Up, up and away for Rob

WHAT a weekend for taking to the air.

Woolgoolga resident Robert Mylchreest definitely thought so.

Robert, 51, braved the airwaves at Woolgoolga headland on Saturday in his paraglider.

Robert, who is also a conventional aircraft pilot, believes a number of Coffs Coast locals are taking to the sport which is simpler and 'less hard work' than hang-gliding, as well as safer.

"The best spot around here is Minnie Water," he said.

"Where there is about one kilometre of clifftop where we can fly."

Robert said they can't fly closer to Coffs Harbour because of restrictions around the airport, and although there are ideal locations on the coastal hills, "Private property owners worry about the insurance liabilities."

He said the biggest safety issue occurs if he accidentally is blown behind the slope where he is flying.

"The resulting turbulence can dump you hard on the ground," he said.

One advantage of paragliding is the aircraft can be rolled up into the backpack which doubles as the seat hanging below the parachute-like wing.

"This allows you to be more mobile and fly without a back-up crew, and you can walk back to your vehicle unaided."



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