26
Aug

Lindbergh's Legacy

by Alan Rider

“I lose all connection with the past. I live only in the moment in this strange, unmortal space, crowded with beauty, pierced with danger.”

That’s how Charles Lindbergh described his first airplane ride in 1922, just five short years before he made the famous New York-Paris transatlantic crossing that would earn him an enduring place in U.S. history.

Obviously Lucky Lindy experienced something on that first flight—“the freedom of the sky” he called it—that would change the course of his life forever.  Now you can get a firsthand feel for the joy of flight he was describing just down the coast from where the famous aviator died on the Hawaiian island of Maui 34 years ago today.

Hang Gliding Maui offers 30-minute “instructional” powered hang glider flights over the island’s lush eastern coast from the tiny asphalt airstrip they call Hana Airport.  Being a sucker for anything that flies, I went up with owner and chief pilot Armin Engert a couple years ago and can tell you that his propeller-driven two-seat trike suspended from a large triangular hang glider wing delivers a truly extraordinary experience—a full-on sensory overload really—that I’m quite certain Lindbergh would have loved.  To see what I mean, check out the photo gallery here.

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