Day 1: Saturday June 26, 2004Big Air Xpedition Team Members:
Arrived to my long time great friends Antoine and Nadine Desvallee's new hotel "Residence Florimontane" around 8 p.m. The Paragliding World Cup in Tallories-Annecy has just ended today so Antoine, Len, and I went and partied with everyone at the PWC party. It had been quite a long time since my last visit of Annecy in 1999.
Day 2: Sunday June 27, 2004.
"Dents de Lanfon" early morning is beautiful as usual. From Florimontane hotel, we can check out the condition of Planfait easily from our room. There isn't much thermals today so Len and I hiked up to Montmin. Antoine and I did a quick flight from "Planfait" and headed home for dinner with friends.
Day 3: Monday June 28, 2004
Today Nicolas (Antoine's son 14yrs) and his friend are going to take paragliding courses for the whole week. By noon, we got about 5 gliders up in the air in front of Planfait. Flying condition is getting better. Hopefully we can do some crosscountry flying soon...Len and I made it up to the top of Dents de Lanfon. We wanted to do the "Grand Tour du Lac" but on my way to Veyrier, I got shot down due to the strong N wind in the valley. Dinner in town was fantastic with frog legs, foie gras, etc.. French Cuisine rules!
Have a safe flight home Len!
Day 4: Tuesday June 29, 2004
We launched around 1 p.m. from Planfait today. Antoine was flying his Bi-Beta 2 Tandem with Victor. Together we did a "Petite Tour du Lac". Thermals were big and nice. Went swimming in the lake then mt. biked up to Planfait.
Day 5: Wednesday June 30, 2004
Pascal Piazzalunga, the owner of www.Directicime, is a pure xtreme man. Antoine, another Pascal Eymayard, Pascal P., and I went for a speed xtreme canyoning this morning. We did the course (normally would be 3 hours) in less than an hour. We were jumping, sliding, and running crazy through the canyon.
Here are some pictures. This afternoon, we all are going up in 2 tandem gliders. I will have some videos for you to watch of Pascal E. free fall jumping from the Tandem Glider. Go XtremeBigAir!
Video Clip of Antoine D. and Kinsley W. at Montmin
Video Clip of Pascal's free fall from Tandem glider pilot by Pascal P.
Day 6: Thursday July 01, 2004
Nicolas and Victor flew solo for the first time today at Cote de la Forclaz. They were xtremely excited. Antoine and I drove up to Le Semnoz, another great flying site and kitesnowing place. The wind was light and the sky was very cloudy so there were no thermals. We stopped by Doussard in the afternoon and Antoine made great progress with kitesurfing training. He is ready to get in the water.
Day 7 : Friday July 02, 2004
Another cloudy day in the morning so Antoine and I took the bus from Annecy up to Le Semnoz. We rode our mt. bikes down from the top of Le Semnoz through the bones jarring mt. biking trail of Le Semnoz. Highly recommended that you have a full gear protection for this trail. Otherwise, just ride on the paved road and you will fly down at mach 3. At Annecy, couple of the kids were jumping off the bridge into the canal, it reminded me of those fun summer days of my early teenage year. This afternoon, flying condition improved so we hurried to Cote de la Forclaz. Half way up there we saw the big clouds, so we went back down to Planfait. Antoine launched tandem with his son Nicolas. We got no thermals, just a nice smooth flight down to the landing zone.
Day 8: Saturday July 03, 2004
We went over to Doussard and got some more Kiteboarding for Antoine. This afternoon, I launched off Planfait. Flying around a little bit, there were not much of thermals. No XC today.
Day 8 : Sunday July 04, 2004
We went wakeboarding early this morning with Pascal E.
We will leave for south of France this afternoon...
Arrrived to Marseillan near Montpellier. Nice xtremely long stretch of beach on the Mediterannean with no waves. Lots of visitors. This town, Marseillan, reminds me of Venice Beach with tons of tourists and cheap vendors but great food!
Day 9: Monday July 05, 2004
Arrived to La Franqui, Leucate. Antoine got up and riding in light wind with the 13M Wave EH kite. It was a good day. Nicholas is almost ready to get in the water.
Day 10: Tuesday July 06, 2004
No wind today anywhere. We visited Raphael Salles of F-One and had lunch with the F-One office. Explored a kitesurfing spot at L'Esprignett in Montpellier. Then we visited the Aigues-Mortes Castle. Our dinner at "All you can eat Paella" in Marseillan was excellent!
Day 11: Wednesday July 07, 2004
16M wind at La Franqui, Leucate. Qualifier contest for King of the Air opens today. Wind switched from starboard to the normal portack. We got Nicholas in the water with the 13M. Antoine then went out on the 13M. I tried a few runs and the wind died. We left for Annecy in the afternoon.
Day 12: Thursday July 08, 2004
Strong wind, big clouds, thunder storms had been dominated Annecy during the past three days. Today we have lots of rain and cool temp. here in Annecy. A cool night here in Annecy is just perfect for a Raclett dinner. Claire is with her friends so Nadine, Nicolas, Antoine and I, we all went to Raclett dinner at this very special restaurant "La Ferme de Charboniere" in Menthon which is a few minutes from hotel Florimontane. On a cold night, you must have dinner at this restaurant! Declicious food, cheese, wine, and ambiance. Tonight we talked about our future trip to the South East coast of France where there are wind and waves! Thank You so much Antoine and Nadine!!!!
Day 13: Friday July 09, 2004
Time to head home - Not really look forward to the long flight from Geneva to LAX.
Kinsley ThomasWong is a USHGA rated Advanced Tandem Instructor Pilot and founder of Xtreme Big Air and Big Air Paragliding. He has traveled extensively around the world: Australia, New Zealand, Ecuador, Hawaii, Costa Rica, China, Swizertland, Mexico, and France. This is a FUN, SAFE, and QUALITY action packed xpedition trip of a lifetime in Annecy, the mecca of the Paragliding world.
Antoine Desvallee is a Top Competition - class A and French Tandem rated Pilot with 16 years of paragliding experience in France. Antoine speaks four different languages: French, English, German, and Italian. Antoine is also the owner of Florimontane, a brand new hotel/apartment about 200 meters from the Landing Zone and Planfait flying site in Annecy Lake.