Parahawking Tandem Experience

 

ANNOUNCEMENT!

NOW TAKING BOOKINGS FOR PARAHAWKING IN SPAIN

Where:
Algodonales, Spain
When:
October to May
Available to:
Anyone (Age and weight restrictions may apply)
Price:
€200

Parahawking is paragliding and interacting with a trained bird of prey in it's own natural environment. By combining paragliding with the ancient art of falconry, we have successfully trained Vultures to fly with us and guide us through the sky as we fly. It was developed and pioneered in 2001 by award winning bird trainer Scott Mason as an enrichment exercise for non releasable rehabilitated raptors and to find new ways to promote global vulture conservation issues. 

IN THE AIR
We fly with American Black Vultures and Harris Hawks. They will lead us to the best thermals, soar with us as we gain height then come and land on YOUR hand to take a food reward many times during the flight. We can take amazing pictures and movie of the flight from our on-board cameras for you to take away. A totally unique and unforgettable experience.

ON THE GROUND
On landing, our highly trained staff will educate you on Vulture Conservation and how flying with us has directly helped to save vultures from extinction. If Paragliding was on your bucket list then Parahawking will fulfil all your dreams, a truly unique once in a life time experience not to be missed.

Parahawking has been featured on the BBC, Nat Geo, Discovery Channel, ABC News and well as many other international networks. 

READ THE TRIP ADVISOR REVIEWS

PLEASE NOTE: We can only do a limited number of Parahawking Experiences per day. Due to it's increasing popularity, they tend to get booked up pretty quickly. Please try not to leave your booking until the last minute, you may not get a spot. Book in advance to secure a place.

Optional Extras:

BIRD OF PREY EXPERIENCE: Add the Bird of Prey Experience, Book our Parahawking VIP Day Package.

Watch the amazing video.

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Watch another amazing video

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Booking Form

Please use the form below to make a booking, if you experience problems with the booking form, please send an email to - info@parahawking.com

Please read the Frequently Asked Questions to your right

PLEASE NOTE: We are no longer operating in Nepal. We are now only operating in Spain
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Frequently Asked Questions

What exactly is Parahawking?
Parahawking is paragliding with a trained bird of prey. It was pioneered in Pokhara, Nepal by renowned bird trainer and paraglider, Scott Mason. Now basd in Algodonales, southern Spain, birds of prey such as American Black Vultures are trained as part of an award winning enrichment program, to fly with paragliders and, by using their incredible ability to conserve energy, can guide the paragliders to the best thermals. They will then land on the passengers gloved hand for an inflight reward. Parahawking is a perfect mix of adventure, eco-tourism and conservation. A Parahawking Tandem Experience is more than just a paragliding flight with a trained bird, it's an education into vultures and the problems they face in the wild. Proceeds from Parahawking tandem flights go directly towards vulture conservation projects.

How does it work?
Birds of prey have a natural instinct to conserve energy wherever and whenever possible. During a flight, a bird will burn more energy than it would if it was just sitting in a tree, this means it has to eat to replace the used energy. Sometimes birds will travel long distances to find food. To conserve energy whilst flying, birds of prey use thermals. Thermals are rising currents of warm air that are created by the sun heating the ground. Birds can gain height and travel long distances without flapping their wings by using thermals. Paragliders also use thermals when they are flying and will often use wild birds to guide them to where the thermals are. Our trained birds are no different, they will find the thermals in order to stay aloft and conserve energy whilst flying. We as paragliders harness their ability to conserve energy by following them as we fly.

Our birds need to be rewarded for guiding us into the thermals. During the flight the passenger will place small morsels of meat onto his gloved hand, the birds will come and gently land on the hand to take the food, and then gracefully fly away to find the next thermal. A perfect symbiotic relationship.

