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Home to one of the best flight parks in the country, Georgia is a great place for hang gliding. Use this complete guide to find all the best spots in the state.
No matter if you’re a complete novice or an experienced hang gliding veteran, Georgia is one of the best states in the entire country. It has good weather, great locations, and a variety of landscapes to view from the skies. But Georgia is a big state and you don’t want to go to the wrong spot and be 6 hours from where you really want to be. So what are the best locations go hang gliding in Georgia?
The best hang gliding companies and places in Georgia are:
- Lookout Mountain Flight Park
- Amphibian Air
- Pigeon Mountain
- Bell Mountain Park & Historical Site
- Glassy Mountain
For an exciting new adventure to experience in Georgia, you should think about hang gliding. There are plenty of great places in the state that offer amazing views and an adrenaline rush like no other. In this blog post, we'll discuss some of the best spots around Georgia for you to learn how to hang glide and then take to the skies yourself. So strap in and get ready for the ride of your life!
One of the staples of FlightNotch is our extensive lists of where you can go hang gliding in the United States. We are putting together articles just like this one for every state in the country. For each of these posts, we research the location and speak with pilots who fly there so that we can come up with a list of what are truly the best spots to go hang gliding.
Can You Hang Glide in Georgia?
I know, I know. You're here to learn about the best places in Georgia to go hang gliding. We'll get there shortly, I promise. But first, we need to look at whether or not Georgia is worth traveling to for this sport in the first place. While there are quite a few things that go into one place being better than another, you mainly need three things: places to glide, good views, and decent weather.
So can you go hang gliding in Georgia?
The short answer is: yes! Georgia is actually a great place for beginners to learn about hang gliding with one of the best flight parks in the country. There are companies that will teach you how to hang glide, take you up in the air with a professional instructor, and give you an incredible experience. If you already know how to glide yourself, then you're in luck too because Georgia has plenty of great locations to take off from.
In addition to all of the great locations around the state that offer great views, most places also have relatively calm weather conditions. Plus, since Georgia is in the southeastern United States, you'll find that the average temperatures for many months during the year are perfect for spending a day out gliding. You won't lose out on half the year (or more!) due to cold and snowy weather conditions down here.
Where Can You Hang Glide in Georgia?
So now that we know Georgia is a great place to go hang gliding, let's take a look at some of the specific locations around the state where you can do it. Let’s begin by looking at any highly-rated companies and organizations for hang gliding in Georgia. And then we'll dive into where you can take your own glider and launch into the skies. Let's get to it.
Lookout Mountain Flight Park
Anyone who's considering going hang gliding in Georgia needs to check out Lookout Mountain Flight Park. It's consistently rated as one of the best places to learn about hang gliding in the entire country and is in Rising Fawn in the northern area of the state (near the Tennessee border). They have top-of-the-line equipment, highly experienced instructors, and they take you up on tandem flights so you can experience the thrill of gliding through the air while being securely attached to an instructor.
Lookout Mountain offers various training packages depending on if you're experienced, brand new, want to learn how to foot launch, want to participate in aerotowing, and more. The packages range from $150 up to $1,899 depending on what you're looking for. With nearly ten different options to choose from, there really is something for everyone at Lookout Mountain when it comes to learning how to start hang gliding.
Not only is Lookout Mountain Flight Park one of the best places to learn about hang gliding, but it's also a great location for experienced gliders. The main launch site here faces northwest and has a concrete radial launch ramp to make taking off in your hang glider as easy as possible. Once you take off, you'll have more than 20 miles of breathtaking mountain views as you soar above Lookout Valley below.
To fly solo you must have a current H2 rating or higher from the United States Hang Gliding and Paragliding Association (USHPA). But don't worry if you aren't ready to fly solo, Lookout Mountain specializes in tandem flights as well. For an introductory tandem flight up to 1,500 feet, it'll set you back $249. If you're a bit more experienced and want to go up to 3,000 feet high, expect to pay about $325.
When you get done gliding for the day, you'll have all sorts of fun options and other things to choose from to stay busy and have even more fun. There are lots of great restaurants, hiking trails, and other outdoor activities in the area to keep you busy. So if you want an amazing hang gliding experience in Georgia, Lookout Mountain Flight Park should be at the very top of your list.
For a unique experience unlike any other that you'll find in Georgia, you should consider checking out Amphibian Air. Located on the eastern coast of the state near the Savannah/Tybee Island area, this company offers guided flights on an amphibious motor-powered hang glider. You read that right, this experience puts you on a hang glider that's motor-powered and can also go in the water.
Unlike regular hang gliding, these types of gliders are powered by a small engine and can stay in the air for long periods of time. This means you don't have to worry about staying up in the air, you can just sit back and relax while your pilot does all the work. And when it's time to land, they simply glide down onto a nearby body of water (the ocean in this case) where they then taxi right up to the shore.
