barbara. He’s been the National Champion several times and took 4Th in the 2009 Hang Gliding World Competition, first of the USA pilots. Plus he is a fun loving, easy going, excellent tandem instructor.
Google 2650 Cliff Dr., Santa Barbara. There is no address there, but it will put you very close to the entrance. If you are traveling north on Hyw. 101 from Los Angeles, you will go left on Las Positas, towards the ocean. If you are traveling south from San Francisco, go right on Las Positas.
Go about 1 mile, through several stoplights and you will come to a “T” intersection at a stop sign with a flashing red light.
Mountain tandems are an incredible thrill. You will be able to fly the glider, if you choose.
Tandems are comparable to riding on the back of a motorcycle vs. driving the motorcycle solo. We suggest, but do not require, that people with no experience in hang gliding take a lesson before they have a tandem flight. There are several reasons for this. The training hill winds are more consistent than in the mountains, therefore on any given day you are more likely to fly. There is less fear involved with a solo lesson than a mountain tandem. Fear comes from a lack of understanding. With understanding, the fear goes away and you will probably enjoy your tandem flight more. And finally flying a hang glider solo empowers you in a profound way and are you will be more likely to become a pilot. Learning to fly a hang glider is easier than learning to ride a bicycle. The most important prerequisite is to have a desire to fly. We offer a 3/4 day solo lesson and then tandem flight off the top of the training hill. Or you can choose the intro package of a solo training hill lesson and a mountain tandem flight.
We like to save the tandem flight for further into the training program, when you will be able to learn more from the flight and landing approach, since you will soon be doing it yourself.
Please be advised that weather is an issue with mountain tandems. Somedays we cannot fly the mountains because the winds are not right. Many of those days, the training hill will have great training weather. It takes 1 to 2 hours for a mountain tandem, which includes driving up the mountain, weather depending.
Our 3800 foot mountain launch
Fly Away Hang Gliding provides all of the necessary equipment that you will need to learn to fly. Hang gliding lessons will run 3 or more hours with many flights. We limit our classes to 4 people per instructor.
Like learning anything new, the more days a month/week that you can dedicate to learning to fly, the quicker you will progress. Learning to fly hang gliders is easier than learning to ride a bicycle. We specialize in personalized instruction.
Most students achieve their Hang 1, Beginning rating, in 2 days. It takes an average of 6 to 10 days to achieve your Hang 2, Novice rating. This includes several mountain lessons. A Novice rating allows you to fly without an instructor in our mountains. Soon you will be using the thermals to stay up and soar for hours, like a soaring bird.
You will begin your lesson in the simulator, learning the basic controls. Then you will run with the glider on level ground, ‘moonwalking’, as a hang gliding instructor runs along with you, controlling the glider, as you learn to steer. As soon as you are comfortable, can ‘keep target’ (look at a target during your whole flight) have a light touch, and steer, you will progress higher up the hill. We will progress you as safely as possible, but we will make sure you have the skills required to go higher.
Students average 50 to 100 feet in the air by the end of the first hang gliding lesson.
Quick learning students make it to the top of the 200 foot training hill on their first flying lesson.
The average student makes it to the top of the hill by their second hang gliding lesson.
We can video your flights. Seeing a video of yourself right there on the hill after the flight helps you learn more quickly. You are encouraged to bring your own video and/or still camera also.
We offer transport to the top of our 200 foot training hill via a hang glider hauling vehicle (the Brat) for $5 a carry (or $4 a carry if there is more than one student) if you don’t want to hike it yourself.
For most people, this results in 3 times as many flights per lesson than hiking it yourself. This is one of the many advantages of our hang gliding school. After a tandem mountain flight you’re ready for your first solo mountain flight.
Combine the ‘Brat’, Santa Barbara’s consistent weather and excellent instructors and it’s easy to see why our students progress often twice or three times as fast, requiring half as many lessons, as many other schools. Many students who see how we train after they have learned to fly elsewhere wish they had known about us before.
You will fly Wills Wing Condors and Falcons the state of the art training gliders. Advanced pilots average 2 hours per flight in our local mountains. You’re first mountain flight will be off Alternator, at 3800 feet. Your flight will last about 15 to 20 minutes. Congratulations, you’re now a pilot and the air is free!
The minimum weight is 80 pounds. The maximum weight is 350 pounds. You must be able to pick up 40 pounds and jog at least 5 MPH.
It’s warm and sunny here in Santa Barbara year round, and we have fresh, clean, smog-free air. The weather is good for learning to fly year round, unless it’s actually raining. Hang gliding is the closest you will ever come to flying like a bird or the flying you’ve done in your dreams. It is also the least expensive and most exhilarating form of human flight. We have a perfect safety record and plan to keep it that way. Hang gliding is safer than general aviation, aside from flying in a commercial aircraft. It has the same fatality rate per capita as scuba diving. It used to be very dangerous because of the uncertified, unsafe equipment and lack of instructors. Modern hang gliders are certified Pitch Stable and rated for 6G’s positive loading and 4.5G’s negative. We are looking forward to hearing from you and teaching you to fly.
If I Only Had Wings – Matie B. Hang Gliding
Santa Barbara Training Hill 1 Compilation
The “Brat” – hang glider hauling vehicle for Fly Away Hang Gliding