Some of our Adventure Staff at The Little Nell and our sister property, The Limelight Lodge, were able to take a flight with Aspen Paragliding off Aspen Mountain this morning. What an amazing experience!
The day started by meeting at Aspen Paragliding in downtown Aspen (just across from The Little Nell, above the Butcher’s Block) at 8:15 a.m. We signed a few waivers and hopped in the truck for a comfortable but winding ride up Aspen Mountain. The group then hopped out of the truck, paragliders neatly packed into backpacks and satchels. A short walk out to Walsh’s, and we were ready to prepare for flight.
Our “pilots” carefully spread out the paragliders and outfitted our group with helmets and harnesses. A quick lesson in take-off, and we were just about ready to go.
Before we knew it, we were flying. There is no jumping or falling off a cliff in paragliding. Just a few running steps, and we were soaring. Higher and higher. The thing about paragliding, compared to skydiving, is that you actually climb higher after take-off, and the experience is much longer than any skydiving jump. Our ride was about 20 minutes in the air as our pilots “caught the thermals” and led us over the Rocky Mountains with Aspen below our feet.
Before landing, the pilots asked us if we “liked roller coasters.” Being adventurous folks, we of course said yes. Our instructors then let us experience some G-force as we spun and swayed through the air. Northstar Nature Preserve was our designated landing spot, and our pilots guided us to the ground.
Interesting in soaring above town? Aspen Paragliding offers flights in both winter and summer for those age 5 and up. Tandem flights cost $225 and typically occur in the mornings, although afternoon flights can be scheduled as well.
The activity is entirely weather and wind dependent, so be sure to book your flight at the beginning of your trip. We’ve heard stories of guests saving paragliding for their final day in Aspen, only to have their flights cancelled due to wind/weather issues. So book early in your trip so you can reschedule if you need to.
You can also book your paragliding trip through The Little Nell or Limelight Lodge’s Adventure Concierge, or simply stop by and chat with one of us about the experience. We’d be happy to share our story.