Australian National Site Guide - Queensland

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Queensland - 14 sites

Map of Queensland sites
Area Sites
North Queensland 3
South Queensland 11

Queensland - North Queensland - 3 sites

Map of North Queensland sites
Name Location Type Conditions Rating Height
Eungella 75km W of Mackay. Inland ENE-SE 660m asl/ 460m agl
Area Sites
Cairns 2
Queensland - North Queensland

Eungella

Ridge- and thermic lift at the end of a U-shaped valley.

Takeoff

Watch out for the high voltage lines that rise from the valley between the caravan park and the chalet.
Chalet
HG only. Set up next to the chalet's pool before launching of the ramp.
Caravan Park
A fairly small launch. It may be worth checking the wind strength at the chalet, which is more exposed. Eungella Holiday Park (Caravan Park) 07 4958 4590.

Landing

Various paddocks along the valley road, depending on crop. Top landings at the oval may be possible - watch out for rotor and obstructions.

Queensland - North Queensland - Cairns - 2 sites

Map of Cairns sites
Name Location Type Conditions Rating Height
Gillies Lookout 40km South West of Cairns. Inland mountain range SE-NE HG Advanced / PG5 2,450ft / 750m ASL
Rex Lookout 40km N of Cairns. Coastal E-SE HG Supervised, PG4 55m / 170ft
Queensland - North Queensland - Cairns

Gillies Lookout

This site in the Gillies Range has potential for excellent cross country flights. Tricky launch, nearest bomb-out paddock 4km away. Season from Sept to Dec only. Contact club to fly here - we have a good relationship with the National Parks and don't want to jeopardise that by having people going up there and flying without permission.
Queensland - North Queensland - Cairns

Rex Lookout

Very nice soaring for hangies, ok for paragliders. Flights to Port Douglas and Mossman are relatively easy, but you must be aware of the specific pitfalls if flying north.

All pilots must be a financial member of the Cairns Hang-Gliding Club. Temporary membership available from: Kevin Gilligan (0419 773 309) Greg Newnham (0412 000 797) Daniel Keech (0427 888 893) Brett Collier (0431 151 150). Visiting pilots must be supervised and briefed by a member of the Cairns Hang Gliding Club.

Takeoff

Nice grassy launch and setup area right beside the road. Due to the need to reverse launch, the Rex is rated intermediate for PG.

Landing

On the beach about 800m to the right at the car park. Strictly no top landing for either PG or HG.

Flight

The ridge is a reasonable size, although the launch itself is quite small. If Supervised, stay south of the power line, within glide of the beach.

The Cairns Hang Gliding Club is here most weekends when the wind is on. Winter is our best flying time. That's when we get the south easterly trade winds for weeks on end. Winter is bitterly cold up here; it can drop to 24 degrees some days...

Hazards/Comments

Don't let yourself get whited out - watch for clouds forming in front and below you. Many of the local hangies fly with compasses!

Beware the southerly. The site is only flyable in a South Easterly and the further easterly, the better!

Do not fly north from the Rex unless you have flown there a few times previously, and then for at least the first flight north, be accompanied by a club member. There are some serious traps for the un-initiated on the way to Port Douglas. We have had issues with people getting themselves into situations they didn't need to be in, hence the need for caution these days.

Local Rules and safety tips
  • All visiting pilots must be supervised by a suitably experienced Cairns club member.
  • Standard flight rules apply.
  • Turn Right after launch.
  • PG and HG regularly share lift band. Be aware of different speed and turning requirements of each.
  • Clear all turns BEFORE turning.
  • Give novice pilots and students sufficient clearance at all times.
  • Conditions can change rapidly. Make sure you have enough penetration to make the beach at all times.
  • Do not fly outside of area indicated unless supervised by a suitably experienced club member.
  • The football field at base of and far right of ridge is not a landing zone.
  • No top landing.
  • HG if after takeoff you are below launch go and land at designated LZ (beach).
  • PG if unable to reach the beach due to strengthening conditions DON'T PANIC remain above launch area, if forced back from the designated area, there are several small beaches 1.4 & 2km down wind.
  • Carry a hook knife.
  • PG If force to land in the sea, turn into wind, unclip in seated position and exit just before touchdown, swim clear of glider.
  • Remember a parachute and bridle can also be used like a rope to climb down from a tree.
  • HG Always get a Hang-check prior to launch.
  • PG pilots must ensure all bystanders are clear of your wing and launch area.
  • Channel 14 UHF.

