May 12, 2010
By Alton K. Marsh
You haven’t heard of the Empty Quarter, and that’s why paraglider pilot and freelance author and photographer George Steinmetz traveled there.
The Empty Quarter is one of the most remote deserts on Earth and includes portions of Oman, Yemen, Saudi Arabia, and the United Arab Emirates. It has been crossed only a handful of times, according to the photographer’s website.
“The Empty Quarter is larger than France without a single permanent point of water or human habitation,” New Jersey-based Steinmetz writes on his website. “It’s both the world’s largest sand sea and one of the hottest places on earth.”
The result of several trips by the National Geographic and Geo contributor is a coffee table book of photographs taken by him from a 30-mph paraglider. The aircraft consists of the paraglider wing, a back-pack mounted motor, and a single-seat harness that ties the three pieces together. It packs into three bags weighing less than 72 lbs and fits into standard baggage for most commercial aircraft, Steinmetz explains in his website. See Steinmetz’s website for more photos and a video on how the book was photographed.
Photos used by permission of George Steinmetz Photography.
AOPA Pilot Senior Editor Alton Marsh has been a pilot since 1970 and has an airline transport pilot certificate and instrument and multiengine flight instructor certificates, aerobatic training, and a commercial seaplane certificate.
As the cold weather chills AOPA’s Headquarters in Frederick, many of us are inside generating new resources for flying clubs.
In my house, every Friday night is “Movie Night.” While the movies are rarely educational (I don’t think I learned anything from the Lego Movie), we look forward to the weekly opportunity to spend time together. Why not use the same concept for your Flying Club (with the addition of education, of course)?
AOPA Flying Club Manager Kelby Ferwerda posted the following on the AOPA Flying Club Facebook Page: “Recently I’ve talked with quite a few Flying Clubs about maintaining social activity through the cold winter months. Some clubs host Holliday Parties, others have Potluck Movie Nights. What does your club do to keep members involved during the chilly months?”
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