Call For 2016 Calendar Pictures

Douglas Noblet, Calendar Editor

It’s that time of year again to get your images in for the 2016 HPAC calendar. This is a hugely important publication for HPAC.

Looking for: Paragliding or Hang Gliding images from across Canada; images showing both wing types in a single shot would be most welcome.

Format: Landscape orientation, high resolution, with name of pilot, photographer, and location if available.

Deadline: Extended to September 25th

If you have any questions, don’t hesitate to ask.
Douglas Noblet, Wild Air Photography

2nd National Meeting Of CSI

A national syllabus for the H2/P2 course, national standards and syllabus for the Instructor Certification course and Tandem Endorsement course, and an HPAC instructor code of conduct are the agenda items for a three-day Senior Instructor meeting later this fall. Following the CSI’s (Council of Senior Instructors) successful comprehensive overhaul of HPAC’s rating system in 2012, this session will be focused on setting the highest standards for our sport in the interest of quality instruction, safety and risk management. A survey of all current instructors and tandem pilots will precede this meeting in order to capture the input and expertise of those who have gone through instructor certification and tandem endorsement.

Aerodrome Legislation Update

Nick Jones, HPAC Director, Ontario

A concentrated comment campaign by HPAC and other aviation organizations has resulted in several important changes in the proposed legislation currently under final review and soon to be implemented. The changes that most directly affect HPAC are:

  1. The definition of excluded “Ad-Hoc” aerodromes has been changed to encompass locations used for not more than 90 calendar days in a year v.s. 30 days in the draft regulation. This is not a block of 90 consecutive days, but 90 individual flying days. Many launches and LZs are used fewer than 90 days in a year and are therefore exempt from this new regulation. The justification for this change referenced HPAC’s request for an increase to 180 days and is almost certainly due to HPAC’s efforts.
  2. “Aerodrome work” is now defined as a) construction of a new aerodrome or b) construction of new runways or extension of runway length by 100m or 10%. Of these only construction of a new aerodrome could possibly apply to our sites. Existing launches and LZ’s typically have no “runways” to extend. Furthermore the term “construction” is not defined and it is likely reasonable to conclude that any activity not requiring a building or similar permit from a local authority is not “construction”. It would be quite a stretch to define cutting grass and shrubbery as “construction”.
  3. The process for sites not excluded above, and more than 4km from the built-up area of a city or town, now includes only notification to Transport Canada, Nav Canada, operator of any airport within 30 nautical miles, the authority responsible for any protected area within 4km of the site and the landowner of any land bordering the site. Note: this has changed from “consultation” to “notification”. And this still only applies to construction of a new site intended for use more than 90 calendar days in a year. Furthermore by specifically referencing “the built up area of a city or town” this relaxed process likely applies to sites in proximity to built up areas that are not part of cities or towns.
  4. Only sites intended for use more than 90 calendar days of the year and where “construction” is to take place within 4km of a city or town still require a public consultation process.

To review the draft regulation refer to:

Thanks to Andre Nadeau, HPAC’s Transport Canada Liaison, and all of the HPAC members who took the time to submit comments.

* Note, text in italics are the opinions and/or inferences of the author and not a legal opinion or interpretation of the legislation.

Nick Jones, HPAC Director, Ontario

Speedflying Endorsements On Hold

Due to safety concerns, the HPAC is putting further endorsements for speed flying on hold. Concerns relate to the lack of certified instructors and curriculum, and the recent second fatality in two years in BC. HPAC will study its relationship with the emerging sport and report back to the members in due course.

Two New Master Ratings Awarded 2015

Congratulations go out to two new Master-rated pilots, Hang Glider pilots Ross Hunter of Calgary and Randy Rauck of Lumby, BC. The Master rating awarded by the Board of Directors is the highest rating in our sport. It is a distinction awarded to pilots who have not only excelled as pilots, but who have also been strong citizens and volunteers in our Association as well as their local clubs. The criteria for a Master rating can be seen at SOP 410.

Other HPAC awards for 2015: Congratulations to all!
Solid Ground Award to Landowners Bert Duncan, Harrison Mills, BC, Produits d’Antoine, Saint-Antoine-sur-Richelieu, QC, and John McIsaac, Canmore, AB, for their indispensable provision of valued flying sites.
Michael Robertson Instructor of the Year Award to Jacques Blanchet, Saint-Antoine-sur-Richelieu, QC, for excellence in instruction at his school Voiles 4 Saisons.
Cliff Kakish Award to Nicole McLearn for outstanding volunteer service as HPAC Competition Chair.
Jamie Christensen Memorial Award to Will Gadd for long-term achievement and advocacy for the sport of hang gliding and paragliding worldwide.

The NTSS top rankings for 2015 for hang gliding and paragliding in Canada will be announced later this fall.