See map for landing zone and visiting pilots area.

Map information

map

Queensland - South Queensland - 11 sites

Map of South Queensland sites
Name Location Type Conditions Rating Height
Dalby Aerodrome Darling Downs South East Qld. Aerotowing 1131ft / 345m
Area Sites
Canungra 4
Sunshine Coast 6
Queensland - South Queensland

Dalby Aerodrome

Dalby Aerodrome is an unlicensed aerodrome (CTAF 126.7). It is situated in CLL FL125 airspace. Our effective ceiling is at 10'000'amsl or 8869'agl.

UHF 19 Tone Squelch 97.4 or the HGFA channels are used.

DHGC are an Aerotow Hang Gilding Club (the only known one of its type in the world). Due to the flat land black soil plains, the XC potential is enormous and offers some of the most consistent year round soaring available that you may ever find.

The club is open to aerotow endorsed pilots. A yearly competition has been held for many years and all who may wish to come and fly this soaring Mecca are welcome.

We have no knowledge or experience of any restricted/no landing areas at all. Though the 'dump Wedgie' does lay claim to some airspace.

The only other known restricted flying areas we have are those that relate to the typical airspace restrictions: and the designated military airspace at Oakey Military CTR, D652, R665, R643A, R643B, R643C being in closest proximity to the Dalby aerodrome with Toowoomba (TWB) CTAF R and the Amberley Military CTR and associated airspace also further east.

Queensland - South Queensland - Canungra - 4 sites

Map of Canungra sites
Name Location Type Conditions Rating Height
Beechmont - Rosin's Lookout Gold Coast hinterland. SSE-NE HG Supervised / PG2 1738ft/530m ASL
Flying Fox Gold Coast hinterland. N-E PG2, HG Intermediate 1990ft/606m ASL
Hinchcliffe's (Hart's, Flattop) Gold Coast hinterland. SE-S PG2, HG Intermediate 1730ft/527m ASL
Mt. Tamborine Gold Coast hinterland. NW-SW PG4; PG2 if under supervision of Instructor or Club SO. HG: Supervised 1916ft/584m ASL
Queensland - South Queensland - Canungra

Beechmont - Rosin's Lookout

The site is only to be used by CHGC pilots or visiting pilots in the company of a CHGC member.

Beechmont Launch, known as Rosin's Lookout, over-looks the stunning Numinbah Valley. The area has remained largely undeveloped in recent decades. To the east is the Springbrook plateau. On the eastern side of the valley is the Natural Bridge in Springbrook National Park and to the west lies the Lamington Plateau and the Lamington National Park. To the south is the Tweed Valley.

The Launch is adjacent to a peaceful picnic area, with dedicated electric BBQ facilities, toilets and undercover seating area. Open to all pilots, as well as the public, it is often an area families come to enjoy a picnic while watching the hang gliders and paragliders fly above them.

Beechmont is of the friendlier sites, in that it is suitable for novices to ridge soar safely with a clear view of the bottom landing area. It has three top landing areas (one dedicated to emergency landings only), and is often the site that pilots will have their first XC flight from. Taking Easterly wind directions, once high enough, you can head towards the west for tens and even hundreds of kilometers.

It is a popular site, and there are times when the sky is very busy, yet times when you may have the whole sky to yourself. Even though located on a public road, it is not as busy with spectators as the Tamborine Launch.

Beechmont weather station

Takeoff

Access to Launch

Beechmont Launch is easy to get to. There is a sealed road to the site from Canungra along Beechmont Rd, this is a public road. The launch area is adjacent to Rosin's Lookout. The site is open to club members and visiting pilots. It's a great prime spectator spot with friendly facilities, but please park in the designated areas.

Driving from Launch to Bombout

Drive down the hill on Beechmont Road towards Nerang (with your back to Launch area, turn right), until you get to the bottom of the hill. Turn right at the intersection on to the Nerang - Murwillumbah Rd. Turn right, on to Pocket Rd. Drive till you reach the Bombout area on the right. All together about 35-45 minutes to get down by car.

