Paragliding Pilots of India - Gautam Sud, 20yrs, Chandigarh
Updated: Jul 23, 2022
Gautam Sud is a student at Ashoka University and someone who is constantly seeking thrill. He is a paraglider, skier and scuba diver, to name a few. His paragliding adventure began in Bir Billing, and he is thirsty for more!
AP Quick 3-
1. The first place you paraglided - Manali
2. Your go-to paraglide place in India - Bir
3. Your bucket list of paragliding destinationss in the world - The Alps
AP: When did you first learn about paragliding? What got you interested in the sport?
Gautam: I’m a bit of an adrenaline junkie and paragliding was still on my list as of 2019 and I really wanted to give it a shot. So I took courses and even did a few free flights. However, I’ve done many tandem flights before.
AP: Who do you usually go paragliding with?
Gautam: I usually go on most of my adventures with my brother.
AP: Did you find the sport challenging?
Gautam: Physically, paragliding is an endurance sport because a flight can be as short as 5-20 minutes and as long as a few hours! So the shorter trips are less exhausting and that’s mostly what I’ve been doing. Mentally, you have to stay really calm and read the weather.
AP: Do you have any favorite moments from your paragliding trips?
Gautam: Yes of course. My second free flight had this vicious crosswind that came out of nowhere during takeoff. I didn’t manage to roll my glider to compensate for the crosswind and was really lucky to have not crashed into this rock face. I must’ve missed it by 2-3 metres but it felt like I just scraped by! I was hyperventilating the whole time till I landed.
AP: We’d love to hear about a memorable experience you had during your glides.
Gautam: My most memorable trip has got to be Bir. Although the winds during the off-season can be challenging, your first solo flight is always the most memorable! Seeing the ground grow smaller as you take to the air is incredible to say the least.
AP: Till when in the future do you see yourself paragliding?
Gautam: It’s a really fun activity that’s also very close to my home. I can always go on the weekends.
AP: What would be some advice you’d give someone who’s just starting out?
Gautam: Paragliding is challenging and safety always comes first. However, once you get the hang of it, it’s the most amazing sport! You can just float through the air without a care in the world!
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