Cadets soar with flying club

Vancouver Soaring Association offers chance for cadets to fly

Off they go into the wild blue yonder, climbing high into the sun…is the concept behind the Air Cadet League of Canada’s partnership with the Vancouver Soaring Association at Hope Airport.

The six best air cadet pilots in the province are in town to test their skills against Hope’s challenging terrain.

Wind funneling in from the sea and into the valley rushes along the region’s mountain ridge-lines making conditions in Hope perfect for soaring. Primary and secondary “waves” undulating over mountains give rise to air pockets keeping gliders aloft.

“Cadets don’t normally get to soar for an hour like they do [here],” VSA president James Swank said.

The VSA is providing cadets the use of its aircraft. The gliders used by the cadets at bases in places such as Comox are primary for straight and up and downs and don’t lend themselves to soaring. Flights in Hope with VSA aircraft may last as long as five hours with pilots reaching heights of 10,000 feet.

“The cadet commander was in the air for seven and a half hours the other day,” Swank said.

Pilots also work on becoming more technically proficient in Hope.

The mountainous terrain, close proximity to town and restrictions placed on pilots due to the physical geography enhance their skill-set.

But getting here meant the air cadets earned their way in. All of them went above and beyond the call of duty.

Sergeant Paul Heim, 16, of Prince George’s squadron 396 made top honours to earn his ticket. He’s excited about gliding.

“It’s magical,” he said.

His mother and father were in the air cadets but didn’t pursue a career in the military. Scared when he made his first glider flight Heim now has Royal Canadian Air Force fighter pilot ambitions.

For Heim and his fellow cadets the chance to push themselves physically and mentally is paramount to their success. For the soaring association the goal is to promote soaring.

But both organizations agree on having wind beneath their wings.

Just Posted

LETTER: Why is Jati Sidhu ashamed of his riding?

Lytton’s Christopher di Armani shares his dismay at the potential name change of the MP’s riding

Fraser-Cascade School Board votes to invest in protecting the future of its students’ hearing

Decibel monitors to be installed in secondary schools’ machine shops as a visual guide

Kent-Harrison Foundation celebrates 25 years

The foundation started in 1994 on the promise of a two-for-one donation deal

Bucket-list flight for Chilliwack grandmother

Hampton House resident treated to a beautiful plane ride in Moments that Matter

Lagoon improvements, but no safety audit recommendations, coming to Harrison

The lagoon will see electrical upgrades, a new flag pole and fencing, but no life jackets or signs

Harrison Hot Springs students bring ‘Twelfth Night’ to life

The adaption of Shakespeare’s classic comedy include songs and phrases from Canada’s east coast

Judges on Twitter? Ethical guidance for those on the bench under review

Canadian judges involvement in community life are among issues under review

Trudeau calls May 6 byelection for B.C. riding of Nanaimo-Ladysmith

The riding opened up when Sheila Malcolmson resigned in January

VIDEO: Vancouver fall to Seattle in Game 2 of the playoffs

Thunderbirds topple the Giants 4-1 in Langley, evening the Western Conference series one game each

Calgary captain has 3 points as Flames torch Canucks 3-1

Giordano leads way as Alberta side cracks 100-point plateau

Fraser Valley Bandits draft Abbotsford’s Joel Friesen first overall

Professional basketball team reveals 13 players selected at CEBL draft

1,300 cruise ship passengers rescued by helicopter amid storm off Norway’s coast

Rescue teams with helicopters and boats were sent to evacuate the cruise ship under extremely difficult circumstances

Province announces $18.6 million for B.C. Search and Rescue

The funding, spread over three years, to pay for operations, equipment, and training

Vancouver-bound transit bus involved in fatal crash near Seattle

One man was killed and a woman injured in crash with bus purchased by TransLink

Most Read