Pocket Road Zoomed In

Below is a close up map of Pocket Rd.

Walking Up

It is possible to walk up the mountain from the Bombout to the Launch area, but you have to cross private land, which is heavily frowned upon. This is not recommended, and is to be avoided. It is best not to attempt this walk up until you have been briefed by someone who has already done this. It is easy to get lost. Some of the route is marked by red ribbon. Will take anything between 45min and 1.5hrs. There is a GPS track of this route that can be downloaded from the Downloads page the CHGC website.

Walk up the far side (west side) of the spur until you encounter the track then follow it. There is one tricky spot halfway up where there is a sort of crossroads in a grassy area and the correct path is not apparent in the grass. The correct route is straight up, after 20 metres this track becomes visible again. At the crossroads the obvious track leading to the right is the wrong way. If you get lost backtrack, it is not worth trying to forge through lantana. Very muddy after rain. Note, you won't actually come out back at the Launch area, but on to the Beechmont Rd a few hundred metres away.

Landing

There is one main dedicated Bombout at Beechmont, but with additional acceptable landing areas adjacent to the Bombout. One being the "Pizza Paddock" (a triangular patch) and Prison Farm on the other side of the Southern ridge. There is a definite no landing area (marked in red below), please avoid this area at all times.

Pilots can also land at the bottom of the Southern ridge and walk up the mountain to Launch but not back down towards the Bombout (see Downloads page of this website to download the GPS track to walk up).

There are numerous landing areas at the top, including the "Top Landing" area directly behind launch (on the other side of the road), "the school" which is infact a paddock on the other side of the school community hall, the "new estate" area and Munsters which can be used in an emergency. All these areas are drawn and labelled in the Online Maps page of this website.

Main Bombout Aerial View

Main bombout straight out from launch dissected by a fence running east-west. Upslope landing from SE-NE. Note power lines to the north of the Bombout paddock.

Main Bombout (click image to enlarge)
Face Landing

Face landings intermediate and above. Restricted Pilots only under supervision of Instructor or Club Safety Officer, as serious injuries have occurred.

Flight

CTA: above 6500ft.

Hazards/Comments

  • If landing in the bombout paddock in the valley, be aware that there is an up-slope landing from SE-NE.
  • First-Aid kit in the main bombout in the valley. It is located under near the road, under the stile.
  • There is a sea breeze influence most afternoons in Spring and Summer. This can be great to soar but be aware that it can come roaring in.
  • In northerly winds, the windsock may indicate a more easterly airflow, as if coming up the face of launch. Check the wind station for a more accurate reading.
  • In southerly winds, potential for rotor on northern side of the southern ridge.
  • Be aware of valley wind effect in bombout when coming into land. Can be quite north or even NW.
  • Be aware of power line north of launch running down into the valley.
  • Be aware of power line to the north of the bombout paddock.
  • In southerly winds, be aware of your glide back to the bombout, if in the northern bowl. Perform little passes back towards launch to ascertain the strength of the wind, before venturing further towards the northern bowl.
  • There is commonly a wind gradient on landing, which can be severe in the last 50 feet.
  • If going XC from Beechmont, in moderate winds there is no safe landing until Hinchcliffe bombout,
  • The "Postage Stamp" located half way up from the valley, is an acceptable landing area for those who wish to walk back up. It is often overgrown and really only suitable for skilled intermediate and advanced pilots.
  • The Prison Farm land on the southern side of the spur is a more suitable landing area for those pilots wishing to land short and walk back up. However, do not land there with the intention of walking down to the bombout.
  • The Model Airfield is a suitable alternative landing area in southerly winds when pilots struggle low at the northern end of Beechmont ridge. Instead of trying to reach the official bombout, pilots can just fly easterly down the spur and land there.
  • Munsters is an emergency landing area on the top that can be used in southerly winds only. Dangerous in E and NE winds because of rotor from hills on the E and NE side. There is a fence at Munsters dividing the paddock in two (running E-W), and there's a power pole near the gate.
  • Face landings on Launch is for intermediate and experienced pilots only. Restricted Pilots can only face land under supervision of Instructor or Senior Safety Officer. It may be tempting, so as not to bombout, but serious injuries have occurred.
  • All face landings for all pilots are to be in the vicinity of the marker cone. No landing in the setup area.
Launching Area

If it is windy, pilots must launch from in front of the trees. There is to be no ground handling anywhere near the set up area. It must be done further down the slope or in front of the trees on windy days.

