Face to face with a griffon in a lift

As I told in the previous post, here you see the uncutted footage of a face to face situation with a vulture flying in the same thermal.

This happens more and more often to hang glider and paraglider pilots.

Unfortunately, the action cam does not allow you to notice some particular, but I can tell you that when you fly like that, with a bird like that, you watch in the eyes each other….and is something great!!!

You can notice that the bird flies in control, opposite to me (sometimes masked by my left wing) till the end of the thermal… it seems that it is gone… but he’s over me… like waiting for the glide togheter….

….and so it is!!!

In the final work I will explain very well behaviours like that to let you understand the nature of the vultures in the air and the free flying concept too.

By the way, hope you’ll enjoy this clip now.

Oh yes… I suggest you to watch in HD 😉


A difficult season

A lot of time has passed since my last post….

But… this season is really hard…

First the weather. I never saw something like this. We did not have spring!

Rainy days for months, and cold…till half of june. A demonstration is that all the free flight races in europe were canceled or had at least one or two flyable days on five.

Then in the middle of may I had an accident during a kitesurfing session. I badly compromised my right knee functionality, and in autumn I’ll need to operate it, for sure. Here’s the story of the accident if you are curious: http://alpeadriaflights.blogspot.it/2013/07/si-rivola-episodio-2-reflight-episode-2.html

But…against any expectation, I get in a good condition very fast. Good enaugh to fly again…staying very carefull during landings….

So… I shot some good ones! 🙂

This is a snapshot of a footage I’ll publish in the next days. Can you see who’s behind my keel?

sullarottadeigrifoni-2013-07-19-14h28m29s104It is a footage I will use for sure in the final work, but obviously cutted due to whole timing.

But I’ll be glad to share the uncutted version with you in the next days. I think expecially the pilots will appreciate the dance in the thermal with a vulture and the glide we made togheter before separation on tifferent targets.

The season is on again!

Hi everybody!

So finally, after a very long winter, the season is started again!!!

…and we are back in the sky!!


Due to the long winter and to the great amount of snow we had in our area, we had just few flyable days in this cold season.

We are not so used too, because in the previous years our region was characterized by dryier winters with a lot of flying days.

Some take offs in southern Julian alps were closed by the snow too…. so… no flights… no footages…. freezed project… :\

I still need to capture some interesting behaviours that the griffons have, and that I saw many times flying with them..  but…. one thing is to see it… another is to catch it with a camera and in a good way.

Ooohhh… How many times I desired to have a tool to recorSAMSUNGd what my eyes saw…. 🙂

But I don’t surrender!!! 🙂 I know that soon we’ll catch the right moment, in the right place…. and will be a great reward for all the previous attempts…

So, as I said… the good season is back, and in the previous days I met in the air some griffons on the slovenian ridges. They were going north, direction Gemona… probably coming from Cres island in Croatia, were there are the endemic colonies.

Then few days ago I went to Gemona to see how is the situation. The area is in a great condition to fly. The sky is full of griffons and the take offs for us, flying humans, are quite all reachable.

So in the next days we’ll have a mission there.

Lucio will fly his Niviuk Takoo biplace with an operator and ,togheter with other pilots, we’ll fly those wonderfull territories to have good filmings and to catch the perfect moment with the griffons!


So, crossed fingers, and wish us good luck! 😉

Some news from the filming missions

So I give you some updates regarding the production process of the documentary.

In the last two months the main problem I had was to make the 3rd person filmings with the support of an other wing, a tandem paraglider.

Some tandem pilots that gave me collaboration in fact, for one reason or another were not available in the days we decided to go for the missions. To find free the film maker (tandem passenger) in the same days was difficult too…. if you want you can add the weather that we know is quite impredictable in those times…so… we had very few missions of that kind.

But I was lucky in the last weeks because a Niviuk costumer bought the Takoo 2, the wing that Infinityfly gave me to help the project, and he’s very interested in flying the Gemona area that he likes a lot and doesn’t know so much, helping me in the meanwhile with the project.

So me and Lucio Bortoletti, the name of the tandem pilot, yesterday we tryied a flight to know better each other on the ground and in the air.

The day was really positive. I liked his way of flying and abilities to gain height. The Takoo2 made a great work too. In fact is a wing with a good glide and climbs in a smooth way on the ridges. That permits to the film maker to shoot in stable conditions mantaining for long periods the same perspective.

Then i had some great days of filmings in the natural reserve of Cornino, the fulcrum of the Progetto Grifone (Griffon Project). Here the reintroduction of this great vulture started in the first part nineties.

But I’ll write more about in later posts.

Here, I had as a special guide the technical and scientifical responsible of the reserve, Fulvio Genero.

I visited the feeding area from the ground and from above, making some very good footages. This reserve is a must to see for who loves nature and rapax. Every day in the morning you can see hundreds of birds that come in the feeding area for the breakfast before starting they long daily journeys in the area.

I saw a juvenile griffon in the acclimatation aviary with its parents. He’s quite ready to start to fly and I’ll be probably there when they’ll leave him free to discover the world.

Will be a great emotion I guess.

This one in the picture is instead a griffon with an imprinting on the humans.

They welcomed him some years ago from a zoo, and they tryied to leave him free….

but this bird is the demonstration that an imprinted bird is quite impossible to turn in a wild bird…. he was dangerous for himself because he often was running on the roads and after humans instead living his life as a free bird….

so they made a quite big aviary for him. Now he lives protected….not free… but is the only way for him….

when you see a bird like that… immediatly you think about the stupidity of some reintroduction projects based on birds with an imprinting on humans…..

3 days of filmings

So we had 3 days with quite good weather to fly.

We planned to make footages from the ground and aerials.

During my flights I had great encounters with griffins, and I was lucky enaugh to capture on video some great and interesting moments.

This is a snapshot of a wonderfull bird that shared with me 3 thermals, following my glider for a lot of time and helping each other to find the better lifts….

Every time…. bumpheights on my skin… it’s impossible to get used to such a wonderfull moments!!!


and this is another moment in the same thermal… 🙂

New technical sponsors

I’m very proud to announce that three new sponsors will support me in the production of this project.

Thanks a lot to Flymaster for the state of the art flight instrument that they gave me and that will help me during flights on the griffins routes.

And thanks to Niviuk, a top brand in paragliding world that will help me with their wings for aerials footages.

All this is possible due to Infinityfly, an italian company that represents those brands and trust in the project, in nature and wildlife preservation.

I’m sure this collaboration will be fruitfull in the next future.

A very interesting meeting

First meeting yesterday with Fulvio Genero, the man that can be considered the father of griffons reintroduction in north eastern alps, and in other italian areas.

We shared our ideas in a sort of mini brainstorm, and I consider it a very positive approach.

It was really interesting because both we are curious, and we asked each other things about griffons behaviour in different situations. In fact, he was interested about how the birds behave in the air, and I asked him a lot of things about how they live on the ground, about their migrations and so on…

We have the same ideas about the guidelines to follow in a project like mine, and i think that we’ll have a very fruitful cooperation.

The next step will be a visit to the Cornino’s natural reserve, to make some interviews and footages of this important center.


Stay tuned