While you're flying, as long as conditions permit, the pilot will even let you take the controls so you can experience what it's like to fly one of these unique gliders. This is one of the best ways to foray into the world of hang gliding since you'll be able to feel what it's like to soar through the skies and control the glider without actually having to worry about keeping it in the air and maintaining altitude while you fly.
Anyone that’s looking for a one-of-a-kind hang gliding experience in Georgia, consider going on an amphibious motor-powered hang glider with Amphibian Air. Prices start at $299 ($285 if using cash) for a 90-minute flight. For $350, you can also partake in a Sport Pilot Proficiency Check that can go towards you obtaining your Sport Pilot License.
Lastly, due to its location near Savannah, Tybee, and Hilton Head, there are plenty of other great activities and attractions nearby that you can enjoy after your flight. This includes going to the beach, touring a plantation, visiting a state park, or checking out one of the many great restaurants in the area.
Alright, now that we've talked about two of the best companies (well one company and one flight park, but you get my point) in Georgia for gliding, let's move on to the launch sites where you can actually take your own glider to and take off from. I'll always recommend that you start with Lookout Mountain and go from there, but I don't want you to think that it's your only option!
First up on the list of Georgian launch sites is Pigeon Mountain. This mountain’s located in the northwest part of the state near Chattanooga, Tennessee. Pigeon Mountain offers arguably the best views in Georgia for hang gliding as it's located right smack dab in the middle of a valley. When you're soaring through the air, you'll have views of the Tennessee River below and the surrounding mountains and valleys.
Pigeon Mountain is a great place to fly any time of year, but I would recommend avoiding it during the winter months since that's when the weather can be most unpredictable. Spring and fall are usually pretty good, but summer is definitely the best time to fly here since the weather is usually pretty stable.
If you get done gliding for the day, you'll have a lot of other nearby activities and things that you can do to have fun. There are several hiking trails in the area as well as a few caves that you can explore. You can also drive over to Chattanooga and check out all the great things that the city has to offer. For a great place to fly with some great views, Pigeon Mountain should definitely be near the top of your list.
Bell Mountain Park & Historical Site
Next up is Bell Mountain Park & Historical Site. This launch site is in the northeast part of Georgia near the city of Clayton. Bell Mountain offers some great views of the surrounding area, including the Blue Ridge Mountains off in the distance. There's something breathtaking about launching from one of these mountains on your hang glider and then seeing other mountains and hills in the distance as far as your eyes can see.
Like most places in Georgia, Bell Mountain is a great place to fly almost any time of year because of the warm weather seen in much of the South. While you can likely find days to fly even in the heart of winter, there will still be the occasional cold front that comes through and could make conditions less than ideal. So if you want to fly here, spring and fall are probably your best bet (as summer can get downright hot and humid!).
When you're not flying, there are fun activities to do in the area. If you want to stay on the mountain, there are several hiking trails that you can explore. You can also drive into Clayton and check out the many shops and restaurants that the city has to offer.
Next up on the list is the area around Menlo. Located in the northwest corner of Georgia, Menlo is a great place to fly for those that want some amazing views. The area around Menlo is pretty rural, so you'll have views of farmland and forests as far as your eyes can see. And if there’s good weather, you might even see into Tennessee or Alabama!
The weather in Menlo is usually pretty good for flying any time of year, but I would recommend avoiding it during the winter months. That's when the weather can be most unpredictable and you might run into a cold front or two. Summer of course has good weather but it can get a bit too hot for some people. That said, spring and fall are definitely the best times to fly here since the temperatures are usually pretty moderate.
When it comes to things to do outside of flying, Menlo is a pretty small town so there's not a lot going on. However, there are some hiking trails in the area as well as a few lakes that you can swim in. You can also drive into one of the nearby cities like Chattanooga or Dalton and check out all the great things that they have to offer.
Rounding out the list is Glassy Mountain. This launch site is located in the southwest corner of Georgia near the city of Rome. Glassy Mountain offers some great views of the surrounding area, including Lookout Mountain off in the distance. When you take off from here and venture up into the air, you should see for miles in every direction.
The weather throughout the year is nearly perfect for taking to the skies, with temperatures usually going only into the mid-80s during the spring and fall months. The summer months get a bit warmer like the rest of the state with typical highs venturing up into the 90s. Winter can be a little chilly from time to time with the occasional snowfall, but as long as there's no wind blowing, you should be fine.
There are also more things to do in the area, including fishing, camping, hiking, and more. For anyone who’s looking for a great place to go hang gliding near Rome, Georgia, Glassy Mountain is the place for you.
That’s going to finish off our list of the best places to go hang gliding in Georgia. All of these locations offer great views, perfect weather, and other activities to do nearby. So whether you're a seasoned pro or just getting started, be sure to check out one of these great spots the next time you're looking for a place to take flight. Thanks for reading!