Face-landing

Face-landing is only permitted for Intermediate and Advanced HGFA rated pilots only. If you are new to Beechmont, seek advice first on face-landing as some pilots have had serious injuries attempting to do so.

A cone has been placed on Launch 25 metres from the road. This is the preferred zone for pilots wishing to face-land. Pilots must make a conscious effort to land in that area. That is below the trees bordering the launch and south of the windsock.

Any pilot that puts their wing on the road is putting themselves and the public at grave risk. If this occurs, then it must be reported to a SSO within 24 hours or you will have to pay a $50 fine. You may use the Report an Incident form on this website to contact a SSO. This also applies for Tandem pilots. The preferred landing area for tandems is in the vicinity of the cone.

Landings in the Setup Area.

There is to be no landings in the set up area. Pilots who do so are completely responsible for their actions and the committee will fully cooperate with any authority investigating pilots who break HGFA regulations. For those new to flying Beechmont, you need to be aware that even the smallest change in wind direction can make the world of difference to whether you can make any particular landing area.

Flying in Southerly Winds

Southerly winds on Beechmont are probably the worst in regards to getting to a landing area. Even though Beechmont is quite soarable when the wind is SSE, you won't get as high compared to wind of the same strength but coming from the E or NE. The reason for this is that when the wind comes from the SSE it runs along the ridge rather than up it, and there is nothing at the end of the ridge to turn the wind up the face.

When the wind comes from the NE, it gets pushed up the bowl to the right of launch and makes the hill much more soarable. Making the bomobout when the wind is from the NE is easiest done by soaring the bowl to the right of launch and then heading out to the B/O from the spur. But if the wind is from the south, the bowl is not going to produce any lift at all and if the wind is quite south, you may well be flying into rotor if heading out via the bowl.

If you are trying to make the B/O from launch in a Southerly wind, the best is to head directly out from launch. And if you are any lower than launch height, you probably won't make it. Remember that when you leave the ridge in a southerly, you'll be pushing a headwind all the way to the B/O. The land owners at the bottom of Beechmont don't want pilots landing short around their houses so make sure you leave ample height to get to the bombout. Don't wait till you are half the height of the hill to head out. For top landing in a South wind, be aware that if you are trying to fly to the school, it will be cross wind from launch, and if the wind is really south, then the school is almost headwind.;

You need a LOT more height to get to any top landing area in a southerly than in a NE when the landing areas are basically downwind. There are times when Munsters is almost impossible to get to in a Southerly even if you are 150m above launch. If you can't guarantee that you have enough height to easily make the approved top landing area, then you MUST go to the bombout.

Map information

map
Queensland - South Queensland - Canungra

Flying Fox

The site is only to be used by CHGC pilots or visiting pilots in the company of a CHGC member.

Flying Fox is regarded by many as the hidden gem of SE QLD flying sites. The site is nestled on the northern boundary of the Lamington National Park and has a reputation for "turning it on" for those lucky enough to be there on the right day. Spectacular "glass-off" flights, seabreeze convergences and great mid winter thermic flying when no other site is working.

Restrictions: Flying Fox is strictly open "by appointment" only (prior notification to the landowner is mandatory - please contact Phil Hystek or Brandon O'Donnell via the Contacts page)

The site is only to be used by CHGC pilots or visiting pilots in the company of a CHGC member as it is a very private and sensitive site

Takeoff

There are no toilet facilies at launch.

Landing

The only approved landing area is a SMALL field next to the octagonal house below launch. The field is small with obstacles on approach and no room for overshooting.

The landing field is not suitable for very low airtime pilots unless under direct supervision of a pilot experienced at FF.

The bombout is relatively close but given that there are no options for landing short, and the possibility of valley wind and sink, don't scratch too low in front of launch before heading out to the landing field.

DO NOT exit the landing field past the owners house or down the owners driveway. All pilots must walk down to the road via the gully to the south of the landing field.

Further to the north, landing options are "Scottsmans Bombout" (the field on the corner of Table Top road and Illinbah Road, The D paddock 500m further north on the east side of Illinbah road, and Gordo's landing.

