Video: Flying with Hang Gliding Hawaii


Back in May, I wrote about how Eric Nakamoto put everything on the line to learn to fly, buy a state-of-the-art ultralight powered trike, and bring it back to Hawaii to start Hang Gliding Hawaii. Even though he sought me out as part of a blogger outreach campaign, offering flights for write-ups, I was more than happy to tell his story, no take-offs or landings required.

I invited him to come out to the Hawaii Geek Meet, since I invite everyone to come out to the Hawaii Geek Meet, and a flying geek is a cool geek. But he immediately made a difference on a day that went from wet and humid to hot and humid. He showed up early and helped everyone that he could set up, and stayed late and helped everyone he could pack up.

The whole time, he practically glowed with his love of flight and shared it with everyone he met.

He met my wife Jen. He invited her to fly. A two-year breast cancer survivor, she was eager to check something off her bucket list, and said yes.

Today, Jen, our 17-year-old daughter Katie, and our 13-year-old son Zac woke up at 4 a.m. to make the early morning drive out to meet Eric at Dillingham Airfield. And our incredible morning is summed up in the video above, which I was so eager to cut together that I borrowed Eric’s GoPro memory cards before he could figure out how to say no.

Thanks, Eric!

While ten minutes of online HD video hardly compares to the real thing, I hope you’ll see how special the experience can be. I’ve also posted a lot of photos to this album on Flickr:

If you want to read about it, check out Jen’s review on Yelp (her first!). I also posted my proud bystander’s review on Yelp. You can also watch the unedited GoPro clips from Jen’s flight here on YouTube.

1 Response

  1. I feel so fortunate to have gone hang gliding on Oahu while I was in Honolulu, Hawaii. I’ve never been in an ultralight on Oahu before so I wasn’t sure what to expect but Eric Nakamoto made me feel comfortable from start to finish. His calm demeanor, dedication to safety and laser sharp focus on creating a memorable experience for his student made it a day I will never forget. I whole-heartedly recommend Eric and wouldn’t hesitate to return again and again! Awesome day!

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