Episode 12 of our European Overland trip 2020
For those who prefer the vlog, it’s at the bottom 😉
We entered Austria with steam and trouble. We had parked for the night on an empty parkingarea of the ski resort in Obertauern. Just before reaching the Katschberg Pass steam came out from under the bonnet and Koos immediately stopped the truck. A small stopper on a tube was torn open and the cooling system almost ran dry. After fixing it we were able to refill the cooling system with plain water and we could continue our trip to Greifenburg, in the Upper Drau Valley. Thank god for that.
We have been coming to the Fliegercamp in Greifenburg for more than 20 years. I (Daphne) made my first XC flight of 10 km (!) here in 1997. I had bought my first mobile phone for the occassion, just in case I made it outside the comfortzone of the campsite that had been open for just a couple of years. It was the time that we were all wondering why on earth one needed a mobile phone…
We have seen the campsite grow over the years and we have flown many competitions (Womens World 2004, European 2008 and many Dutch Open competitions) here. You can fly from here to Italy and Slovenia and back if the conditions are great. Otherwise, it’s a lot of fun just cruising up and down the valley. There are landingfields everywhere and you can even take the train back (not with a hang glider of course ;-)).
We got a nice and convenient place at the edge of the landingfield. There is always something going on (schools and free pilots), it’s just great to land next to the truck and there is plenty of room for friends to drop in! We had planned to fly here with our friends Carolien and Edgar for the next 2 weeks and start our trip together here in Carinthia.
You can take the shuttle which takes you up to the launch areas of the Emberger Alm. There are 3 launch areas at 1740 m, 1950 m and 2000 m ranging from E to SSW. Even with north wind you can launch, but you have to know your way around! We prefer the 1740 m launch which gives you 1100 m of height difference and has the convenience of a small bar (unfortunately they have replaced the great coffee and apfelstrudel for a vending machine) and toilets. But depending upon the wind direction we sometimes walk up the last couple hundred meters.
For us it’s also always an opportunity to meet friends, because most of the Dutch hang- and paragliders come here. You’re never alone and you can always fly with friends.
On the second night of our stay Carolien and Edgar arrived at midnight and we had guests in our camper for the first time! The next morning they set up their tent… very amusing to see!
We make a couple of flights from the Emberger Alm together. First we go on a tour to the east as we want to fly over the amazing Weissensee.