Current COVID-19 Policy (updated 8 April 2020)

The ACTHPA Committee met by phone hookup this week to review the recent decision to suspend flying at the sites we manage, after we sought clarification from ACT Sport and Recreation regarding the status of hang gliding and paragliding as sports that could be regarded as forms of individual exercise.

We are pleased to inform you that advice has been received from the Executive Branch Manager that hang gliding and paragliding fall outside the current restrictions and may proceed. The full statement is here. It is important that you read it in full.

This means that flying at ACT sites is lawful, although it is always subject to change and it is our individual responsibility to monitor the ACT Government website (https://www.covid19.act.gov.au). Access to State and National Parks is a matter for the ACT Government and/or the Federal Government and if there is a decision to close the parks our flying sites will close. The site most commonly used in the ACT is Lanyon.

Tandem Flight restrictions handed down from SAFA still apply in the ACT as is does across Australia.

The situation is not yet resolved for ACTHPA managed sites in NSW. The NSWHPA has likewise engaged with NSW Sport and Recreation. Any advice they receive will be provided to members as soon as practicable. We have provided them with a copy of the advice from the ACT.

So that is good news for those that are keen to continue flying.

When you read the document from ACT Sport and Recreation you will see that it is no longer “business as usual”. There are strict directives that must be followed about the size of groups, physical distancing, use of equipment, transport and the like.

The committee considered how to interpret these directives for our sport and we list them as follows:

  • We are restricted to groups of two, so we recommend only one pilot on launch at any one time

  • If there are four pilots in the air already, please wait until someone has landed before launching

  • No car pooling

  • No cross country flights. Land only in the site designated LZ

  • Please use radios at the site and also carry a mobile phone and other safety devices you may regularly use

  • Please assess the conditions carefully to ensure they are within your capability. Safety is a critical factor at this time

  • Please be careful using padlocks and gates. The virus can live on hard surfaces for an extended time

  • Our strong preference is that you do not post your intentions or activities on the ACTHPA Facebook page (this could be seen as an invitation to a social gathering).

The most obvious directive is not specific to flying, ie physical distancing, but it should be obvious that this is the most crucial factor of all. It should be easy enough to maintain your four square meters on the hill and indeed in the air.

Finally, we ask that you respect the decisions people make right now. Some will choose not to fly. Others will be in the air as soon as conditions allow and they will be flying lawfully, at least in the ACT.

As we stated above, the situation for ACTHPA managed sites in NSW is under active review.

In fact all the committee’s decisions need to constantly monitored and reviewed as this is a rapidly changing situation and the laws may be tightened or relaxed at any time.

As ever the committee is keen to promote the sport, to improve safety and to protect and develop our sites. This also means maintaining close working relationships with land owners and land holders.

Thank you all for your patience.

About ACTHPA

The ACT Hang gliding and Paragliding Association (ACTHPA) is the club for all hang gliders, paragliders and their motorised forms in the region. The region is excellent for carbon-free flying and there are some great areas for motorised flight as well. We have many excellent sites, local paragliding instructors and an active pilot community. We maintain a number of launch sites, and wind talkers in the local area to help in deciding when and where to fly.

Flying in Canberra

If it is ‘on’ then you can pretty much guarantee that someone will be out flying. If you are planning to go for a fly at one of our sites, please post a message on our Facebook group so you can meet up with others. The wind talkers provide current wind speed and direction and records this information for the previous 12 hours. The weather resources page links to useful weather information.

If you are a visiting pilot, remember to contact one of the locals prior to flying any site.

Learn to Fly

If you’re interested in learning to fly, take a look at the SAFA Schools page, and you could also join our Facebook group or come along to a club meeting to ask for recommendations.

Club Meetings

Club meetings are held on the first Tuesday of each month (except December and January) at the Canberra Labor Club in Weston Creek starting at 7.30 pm. At the meetings we talk about flying and put members in contact with each other. We have a strong social scene.

Recent Flights Around Canberra

These are just a few of the recent flights by club members in the ACT region.