Make sure you get a site briefing on all these landing options before you fly. They are also marked in the Online Maps page of this website.

There is excellent and easily accessible top landing area directly behind launch although it can be rough in a fresh NE wind.

Flight

Whilst it is not possible to fly directly over the back due to the huge expanse of the Lamington National Park, excellent flights have been done to the SE down the Numinbah Valley into N.S.W towards Mt Warning and to the SW down the western escarpment of the National Park (where phone coverage is non existent if you land out). Best to push forward to Gordo's and then cross into the Kerry to stay in an easy retrieve area. Be aware that Flying Fox can be quite rough in strong thermic conditions.

CTA: above 6500ft, steps to 10000ft behind launch.

Hazards/Comments

Flying Fox is flyable North through to East. The site is not safe for flying when there's any west in the prevailing wind. Check the top wind sock before choosing to fly. It may look up the face on launch but could be quite west in front.

Narrow flat launch area quickly dropping to steep slope. PG's: Don't set up too close to the steep slope. Due to the steep slope be especially prepared to stop glider from pitching forward when launching.

The Flying Fox valley can produce amazing flying conditions but also be some of the roughest air you've ever flown in. Choose your flying day wisely.

Flying Fox has two launches, North and East. The East is a very tight slot in the trees and should be used only by experienced pilots. Difficult to get a good feeling of the prevailing wind when on the East launch as it is very sheltered.

There is no First Aid kit at Flying Fox and no windsock in the bombout.

If flying late in the afternoon be aware for Katabatic changes. It is not uncommon for pilots to be caught out when landing due to the change in wind direction.

Mobile phones work on launch but not in the valley below launch. Make sure you have a working radio when flying at any of the club sites.

Map information

map
Queensland - South Queensland - Canungra

Hinchcliffe's (Hart's, Flattop)

The site is only to be used by CHGC pilots or visiting pilots in the company of a CHGC member.

Hinchcliffe's Launch is on the ridge running parallel to Beechmont further inland (west) from the coast. Known as Hinchies, it is often flown when the wind strength is too strong to fly from Beechmont. As it is a few Kms inland from the coast, it is a good site to go XC! Private road access is through a locked gate (conditions apply to obtain the key).

  1. If you plan to use Hinchies launch, please contact John prior to using it to ensure that you can get hold of the gate opener.
  2. The person who collects the gate opener from John's house IS RESPONSIBLE for putting the opener back. John has only one opener and it's his only access to the top of his property. He's happy to let us use it but he has to have it back at the end of the day. If he doesn't have it, or it's lost, then he has no access. If the opener is left in a different location, then this must only be done after direct consultation with John, not hearsay from another pilot.
  3. The person who takes the opener IS RESPONSIBLE for sending a text message to Kevin (the manager of Saddleback; the property the top of the hill behind launch). The text message need only read "Hi Kevin, …… from the Canungra Hang Gliding Club here. We will be using the road today"
  4. The daily use fee for Hinchies is $5 per pilot and the cash is to be left under in his meter box. PLEASE be honest with this and leave the money. Hinchies is a great asset to the club and it would be a absolute pity to loose it.

Landing

Hinchies bombout is open to spectators when it is on a public road, however the Launch area is only open to members. Access to the site is only possible by obtaining the electronic gate opener from John Hinchcliffe. Please car pool by leaving vehicles at the bottom of Toe Holt Road but be mindful of not blocking driveways or access easements. Before driving up beyond he locked gate, a text message must be sent to the landowner at the top of the mountain (Kevin) saying that you will be using the road.

When parking vehicles at the Hinchies Bombout, please park as far off the road as possible. Be careful when doing a U turn at the bombout as that part of the road is a crest and passing vehicles may not see you until it's too late.

The owner of the site (John Hinchcliffe) is hugely supportive of the CHGC but history of difficulties with neighbouring land owners makes this site very sensitive. Please bear this in mind when flying this site.

The only approved landing field for Hinchies is the V shaped paddock directly E of launch and bounded by the road and the V in the creek. There is absolutely no top landing, no face landing or landing anywhere in the valley other than the official bombout.

