The Outer Banks weather is improving, spring time is here and the event calendar is really filling up. Good example this weekend: the Mustang Spring Jam happening up in Corolla today and all weekend down in Nags Head the 42nd Annual Hang Gliding Spectacular is being held at Jockey’s Ridge State Park.
The Mustang Spring Jam is an all day thing, so we’ll have to come back to that later, but the Hang Gliding Spectacular is a great weekend event that seems to be as much about getting out on the dunes and flying hang gliders with friends as it is the actual competition.
Kitty Hawk Kites has been hosting the event since 1972—which definitely makes it the oldest hang gliding competition in the world. Actually it predates KHK by a couple of years, since the company just celebrated its 40th anniversary.
With a hard driving rain on Friday and fickle winds yesterday, it looked like competition was going to be really limited this year. But today with a light wind off the ocean, conditions were close to ideal. A breeze from the east puts the best launch site on the steepest slope of Jockey’s Ridge, giving the pilots a chance to show what they can do.
The object is to land as close as possible to a small ring in the middle of the landing zone. Many tried, only two succeeded.