There are some adventures that, although they do not turn out as expected, need to be told… And that was the story of the Day at Lajas.
It turns out that at sunrise the Kamikaze pilots Edgardo Rivera and Luis Ruiz met for a morning flight in the Lajas Valley. (David Garber would arrive a little later). Edgardo and Luis were both taking off at Trikes and they both went off without major problems. The Valley mist was in full swing, so Edgardo was finally taking the flight he had always dreamed of. He was finally in the air at the appropriate time to enjoy the view of the Mist in Lajas Valley. His Joy, sadly will not last for so long…
After some 30 minutes enjoying the Mist, we decided to go flying towards the PR2 of Guanica, specifically to the sunflower area. For that we need to cross the Valley for some 8 miles of pure open agricultural fields. Halfway through, things began to take another turn … Edgardo was taking a “Live” Video for Facebook, and suddenly lost his phone. It fell to the ground from its 250 feet height at that time. The phone fell face up and continued recording 😲!!!
After 45 minutes, Edgardo’s Trike, and the one with a super safe Rotax 447 2-piston engine, began to lose power. Edgardo decided to go to the most open and beautiful terrain below us. It was full of hay itself, and he proceeded to land. The detail is that Edgardo did not think about landing near a path so that his rescue would be more comfortable, and there he was … in the middle of nowhere a lot of Hail and with a fairly heavy Trike to carry on 😎.
Luis Ruiz has in his helmet a properly communication system in which he can make and receive phone calls while flying. But obviously those were unsuccessful, Edgardo had previously lost his phone… Then, Luis evaluated the alternatives for landing and the grass was too high to be able for him to take off from the place in case he landed. Edgardo indicated with his gestures that everything was fine.
Luis decided to return to Lajas to begin the rescue, and on the way back he met with David Garber in flight. They both returned and flew over the ground, but Edgardo had already moved from there looking for alternatives to getaway.
There was no other way, Luis and David returned to Lajas and put away his equipment to begin the rescue. In the meantime, Edgardo communicated from another phone and sent a location pin.
On the way to the rescue, the GPS address Luis and his Trailer down an unpaved road. Once they entered there they discovered that the road had no exit 😑. There was a better route and the GPS had thrown us the other way … This made Luis juggle to be able to turn the Trailer again and get back on track. And the worst thing was that the road was very bad and Luis had to accelerate the F250 fully to avoid staying with the Trailer in place. This seriously hurt the Trailer and its supports. In the Trailer current condition, it wouldn’t get back to Aguada unless some tensor were tied to keep the structure 😑 …
Finally, we arrived at the La Plata Farm, Inc. where Edgardo had come to request help, there he was assisted by Papo García and Heriberto Vélez. To get there, Edgardo had to jump several gates, and run (really hard) from some Bulls and Cows that he found on the road and incidentally jump over a river (which he did not see avoiding the bulls).
Heriberto accompanied us and was opening the gates in the area. As David said, “ohh man, we are in the middle of nowhere“. For some time it looks like a Open Safari in Africa, a surreal view of Puerto Rico.
Finally upon arrival, David and Edgardo pulled the Trike to one side of the taxi. Apparently the carburetor pan had been emptied and thus had lost strength. Once it was full, the Trike ran as if it had never failed. If Edgardo had landed somewhere with better take-off conditions, it was likely that he would have been able to fly back to the Lajas runway …
When leaving there, we had to reinforce the Trailer with tension chords both in width and length, and Luis was able to take it smoothly back to Aguada. The repairs are already being coordinated. Edgardo and David had a slight attempt to retrieve the phone. But nothing to see and they are tired from previous adventure. Edgardo had to find a new one, on the way to his town of Aguas Buenas.
As you can see, aviation is something wonderful, full of adventures, but from time to time, things do not go the way we want. The sport of Paramotor is the safest of sport aviation. Since the flight speed is not exaggerated and allows you to land without major problem if things do not go well with the flight. Hope you like this adventure!.
As always, Blessings to all who travel this path with us 🙏!!!!.