The Cuban Federation of Free Flight announces the national cuban Paragliding Championship. It will take place in Guisa (Granma) from 24. – 31. March 2018. The flight area is known as one of the best zones for free flight in the country. Most locals are well known for their more than average flying abilities. The area is located in the hottest province of Cuba, where thermal activity is quite strong. This might be the reason that the biggest distances in Cross Country regarding XC on Cuba had been achieved in that very same region. Latest competitions proof that the PG Club of Guisa was able to list several of its pilots amongst the 10 best of the country in the rankings. Some of them occupying the winners' podium over the years.
If you plan to visit Cuba for the first time as a pilot, this is a very good opportunity, since it will allow you to reach several goals simultaneously:
flying with the best pilots in Cuba
make new friends
learn to know a new flight area
work yourself into culture and history of the city of Bayamo
The city got many interesting options during daytime in case it is not possible to fly because of nasty weather conditions. Foreign guests are warmly welcome. An international pilot needs to comply to the regulations in order to participate in the championship, wether it be a competitor or guest. It is necessary to have an up-to- date license, of category P-3 or above equivalent level. Complete equipment for flying purposes including the standard addon for safety purposes. The detailed regulation of the local competition will be made public during the initial briefing. Or if you want, I can send it by e-mail to consult the committee to give an advance preview in Spanish language.
With an overall altitude of just a little more than 70 meters, the takeoff Corralillo can be reached taking a little walk from the highway, takeoff-area is ample, with a nice inclination and enough room to unfold two wings at the same time. There are a multitude of landing possibilities in front of the take-off, from which it is easy to ascent to the take-off area one more time. The take-off has a northeast orientation. The predominant passat wind is getting in from that direction, hitting the hills stretching out for 2km. Cloud tops reaching between 1500 and 2000 meters' height thermal activity might usually range between the +4 and +6 m/s lift, although one can get stronger lift at times.
Clearance for competition will be granted to use an air space of 45km by 18km. 23 waypoints will be located at the leeward side of the take-off and 6 windward. Sleeves are developed mostly to leeward, with zigzag turn points and certain turns for further complexity. Projected we could end up with a simple task of 25km, up to the most complex with about the 50km. Of course task setting depends on weather conditions. Task validation will be done by GPS track analysis calculation using FAI rules.
The coordinates of the take off are: Corralillo Take-off: D01_CORRALILLO 20.243577ºN 76.508792ºW
In the following ones you can see some details of the area. YouTube holds several video clips that can be found there.
How to arrive?
It is mandatory to inscribe in the city of Bayamo March 24th. In case you arrive the 25th you are still granted the possibility to inscribe, that day the federation has set for general consults and it won't be a competition day for flying. Of course those willing to fly can go and you will be able to fly as you like. The premiation and prize giving will take place in 31st at 5:00 pm. Take those dates as reference to organize your trip and take full advantage of your stay in Cuba.
The first thing is to get a flight to Cuba, you can find several options in internet. At this time, according to internet using www.skyscanner.com the flights from Madrid to Havana are starting from the €564, alone to have a reference, from Berlin €575, with scales, and from Bogotá starting from the 450 USD. It is advisable to reserve their flight in advance, and to communicate it to the organizers so that they keep him in mind and they can support him with additional information in dependence of the Cuban airport that selects.
Bayamo is in the east of Cuba, at some 800 km of the capital. To go until there from the Havana, you have several options. It can be in bus, using the line Viazul, only authorized officially to move tourism, the price from the Havana until Bayamo is of 44 USD if the on-line pay, already can be pay it with CUC (convertible Pesos), one of the two official currencies that circulate in Cuba, below will explain this important detail. For more details, to see the web www.viazul.com Another option is by plane, it will owe to check and to reserve your flight in advance through the web www.cubana.cu because the city of Bayamo doesn`t have daily flights from the Havana. The nearest airports are Holguín, Santiago de Cuba and Manzanillo. You can also travel in adapted trucks that they cover routes from the Havana to almost all the east counties that are more economic, but not very sure. Doesn`t seek advice the train, for the complex thing of getting ticket, and for their notable low level of punctuality and security. You can also rent a car, that which is not cheap, and enough complex of achieving given the discharge demands. Several places exist in internet that can help him in it, one of them it can be www.havanautos.es
Lodging once in Bayamo, there are several lodging options. In the web www.trivago.com can be many options, as the state hotels Islazul Royalton and Islazul Sierra Maestra, which are characterized by the non-correspondence of the price with the quality of the service. I have been put up in the Sierra Maestra several times and I can say that it is not worthwhile. The best lodging options can be in the private sector, in the inns, where the service is better, and the most affordable prices. There are many options in the web es.airbnb.com starting from the 18 USD, one can reserve on-line. They can also be negotiated already being in Bayamo, we can put him in contact with the different inns of the city.
The city of Bayamo has many gastronomic options. Nevertheless, the inscription will give him the option of having breakfast, to have a snack and to have dinner with the rest of the national pilots. The quality won`t be the best, but you can save in that sense. If it didn`t end up him to satisfy, it can come to an agreement with the owners of the inns and to agree the price, some give breakfast free. There are several state restaurants of quality in the city, with very economic prices. There are also several private restaurants that, although they are more expensive than the state, same the prices are affordable and of better quality. The inscription for the foreign pilots, either as competitors or guests, will be of 60 CUC, this will guarantee the transportation services and participation in the acts of Inauguration and it closes, as well as, the delivery of maps.
To go to the flight area, the flight area is to single 20 minutes of the city of Bayamo in auto. The is many options of private and state transport in that route, in which the traffic is very flowing. Although the organization of the championship will guarantee the transportation toward and from the flight area, prioritizing the inscribed competitors, the go will be to the 8:30 am and the return to the 6:00 pm. In front of general hospital of the city of Bayamo, there is a bus stop, for you can aboard all the means of transport that they go until Guise, the price can vary between the 5 and 10 CUP (national pesos). There will always be chauffeurs that will offer him to take him by way of taxi and they will want to charge him in CUC. It is not necessary, the transport is flowed and if they consent, it is possible that they pay surcharge, that which the original price would be equal to several times. To avoid this, it is good that always walks with at least a local pilot that guides him. It will be attentive to the orientations of the organizers, because in dependence of the climate, it is possible that a different take off is used. It is important not to arrive late to the Briefing.
Double currency in Cuba they circulate two currencies officially, these they have differences of rates of change to each other. It is in convertible weight, or CUC, and the national currency, or CUP. A convertible weight (CUC) it is equal to 25 pesos national currency (CUP). Although in most of the establishments you can pay himself in CUP, there are still some, mainly those guided to the tourism, in those that pays in CUC. It is normal that in an establishment finds products with both printed prices in the label. For it is important that you knows in what currency you charges a service and their equivalent one, so that you doesn`t pay of more neither be swindled. A clear example is that the particular cars from Bayamo until Guisa cost 5 pesos national currency (CUP). If for mistake or ignorance pays 5 convertible pesos (CUC), you will have paid the price multiplied by 25, unnecessarily.
If your language is not Spanish and you doesn`t have domain of this, you will have some difficulties in the street if you walk alone, it is not common to find somebody that English dominates, much less other languages like German, for example. Nevertheless, it is not necessary to worry, in the place that you landed, you will find peoples to help you in what is necessary. The standards of security in Cuba are high, it is not necessary to worry too much, although neither it is necessary to tempt the luck and to walk for dark and lonely places.