In July 2016 SkySchool MD Alex Ledger led a small team on an epic adventure from John O'Groats to Lands End. The pilots included double amputee Cayle Royce MBE, James Borges, an Icarus Trophy competitor, and Jake Holland, a Paraglider pilot/camera man who only learned to Paramotor with us the week before! They were supported by SkySchool Instructor Rob Furnival and James' girlfriend Juliet Luffman. The trip had been scheduled for early August however the forecast was so bad the dates were brought forward by 10 days. The team duly rushed north to be blessed with perfect flying conditions which they took full advantage of.
John O'Groats to Lands End in 7 Days
The Pilots departed John O'Groats around mid day on Thursday 21st July and flew 184k down the east coast in 4 hours and 4 flights all the way down to Tomatin, south of Inverness. Day 2 was delayed by strong winds however when conditions improved they were fortunate enough to fly over the breathtaking Cairngorm mountain range. In doing so they flew 144k in 3 hours and 2 flights ending up just north of Stirling. Day 3 was the longest and most technical day of flying any of the team had ever experienced. They flew more than 400k in 8 hours and 5 flights during which they navigated around Glasgow and Manchester airspace before finally landing at Seighford Gliding Club south of Stoke on Trent, a truly awesome day of flying! Day 4 started well with an 80k flight to Worcester but due to the weather they only made it as far as Cheltenham, completing a total of 108k in 2 flights. Day 5 started with a good sunrise flight down to Bristol. When the wind picked up they thought the day was over however once past the Bristol Channel conditions improved allowing them to make it down to Dartmoor where they were finally grounded by rain having completed 192k in 3 flights. Day 6 was frustrating due to constant rain however the clouds finally parted allowing them to fly 50k to Bodmin Moor where they were again forced to take shelter from the unpredictable weather. Day 7 was their last opportunity to complete the journey as the forecast was terrible. Fortunately the conditions cleared up in the afternoon and after a refuel near St Agnes they flew into Lands End in perfect conditions arriving around 9pm on Wednesday 27th July. In total they took less than 7 days to fly a total of 1200k, in doing so Cayle Royce became the first double amputee to complete the journey in a ParaTrike. ITV West Country News have already reported on this amazing achievement and a film of the trip is currently under production so watch this space!
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