Paragliding competition in Pokhara
A three-days long Paragliding competition
started in Pokhara on Wednesday (January 19, 2005). A total of 44 paragliders
from 14 different nations have participated in the competition, including three
women, 37 foreigners and eight Nepali pilots.
Ten of the pilots are from France, seven from Germany, four from Switserland,
four from the UK and three from Canada.
Meanwhile, the USA, The Netherlands,
Ireland, Italy, Russia, Sweden and Denmark each have one participant. There
are also two competitors from neighboring India.
The participants all take off from the hill of Sarangkot, a popular tourist
destination north of the Pokhara valley, to the tune of the panche baja
(music from five traditional folk instruments). They then soar the skies of
Pokhara for almost three hours displaying the colorful chutes before landing
at the shores of the majestic Fewa Lake.
The race is billed Cross Country. Before actually
racing for the distance, the particpants meander in the air for sometime after
taking off from Gothadi in Sarangkot, which lies at an altitude of 1400 meters.
Five judges for the competition are spread in the take-off area, the landing
zone, and even the air itself. And very ingeniously, an egg had been placed
inside a circle in the landing area to make things even more fun. Paragliders
who manage to break it get the maximum points. The scores are awarded on the
basis of speed, distance, height and the status of the egg, informed Tikaram
Sapkota of the organizing committee.
Only Oli Miller from Germany managed to break the all-important egg on the first
day of the competition, while four other participants managed to land inside the
circle. The rest ended up on the shores of the lake. "But all the participant
had a lot of fun,"maintains Tikaram Sapkota, "This competition had helped to
promote Pokhara as a destination for adventure sports".
Bianca Blomberger, 23, a participant from Germany opined that Sarangkot was a
very beautiful place for paragliding. She had also taken part in last year's
Sarangkot is one of the five most popular destinations for paragliding in the
world. The others include the Rocky Mountains of the Americas, the Deserts of
Australia, the French Alps and the Atlas Mountain in Morocco.
The Sarangkot flight is especially popular with tourists because it provides a
spectacular view of the mountains, the surrounding hills, the Pokhara valley,
Fewa lake and other rivers and streams.
"The fall was pretty intimidating in the first days but after a while you really
feel like something's wrong if you don't paraglide for a single day", explains
Nepali paraglider Anil Gurung. "The thrill of flying and the beauty of the
landscape are all so alluring".
The organizers have been organizing similar paragliding competitions in Pokhara
for the last six years. Surprisingly, the participation has been the largest
"We're trying to attract the tourists not by just showing off the mountains but
also by promoting Pokhara as a destination for such fun sports, as paragliding"
says Basanta Raj Dawadi of Trekking Association of Nepal (TAN) Western Regional
Chapter, the organizer.
18 december 2004 - 29 januari 2005 -
Terug in Kathmandu / fietsen naar
Sundarijal / Balaju-park
24 november - 17 december 2004 -
Streetdance / Bungamati & Khokana / goede doel
6 november - 23 november -
23 oktober - 5 november 2004 -
Changu Narayan, Phutung, Pokhara
5 oktober - 12 oktober 2004
4 Dashain/ Tihar festivals / borrel ambassade / Chobhar kloof / Nagarjun
28 september - 5 oktober 2004 -
Verslag week 3
(Nepalese taalles, lezing Lama Rimpoche, Budhanilkantha, computerlessen in
21 - 28 september 2004 -
Verslag 2 - o.a. Bouddhanath,
Kirtipur en Indra Jatra festival
15 -21 september 2004 -
Verslag 1 - o.a. aankomst in Nepal,
Swayambhunath en kinderhuis
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