Flight

Hinchcliffe's is an excellent thermic site with great XC potential but it is not ridge soarable so it's less likely to be able to ridge soar and wait for a thermal to come through as is the case on Beechmont. Hinchies is flyable in winds E through S although the launch only faces E and flying there in a South wind will require launching in lee side rotor. The south face works best on winter afternoons when there is a S katabatic wind and can make for some beautiful sunset ridge soaring.

CTA: above 6500ft, steps to 8500ft behind launch.

Hazards/Comments

If you are flying Hinchies because it's blown out at Beechmont, be careful of rough air in the valley in front of launch, and possible strong sink if heading to the bombout. Don't drift low over the back chasing a climb as the Canungra Creek valley is incredibly rough in strong E wind. You need to be high enough to get on to Witheren and out into the Kerry Valley.

Be aware of power lines in the bombout that run both parallel and perpendicular to Launch (western and southern side of bombout area). The main valley power line runs directly through the middle of the landing field and it's quite common to not have enough height to get over the line if bombing out. Decide early whether you will make it easily over the line and if you have any doubts that you won't clear it by more than 50m altitude, then choose to land on the launch side. The air over the landing field can be rough if the wind is strong.

Map information

map
Queensland - South Queensland - Canungra

Mt. Tamborine

The site is only to be used by CHGC pilots or visiting pilots in the company of a CHGC member.

Tamborine Mountain Launch overlooks the beautiful Canungra Valley and is approximately 30km from the Gold Coast and 70km from Brisbane. With it's breath-taking views and scenery, it's clean mountain air and local art shops, quaint coffee shops and restaurants, and with it's country markets and friendly atmosphere, it is a popular site any weekend for pilots and spectators.

Mount Tamborine takes a general Westerly wind direction, and as such it is "on" quite often in the Winter. It is popular for high glide top to bottom sled runs early in the morning, it is good for boating around mid-day on buoyant days or for going on local cross country flights. Winter day thermals can be smooth and enjoyable and on electric blue-sky blue-thermal days, the view of the Gold Coast is simply breath-taking.

As the coast is to the east (with airspace ceiling that steps down rapidly in altitude), you have to punch headwind towards the west to do any distance. As such, the XC club record for Tamborine is relatively short compared to the Easterly sites.

Takeoff

Mount Tamborine Launch is open to club members and visiting pilots. It is a prime spectator spot on a main road, and is common for the Launch area to be full of tourists taking photos of the many colourful gliders.

Tambourine weather station

Toilets at launch site. Shops within 5 mins drive north.

Landing

There are two official bombouts. Our property on Wagon Wheel Road and the adjacent public land, and the Hugh Mahoney Reserve on the Mundoolin Connection Road. There is also land which can be utilised in an "emergency". It is the first open paddock at the edge of the trees along Wagon Wheel Road on the north side of the road (or the paddock adjacent to the second house on the right as you fly out from launch). Please see the Online Maps page for more detail. Landing outside these 3 areas is against CHGC policy.

When pre- or post- thermic, our main landing area is easily makeable by all paragliders and hang gliders. However this changes dramatically when thermals are present. Landing short at Tambo is a safety issue. Landing on the road is illegal and extremely risky and leaves ourselves open for litigation. Landing short at Tamborine is the result of not assessing the conditions correctly and it is considered extremely poor judgement to land short of the bombout after scratching low in front of launch or out on the left hand spur.

The CHGC enforces a Three Strike Rule that applies if landing in a No-Landing area. They are as follows.

1st Infringement- $50 fine.

You can avoid this fine by emailing your respective SSO within one week to explain your decisions that lead to this error. You can use the Report an Incident form on this website to do so.

2nd Infringement- $50 fine.

A mandatory one off payment.

3rd Infringement - Site Ban.

If within 6 months of the first infringement, then a 3 month ban from that site during which time the pilot should seek further training/advice from a SSO or instructor.

The top landing area is the TMSA sports complex on Long Rd, Tamborine Mountain. If at all possible we are to land on the undeveloped portion of the land up near the road. If you have to land in a playing field, use the square one. Stay away from the oval one. Especially the cricket pitch in the centre.

Aerial view of Bombout

Bomb out from the air (click image to enlarge)

Main Bombout (click image to enlarge)

Top Landing

  • Launch: Sealed road to the site along Main Western Rd Mt. Tamborine
  • Bombout: Main bombout can be accessed from Traveling down through Canungra then following Mundoolun rd and turning right into Wagonwheel Rd. Access via first vacant block of land on the left after Fenwick drive.

