On this trip, I most enjoyed visiting the Medellin area. Smack
in the middle of Medellin – "The City of Eternal Spring" – lies
Cerro El Volador, The Hill of the Flyer. To fly there, you launch from a
huge wooden deck overlooking the city. This deck faces north into the prevailing
wind and wraps around to the east where the terrain drops off to the Medellin
River and down-town.
Landing on the deck is not advisable. Instead, the locals fly east toward
the river, then work their way up along a small ridge. Landing is then reasonably
easy with the use of spoilerons. The Mach has none, so I flew back and forth
in front and back of the ridge to bleed of speed until I could set the plane
down in a patch of grass.
Our host was Jorge Puello, a native Colombian full of boundless energy and
enthusiasm. His wife and two young children joined us on every slope trip,
and the six of us happily tooled around in his VW Thing. From the Puello
house, we had a great view across the city to Cerro El Volador, so we could
easily check if the wind was coming up; when the "chulos" (vultures)
started flying, it was time to head for the hill.