Paramotors And HPAC

Pilots frequently call the HPAC Office asking whether or not our HPAC insurance covers third party liability for paramotoring. It does not. Paramotors fall in the classification of ultralight, a completely separate category of aircraft under Transport Canada.

Members who are learning paramotoring are recommended to take instruction only from Transport-Canada certified ultralight instructors to attain a license, which is required under Transport Canada regulations, regardless of where the paramotor is flown. Pilots can seek information for ultralight insurance from The UltraLight Pilots Association of Canada (

HPAC Annual General Meeting Online

September 18 – September 27, 2015

The Annual Meeting of our Association gets underway Saturday September 5. Members are asked to please log into the site at and there will be a direct link right on the homepage to the Forum and our AGM. As this is a member-driven Association, your votes on the budget and other issues are of critical importance. Please contact the Office if you should have any difficulty accessing the AGM and we will help (

Memories of Yamaska 2014

Now that our season is slowly drawing to a close in parts of Canada, here is a great memory of Yamaska, which is where the 2014 PG Nationals were held, as recorded by a visiting pilot from the USA, Davidson Da Silva and friends from Boston. We are always happy to welcome our visitors to our beautiful flying sites in Canada.

Regional Elections in 2014

In 2014 the following regions will be electing, or renewing, the Board members representing that region: Saskatchewan, Ontario, Atlantic Canada, BC. The process is underway to determine whether incumbents are intending to let their names stand again and for elections to be held.

Please contact the Office if you have any questions regarding this process.

HPAC 2014 Awards

Randy Parkin: Cliff Kakish Award for Outstanding Volunteer Service to the Sports of Hang Gliding and Paragliding in Canada

Michael Fuller: Jamie Christensen Memorial Award in Recognition of Long-Term Achievement

Doug T. Nitchie: The Solid Ground Award for Excellence and Creativity in the Development and Protection of Flying Sites

Eric Olivier: The Michael Robertson Instructor of the Year Award

Other awards for 2014 will be announced in the next Newsletter.

Women in Aviation

March 3-9th, 2014 marked the 4th annual Women of Aviation Worldwide Week.  This event celebrates the anniversary of the first woman pilot license being issued, with the purpose of introducing more women to flight and aviation-related careers.

As a female running my own paragliding business I wanted to participate, so last year I held a draw for a free instructional tandem flight to introduce a woman to paragliding. It was a big success, so this year I wanted to do even more!  In addition to the draw I contacted “Girls Fly 2-The Sky’s No Limit” who were organizing an event at the Langley Airport over the weekend of March 8 & 9.

From information on joining the Coast Guard and SAR to interactive displays from UFV that allowed girls to “build” airplane parts, the event had more to offer than just the free flights. Yes, that’s right…the event offered free flights to women and girls who had never been in a small plane or helicopter before! The smiles that weekend were huge with lots of girls begging to go for another flight. The organizers had provided a space for me so I could show another form of aviation – paragliding!

I brought an old kiting wing & had it bunched up so the participants could check out a paraglider first hand, although the fixed wing pilots shuddered at the “tiny strings” that hold us up in the air! Surprisingly the biggest hit was the harness I had brought along. Everyone wanted to try it on and run around, with lots of kids asking their parents to take a picture of them “paragliding”. It was a super fun weekend, and a great opportunity to talk about our sport as well as book tandem flights and lessons for the Moms & Dads. Thanks to events like this we can provide more positive exposure to our favourite sports…I’m already brainstorming new ideas for the event in 2015!

Martina Lang
Owner and HPAC Instructor

Different but Good: HPAC Membership Cards

The HPAC Office is no longer sending out the old laminated cards that came with every membership renewal. This decision had to be made due to the following: in 2013 the HPAC Office produced over 4,000 cards (each new membership or renewal, or new rating, or renewed First Aid or new HAGAR, etc. triggered a new membership card); the manual labour to produce the cards is excessive, supplies and postage are hugely expensive. It is not a good use of HPAC resources to continue with this process.

In addition, members had requested that their cards be available to them electronically so that all additional ratings or membership renewals would be available to them right away on line.

HPAC now has an all-electronic system: After you renew yourself on the HPAC website, you will automatically be sent your new membership card, showing your new expiry date. You can save that e-mail on your smartphone, if you wish, or print it out and make as many copies as you like. (If you should not receive that automatic e-mail, please contact the HPAC Office.)

As well, you can at any time go to and log in, and right on the homepage, under the Join/Renew Quick Link, you will see “My Membership Card”. Click there and your card pops right up.

HPAC will be producing a permanent card this fall, that shows your lifetime membership number but still will require login to the site to get your current membership and ratings status.

Please call me if you need any additional information.