Flight

CTA: 7500ft

Hazards/Comments

The first thing you'll notice when standing on Tamborine Launch is the amount of trees between you and the landing area.

The thing with Tamborine is there is little room for error, and it catches new pilots out EVERYTIME. No matter how much the Safety Officer emphasises on the following points, there is always one person that doesn't take it in. Don't be one of those pilots. Please read the following carefully, so that you don't end up in the trees and risk injuring yourself.

There can be very strong thermic cycles at Mt. Tamborine. Essentially what that means is that when air is going up very fast at Tambo, air very close to it is going down very quickly. A pilot will see another pilot going up in the near distance and head out, only to suddenly find themselves in extreme sink with little hope of making either the distant pilot or the landing area! Combine an unpredictable strong sink cycle with strong head wind and it will almost guarantee you end up in the trees, so the number one rule with Mount Tamborine is:

If you are not going up, head out to the landing field.

Now in case you're one of those people that skip over red bold writing, here it is again:

If you are not going up, head out to the landing field.

  • If it is blowing from the north, it will almost certainly be rough air. Avoid flying in the northern bowl if it strong north otherwise you'll be flying in rotor.
  • If it blowing strong from the south, judge your glider very carefully, otherwise you will not make the bombout. There is nothing but trees in between.
  • Powered operations are prohibited at all CHGC launches.
  • No acrobatics within a cylinder of 150m radius around any CHGC launch.
  • First Aid box at the shelter in the main bombout.
  • Spring and Summer see strong thermals with the possibility of major sink cycles
  • A common situation is a westerly wind in the morning and a SE or NE sea breeze reaching Tamborine launch in the early afternoon. Once you are about to launch a Hangglider it is hard to see the wind streamers behind you and it is worthwhile to be assisted by a sensible person who can watch behind you for the onset of tailwind.
  • Be aware of the wind strength and the distance to the bombout areas.
  • Beware the level and degree of the sink cycles.
  • Launch slope is shallower than ideal and is troubled by turbulence from the shelf in front of the launch and from the trees on the sides of the launch.
  • Face landing for Advanced pilots only when there are no public or Hangliders on launch.
  • Refrain from setting up landing approach low over houses near main bombout.
  • The trees on the north side cause turbulence and wind shadow in a northerly wind.
  • Beware of 7500ft height limit. (CTA)
  • Because of the distance from the launch to the main landing site on Wagonwheel Rd all paraglider pilots need to fly in such a manner that a safe landing in the designated landing area is the primary flight plan if they are not gaining height. i.e. if the pilot is not gaining height, they need to be flying towards the landing area, not go scratching low hoping to find lift.

This site is rated Intermediate for Paragliders, restricted pilots are to fly only if under supervision of an Instructor or Club Safety Officer.

Restricted pilots must be aware of the privileges and limitations for their rating, paying particular attention to clause (g) when flying Mt Tamborine.

Map information

map

Queensland - South Queensland - Sunshine Coast - 6 sites

Map of Sunshine Coast sites
Name Location Type Conditions Rating Height
Alexandra Headland NE Intermediate. Advanced ground handling skills are required for launch. 8m / 26ft
Mt. Widgee SE HG Adv, PG5 2,035ft, 620m
North End Sunshine Beach S-SSE All levels 33m / 108ft
Point Cartwright S-SE All levels 22m / 72ft
Rainbow Beach - Carlo Sand Blow 180km N of Brisbane. Coastal NNE-ESE PG2 / HG Supervised 90m / 295ft
Teewah Beach 15km N of Noosa. E All Levels. Intermediate skills required for launch. Experienced pilots required on launch to assist with take offs. 30m / 98ft
Queensland - South Queensland - Sunshine Coast

Alexandra Headland

Over the last few years the club has developed a protocol for safe and responsible flight at this site.

The management of this site relies upon a close and co-operative partnership between the Sunshine Coast Airport Control Tower and every pilot that flies this site.

Queensland - South Queensland - Sunshine Coast

Mt. Widgee

A large inland mountain launch. Heavily treed with limited landing areas.

This site is administered and managed by the Sunshine Coast Sports Aviators club.

