Team Patrick Sieber – The first adventure: The drive to Hondarribia

Hi there,
here goes our first blog entry.. 😉
The first adventure: The drive to Hondarribia
On Wednesday (20.06.’18) it was finally time – our trip to the starting point of the X-Pyr 2018 in Hondarribia could begin. But already on the way of our 1.600km drive we were confronted with lots of adventures… #vwt4
The Bus
In the last couple of weeks, our VW T4 gave us cause for concern every now and then – the air conditioning made really loud, disconcerting noises. During the trip from Innsbruck to Hondarribia, the issue worsened by every kilometer driven, so we decided at 1 a.m. to spend the night somewhere in rural France. Fully rested, we solved the problem pragmatically by pulling the AC’s fuse and we could finally keep on moving
The Pyrenees
Unfortunately, we had to take the first kilometers of the Pyrenees through a thick layer of fog. As the visibility improved, the wild, untouched landscape of the mountains opened up in front of us and we drove directly to the Pic d’Orhi to take a look at the second turnpoint and do a first, small hike&fly. On the way there we were greeted by the first vultures, who already knew how to make use of the strong thermals. Of course, by seeing the vultures, Patrick could hardly wait to finally get into the air as well So we were very happy when we arrived at the parking of the Pic d’Orhi around 1 p.m. and took of in the direction of the summit immediately.
The first flight
The ascent to the summit of the Pic d’Orhi took only about an hour and was easy to do thanks to the GR10 long-distance hiking trail. Next to us, Jesse Williams was already circling with the vultures, but his support team told us they had not climbed to the summit because of the strong north wind. Nevertheless, we wanted to get our own impressions of the terrain and continued our way up. Of course, the three Americans had been right – the wind was strong and at times extremely gusty, so we were glad about the hiking trail on the south side of the mountain. At the top, the wind continued to increase and Patrick decided to wait and get ready on the south side. In a quiet phase, he started towards turnpoint 1 and flew about 15 kilometers in only 15 minutes against the actual X-Pyr route through the clouds. After a few circles with two vultures, he was able to land next to a nice French mountain bar and we met for a last landing beer before the final trip to the Atlantic.
Arrival in Hondarribia
Finally, after a good 18 hours drive we reached Hondarribia on Thursday evening and checked in at the campsite. We are curious what will happen in the next few days and keep you updated

All the best!
Mit freundlichen Grüßen
Patrick Sieber

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