Cavite : Powered Paragliding in the Philippines
Powered Paragliding or Paramotoring is a motorized version of the sport: paragliding. Most useful in terrain with less or no elevations or high points, the motor worn by the paramotor pilot allows him to fly without having to drop from a high area.
The Philippines, blessed with calm cool winds during November to February, is a haven for paragliding / paramotoring enthusiasts.
We met Sir Buko who showed us how it is done. We met first at a gas station along the expressway and I was sorry for the delay. Because of it, he was a little skeptic in paramotoring because it is nearing noon and the sun is high up. Turns out that the wind gets stronger as the sun goes higher. We went to the location though - hoping that he would agree to fly.
We took videos as he began to set up the motor, the parachute and GoPros and his gear. He is the only air sports expert I know of here in the Philippines
Up, up and away!
We were blessed to have a short drizzle of rain which Sir Buko said was able to calm the winds a little bit. If it weren't for the rain, he will not fly. Paragliding/ paramotoring pilots need to respect nature after all. Hindi yung basta mo lang gustong lumipad, sige ka ng sige. Check first with nature if it is safe to fly, only then should one fly...
Without having to jump from a cliff, Sir Buko ran fast and the propeller behind him lifted him and the parachute off...
He went as high up as a 300 storey building and as low as a basketball ring - it is another notable difference between paragliding and paramotoring - being able to control one's height without being dependent on the wind. Some prefer paragliding though becuase it will take really good skills n maneuvering and reading the wind... others prefer paramotoring because of the speed and less limitations...
The only way to judge is to try it!