Your first flights here must be under supervision of a SCSA club member to learn site protocols, hazards, prohibited landing areas and other land access restrictions.

Queensland - South Queensland - Sunshine Coast

North End Sunshine Beach

This is a relatively small site, and as such there is only room for a small number of pilots flying at any one time. Please discuss the take off options and flying conditions with a Club Safety Officer before flying.
Restrictions:

Most days allow for good flying and crossing over onto the main soaring ridge, If you are soaring the main ridge please follow all the usual rules for flying at Sunrise. these rules can be found here. Note that flight within the restricted zone (see below) is only permitted if 100ft vertical separation from all properties is maintained.

As usual, all other protocols and regulations as per the HGFA apply.

Queensland - South Queensland - Sunshine Coast

Point Cartwright

Point Cartwright is one of the most common flown South East facing sites for paragliding and hang gliding flight on the Sunshine Coast.
Restrictions:

Over the last number years the club has developed a protocol for safe and responsible flight at this site.

The management of this site relies upon a close and co-operative partnership between the Sunshine Coast Airport Control Tower, CASA and every pilot that flies this site.

Point Cartwright is situated within the controlled airspace of Sunshine Coast airport, although flying hang gliders and paragliders within controlled airspace is usually not allowed at all our club has been extremely lucky to have had CASA approve an exemption for us to fly within the controlled airspace of Sunshine Coast Airport but with a number of conditions see full exemption HERE

The following rules are critical to the ongoing operation of this site, and are mandatory for all pilots:
  • Before the commencement of any Hang gliding or Paragliding operations a duty officer will be nominated.
  • The Duty Officer will have the responsibility to call the Sunshine Coast Tower and gain clearance for operations.
  • The Duty Officer will have the responsibility to control operations on site.
  • The Duty Officer will have the responsibility to call the Sunshine Coast Tower and notify them when operation have completed.
  • If the Duty Officer has to leave site then a new Duty Officer will be nominated and will call the sunshine Coast Tower to notify them of the change of Duty Officer
  • The Duty Officer will report any incident/accident to the Australian Transport Safety Bureau, CASA and the HGFA.
  • Care must be taken when launching and landing to stay clear of general public

As usual, all other protocols and regulations as per the HGFA apply.

Queensland - South Queensland - Sunshine Coast

Rainbow Beach - Carlo Sand Blow

Beautiful coastal soaring along nearly 10km of 100m high sand dune.

Takeoff

Anywhere from the sand blow.

Landing

Easy top landing for PG and HG or land on the beach. Do not land between the swimming flags if present. At high tide, you might struggle to get a car past the rocks to the right of the access ramp. If you bomb out far S of launch you can try to hitch a ride with a 4WDer.
Queensland - South Queensland - Sunshine Coast

Teewah Beach

Restrictions:

Teewah Beach is located within the Cooloola Great Sandy National Park. National Parks generally consider HG and PG as unsuitable activity for a National Park but the Sunshine Coast Hang Gliding Club has been extremely lucky to be granted a permit for its members to be allowed to fly with agreed conditions. Below is a summary of the new condition but please read the full exemption available HERE.

  1. Pilots must be members of the SCSA club
  2. A Duty Pilot must be nominated prior to any flying. The duty pilot shall establish the procedures for that day (radio frequency, variation to regular flight plans or landing patterns ect.)
  3. Prior to any pilot commencing flight operations, the pilot shall have the responsibility to ensure:
    1. He/she has permission from the Sunshine Coast Sports Aviators to operate from this site, and
    2. He/she is aware who the Duty Pilot is for that day, and
    3. What UHF Radio Frequency has been nominated for operations on that day, and
    4. That their radio is in good working order and set to the nominated frequency, and
    5. That he/she has sought advice from the Duty pilot as to the adopted procedures for the day
  4. Landing of Hang Gliders or Paragliders on the beach, must only be on the soft sand, above the high water mark and within 1000 meters North or South of the launch area only if:
    • to do so would not endanger a person on the ground; and
    • would not cause conflict with a vehicle on the beach or other ground traffic thoroughfares; and
    • satisfied that operations maybe carried out safely, having regard to the recommended procedures set out in the Sunshine Coast Sports Aviators "Flying Sites Guide".
  5. As usual, all other protocols and regulations as per the HGFA apply.