. This location is known primarily for tandem flights, but is also of considerable interest for solo flights.
- Mid-December – mid-February: flights down from the top of Mount Kudebi.
- The second half of February – March: cross-country flights are possible. Within the boundaries of Gudauri resort the thermals are weak – up to +3. Outside the boundaries, especially lower down where there are a lot of forests, the thermals are stronger, – reaching up to +9. This is an ideal time for safe flights over small distance of 50–80 km. Longer flights are possible for experienced pilots.
- April: for experienced and ambitious pilots only. At this time, conditions can be both high and soft but also very strong and severe. This period is characterized by rapid overdevelopment, leading to snowfall. It is not recommended for beginners and inexperienced pilots to fly at this time.
- May – June: there is little summer weather. During this period there are strong winds, rain and thunderstorms. Good weather can occur, but conditions are predominantly non-flying.
- July – August – September: at this time the weather is more stable. However, due to the specific nature of the location, a high cloud base (3000+ meters) rarely occurs. Suitable for competent pilots with sufficient experience of flying in the Big Mountains and landing at sites with limited area.
- October – November: the cloud base rarely rises very high. This period is not suitable for longer flights, only for flights not far from the start. The weather is extremely changeable, there may be very few flight days.
- GPS – 42°30’04.82″N 44°27’35.17″E
- Height above sea level – 2400m.
- Vertical distance – 150m.
- How to get there – 4WD jeep with high ground clearance
- Terrain – grass
- Quantity of gliders – 1-2
The safest and proven start place. In good weather the wind always blows from the east. After the start, you are immediately in thermals and you can ascend the cliffs up to 3000 m. The thermals at this location are quite soft, good soaring conditions without turbulence. The start only works in summer and autumn (in winter and spring it is covered with snow).
- GPS – 42°29’25.09″N 44°27’45.18″E
- Height above sea level – 2200m.
- Vertical distance – 700m. (canyon).
- How to get there — any car.
- Terrain – grass, large field
- Quantity of gliders — 20+
This is the favorite start place for tandems. Ideal for quick starts with landing back at the start. Extremely dangerous place to fly, since below the start there are more than 400 meters of vertical black cliffs. The thermals are sharp, uneven and narrow. It is recommended to fly more than 100 meters above the start. Lower flights often lead to wing collapse, even for tandems. In the event of a flight down the gorge, there is a landing at the bottom on the road (this can be complicated by valley winds). The start only works in summer and autumn. In winter and spring it is covered with snow.
- GPS – 42°29’48.74″N 44°30’33.62″E
- Height above sea level – 3000m.
- Vertical distance – 1000+m.
- How to get there — ski lift.
- Terrain — snow
- Quantity of gliders — 5+
This start place is ideal in every respect for starts in winter and spring. Very suitable for setting out on longer flights in March-April. The thermals in this location are soft due to the large amount of snow. In summer and autumn the start is not used.
In winter and spring, the standard landing point is at the bottom of the second line of the chairlift. There is also a landing point beneath the cable car station that can be used. If the weather is unfavorable, you can land at the bottom of the Aragvi canyon on the road leading to the reservoir.
In the summer and autumn periods, the standard landing point is at the start or down the Aragvi canyon on the road.
The standard landing point for the Bidar start is the area below the start (this is the safest place).
Gudauri is a ski resort with a wide choice of accommodation. Most of them can be found on booking.com.