Landing With the "Impact Method"


Well, if you ever ordered to-go from a restaurant and received way too many napkins in the bag, this is exactly what happened to me here. With my flair order. Except instead of napkins, it was altitude.



Thats exactly how I dislocated my elbow and yes that was an abnormal takeoff run.

l counted at least eleven strides. Appeared there was wind?

Well, if i had gripped downtube strongly, the abrupt loss of forward momentum could have dislocated my elbow several times over. Or shoulder, or even just broke my arm. But, it is clear i had minimal grip because the whole of me was simply thrown onto the ground.

Don't really need an opposable thumb to handle control from the uprights once the hang strap and mains are tight. You can see in my launch, i'm not even holding the tubes because my thumb is up. Don't need the thumb. Just applying some pitch down pressure with the insides of my second knuckles.

On the landing, my grip was about equally relaxed, and so my body popped out the frame immediately when basetube hit the ground. If i had engaged my thumb, ie. gripped the bar, the event would have popped out my elbow instead. Or, a roll with my flair probably would have actually prompted some grip and that might then have popped my elbow. Maybe that was ETJ's case? Dunno. GoPros are ideal for diagnostics.

Imho, its not really that terrible of a landing. I've posted one worse, but by far most are better. Feedback is good and good it became a discussion, coaxed some concise pointers from Rebardan, thats a fantastic thing for me and everyone else too.

Good forum.




On the launch i had about 10mph of wind, this was 3pm at Crestline. And you can see the streamer pretty well in the slow-mo launch shot. The glider was really starting to get ahead of me at stride 8 before i let the bar out slightly to get off. And that was a Falcon 170, not some tiny double surface wing like my s2 135.  Anyway Tom Swanson reported the the exact same launch experience in the LZ.

On the landing, I think if i had my hands a little higher, and pushed faster it would have stopped the flight better. Appears to me that i more needed to "shock" the wing out of flight with a stronger or faster flair. Although, in many conditions the flair I gave would be just fine, sort of need to feel it out.


DHG dont want fly into Harsh Weather   and avoid fly into mistake day    i wait for smooth weather then  i will  going fly off my moyes litesport wing  or ultrasport wing  also ...  see you on good weather day ... 

I'm sure you know about airspeed and why you popped up so I won't get into that. From the video, there appears to be quite a bit of ground rush, and that you flared right when you got to ground level to stop the ground coming up at you. You'll see people make these slow, mushing, approach all the time and flare right when they reach the ground. This works in smooth conditions when you don't have turbulance and wind gradient to deal with. Not something you want to get in a habit of doing though. I've found what works for me is to dive in on final with plenty of extra speed, and with that extra speed I will have plenty of time to ground skim and feel what the glider is telling me. No hurry to flare right away. The first part of your flare looks good, wings level, nice smooth pushout, and good body position, just the timing is early. Once the glider started to climb you naturally would want to pull the nose back down to level off. Unfortunally, this happens just as the glider is stalling and now you're diving towards the ground. A hard flare at this point may of saved it, but, you can see your legs coming foreward at this point to brace for the impact, and that made the flare ineffective. That is one of the hardest things to train yourself not to do when the ground is coming at you. During a typical flare, you'll slowly push out the bar slightly, and if you don't rise up, push out the bar a lttle bit more. At this point, your airspeed will drop quickly so continue to push out and finish the flare in one smooth motion. Much easier to get the nose up if you keep the momentum of the flare going instead of pulling in and pushing out again. Never pull in! Also remember to hold that flare.

Yeah, the launch at CL can get tricky at times. The wind gradient gets stronger the further you go down the hill. I also suspect that there may be some rotor coming off the rocks at the bottom. That is not a good feeling when the glider is overtaking you when you're running as fast as you can.

Thanks for sharing the video. I know a lot of people are too embarassed to show their goofs but you can learn so much by watching it.

Is different for different wings. On my 135, this speed would have been about right. And the Saturn 147 needs to be flared at about this speed. ie. Weigh 155 and then wait for falcon speed\behavior to flare on the 135; its a total wheels landing.

Now, i switch back to the falcon 170...and yeah this was simply too fast for it. Hadn't flown the 170 for a while. Like i said, just need to feel it out, esp with regards to the pitch pressure.

Hands also need to be higher, for faster flare. I think i went for my new downtube grips i just added.

Salvaged it decently. Plenty of push out during the sequence. hey, didn't whack   ; ) Still have both downtubes. Sustained a spiral fracture of my ego.

fly faster final. wings level, wait for trim

Trim=hands off descending flight path.

Flare at trim w/hands at shoulder height.

five dolla pleez, Oh, wait I'm not pasa certified.

no charge.

Exactly. FFF is precisely the acronym that immediately came to mind. Except i thought it stood for F#%! F#%! F#%!. Always remember, FFF. Point taken ;)

Anyway speaking of FFF, i haven't gotten my "Free Flight Forever" t-shirt yet. That probably should have came by now. 




Well...the "Free Flight Forever" t-shirt just so happened to arrive today. Made of "ring-spun" cotton. Bet that's the best kind. Also there is 10% polyester. Nice. I'm a happy customer..


This is about the time where I would normally chime in with some wisdom about how to land, but since you just helped me splint a broken downtube, I won’t offer any advice, except…listen to Dan :)  Thanks for the help by the way

Thought you had a pretty good landing given the conditions, with a very punctual and an especially punctuated flair. Pretty close to nailing a no-step but the control frame ended up falling a bit, at an angle, hit the surface via skid, not very hard. Really quite suprised to see a broken downtube.

Anyways. For that one particular day, what happened in the Elsinore LZ did not make sense. I figure maybe that was the only one of such days.





After I made my first post I realized that it probably contained TMI and started to get a bit confusing. I too endorse Dan's brief but eloquent advice on landing.


Stay high my friends,



I side with most of the other pilots comments.

It just sometimes gets the best of us when we think it is just a little off.

Looks like you did the best under the circumstance and we learn from that which you are certainly putting forward for others to take note and learn as well.

Thanks for helping us all to to take note and keeping focus on our whole flight right till the landing. I know no tubage was involved with your latest adventure.

A Special note: In some circles of flying, some think having a spare down tube creates an unknown ora of " I must Use It or Lose it" mentality?

Rob is just a phone call away. Yes, we all have used him over the years and are very thankful for his devotion to our circumstances at the time.

Fly Safe!