Is there a weight and age limit?
All Paraglider wings have an upper and lower weight range, when the upper weight range is exceeded, it can make the glider difficult to fly in some situatons and conditions. Parahawking tandem flights are different from regular tandem flights, our weight limit for passengers is 100 kg/220 lb. The only other requirement is that you are able to run a few steps for the take off and landing. You do not have to be a qualified pilot, you will be a passenger attached to a qualified tandem pilot. We reserve the right to refuse to fly any passenger that does not meet our requirements.

When can I do it?
The Parahawking season runs from October to May.

Where can I do it?
You can do Parahawking in Algodonales, Spain only.

How does it help Vulture Conservation?
Vultures are in serious decline, in the last 15 years the numbers have dropped by a staggering 99.9% in some parts of Asia whilst vultures in Europe and African are experiencing similar declines. This catastrophic decline is due to a veterinary drug called Diclofenac. This anti inflammatory drug is routinely administered to sick and dying livestock including cows and buffalo and has proven to be very effective in reducing pain and suffering. However, when the animal dies with Diclofenac still in it's system, the vultures that feed from the animal carcass will ingest remnants of the drug which is poisonous to them and kills them within 24 hours.

Vultures are important in our society, they play a vital role in our ecosystem by cleaning up all of the dead animals that would otherwise be left to rot. Millions of tonnes of animal carcasses are disposed of each year across Asia, which if not cleaned up, would pose a real risk to human health. Asia's vultures are declining faster than the Dodo and could be extinct in the next 5-10 years, unfortunately not enough people know about the problem. Vultures are considered to be quite unsavory creatures because of this, these prehistoric looking birds are difficult to empathize with. We want to change that!

Parahawking provides a unique opportunity to see vultures in a different light, to understand about the importance of them in our society and to learn about their behavior in the wild. Parahawking is our mission to raise more public awareness to the plight of Asia's vultures and in doing so halt the decline and prevent their extinction.

We support vital Vulture conservation projects, proceeds from every Parahawking flight go to Vulture conservations projects.

How is this different from normal paragliding?
Ask yourself, when was the last time you marveled at the image of a bird of prey in flight? You probably had your feet firmly on the ground whilst gazing up at the bird in the sky. Parahawking gives you the unique opportunity to interact with these birds and see the world through their eyes while you share the sky with them. Paragliding is an exciting adventure activity on own but this takes Paragliding to a whole different dimension.

How do I book?
Book your Parahawking activity directly with us via this website to gaurantee the best chance of a spot.

How much does it cost?
A Parahawking Tandem Experience costs: €200

How long does the flight last?
Parahawking flights are not based on time in the air but the overall experience of sharing the sky with a trained bird of prey. The weather can determine the length of the flight as can many other factors, especially when working with birds. We make no guarantees about flight times however we always try our best to stay in the air for around 20 to 30 minutes.

Can I take a Parahawking course?
We do not currently offer Parahawking courses. If you're not already a pilot and you want to learn to paraglide then there is no better place to learn to fly than here in Algodonales. Fly Spain - http://www.flyspain.com - offer beginner courses. If you want to learn more about the birds then you can take a Bird of Prey Experience with us. You can do a 2-3 hour session. See the Bird of Prey Experiences tab for more details and prices.

What birds do you use?
We use a variety of Vultures and hawks for Parahawking.

Where do the birds come from?
All of our birds are bred in captivity. Parahawking is an award winning project, it was voted Best Enrichment Behaviour by the International Association of Avian Trainers and Educators (IAATE) in 2011.

Is it dangerous?
Paragliding and Parahawking is an adventure activity but it is not dangerous. We use only the best pilots for Parahawking. All of our pilots are internationally licensed and insured. 

What do I need to bring?
All you need to bring are a pair of training shoes or boots and a sweatshirt or jacket depending on the time of year. 

Can I take a camera?
Yes, you can bring your own camera or we can take inflight pictures and movie from our onboard cameras, at a small additional cost. 

Do you provide accommodation?
Yes, we have partnered with our neighbours at the beautful Olive Alchemy Lifestyle Retreat.

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