Cross Country Magazine Tuesday Tip

This week's tip is the third in a mini-series from Brett Janaway, world record holder and paragliding guide.

Fool's Lift

When conditions are weak you often have to take any lift that is available.

So often though I see pilots slowly sink out as they turn in what they believe to be lift, only to be decked shortly afterwards.

This is what I call Fool's Lift. You think you're going up, but in fact you're slowly sinking.

To avoid this, when your instrument starts beeping make sure you glance at your altitude and memorise the figure.

After a few turns in the thermal or beats of the ridge, listening to the tones of the vario, check your height again and make sure you did actually gain.

It is easy to believe that the lift in half the turn exists for the whole turn when in fact the sinky parts of the 'climb' are stronger.

If you find you are thermalling in fool's lift, move on!

Find Brett at

That elusive thermal
Don't be fooled – in weak lift look at the numbers to make sure you are climbing.