NameSiteAircraftModelDistanceDate
Ken CroweCanberra, Lake Georg... - AUParagliderSwing Arcus 72.30km2020-03-28
Jonathan BishopCastle HillParagliderOzone Lm 617.78km2020-03-28
Ken CroweLake GeorgeParagliderSwing Arcus 72.66km2020-03-23
Brendan FraserLake GeorgeParagliderOzone Swift 412.40km2020-03-09
Jonathan BishopBoob HillParagliderNova Mentor 410.81km2020-02-28
Jonathan BishopCastle HillParagliderNova Mentor 46.10km2020-02-23
Ken CroweLake GeorgeParagliderSwing Arcus 723.65km2020-02-16
Ken CroweLake GeorgeParagliderSwing Arcus 72.93km2020-02-16
Alex ChapmanCollectorParagliderNova Mentor 4188.18km2020-01-19
Alex BoikoLake GeorgeParagliderAdvance Epsilon 716.37km2019-12-13
Pete CohnLake George Nth Laun... - AUParagliderOzone Swift 41.20km2019-12-08
Jonathan BishopCollectorParagliderOzone Lm 6121.30km2019-12-08
Haydon GrayCollectorParagliderLm626.31km2019-12-08
Trent B?Hang GliderMoyes Litespeed Rx Pro 3.51.59km2019-11-27
Trent B?Hang GliderMoyes Litespeed Rx Pro 3.52.32km2019-11-27
Phillip RobinsonCanberra, Spring Ran... - AUParaglider6.30km2019-11-17
Phillip RobinsonCanberra, Spring Ran... - AUParagliderBgd Bgd Cure8.00km2019-10-30
Matt KinchCollectorParagliderAdvance Iota 26.60km2019-10-28
Alex ChapmanCollectorParagliderNova Mentor 439.90km2019-10-28
Phillip RobinsonCanberra, Spring Ran... - AUParagliderBgd Bgd Cure6.00km2019-10-24

Longest Flights in the Canberra Region

These are some of the longest cross-country flights recorded in the Canberra region. Also see the site records page for records broken down by site and wing category.

NameSiteAircraftModelDistanceDate
Dave MayLake George ...Hang GliderMoyes Rs3.5318.63km2010-02-01
Trent BrownCarolsHang GliderAirborne C4 13.5209.72km2008-01-27
Trent BrownLake George Nth Laun... - AUHang GliderMoyes Litespeed Rs3.5195.40km2011-01-28
Igor LikhosherstovBowningParagliderNiviuk Peak 3188.80km2013-11-30
Alex ChapmanCollectorParagliderNova Mentor 4188.18km2020-01-19
Rafael EsquillaroLake GeorgeParagliderNiviuk Icepeak 7 Pro183.23km2017-01-04
Trent BrownBinalong - AUHang GliderMoyes Litespeed Rs3.5164.70km2009-12-12
Rene SedlmLake George Nth Laun... - AUParagliderAdvance Sigma 10162.00km2018-02-04
Lukas VymetalBowningParagliderAxis Venus 3158.07km2013-11-30
Trent BrownCanberra, Pig Hill... - AUHang GliderMoyes Litespeed Rs3.5153.10km2012-01-28
Trent BrownCanberra, Spring Ran... - AUHang GliderMoyes Litespeed Rx3.5152.80km2012-11-04
Grant EdwardCanberra, Pi...Hang GliderAirborne C4-13.5140.19km2008-12-06
Trent BrownLake George Nth Laun... - AUHang GliderMoyes Litespeed Rs3.5137.30km2011-12-15
Trent BrownLake George Nth Laun... - AUHang GliderMoyes Litespeed Rs3.5135.30km2012-03-18
Igor LikhosherstovBowningParagliderNiviuk Peak 3131.27km2015-03-15
Lukas VymetalBowningParagliderAxis Venus 3127.53km2013-12-01
Dave MayLake George ...Hang GliderMoyes Rs3.5126.44km2010-03-11
Andrew LutonLake George Nth Laun... - AUHang GliderAirborne C4 13.5125.60km2013-11-17
Dave MayCanberra, Lake Georg... - AUHang GliderMoyes Rs4125.60km2010-12-05
Trent BrownCanberra, Pi...Hang GliderAirborne C4 13.5125.11km2009-03-01