Monday, 20 September 2010

Paragliding World Cup Super Final - Denizili

Another Epic competition looms in the form of the super final. This is where every former world cup champion and all 'legends' get wild cards along with the top fifteen of each qualifying event during the year. There are three SA pilots attending: Nevil, Russel and I. Russel qualified in Brasil and Nevil got a wild card on account of his world record and I qualified in the US in August. Nevil has been here for a week where he flew in the Russian open finishing second. We will pick his brain when we catch up with him.

The travelling proved to be a little tedious but after 32hours (JHB-DUBAI-IST-DEN) we finally arrived at the grand hotel Sevgi which is in the town of Pamukkale which means "cotton castle" in Turkish and is situated at the base of the mountain which features two launch areas (low + high). The cotton castle is framed by an amphitheater of pure white calcium carbonate precipitated out of the thermal springs over the last 14,000 years at a rate of 1mm per year. The ancient city of Hieropolis was built on top of this 'white castle' which is a Unesco World Heritage site. The calcium deposits harden into the sedimetary rock known as Travertine. Huge open air baths hold the super saturated hot water which gushes out of the rock at around 30degC. The entire complex is lit up at night which accompanied by the exotic sounds of turkish music and nocturnal fauna provided a novel backdrop to our first evening meal of spicy donna kebab and Efes beer.

The pools of Pamukkale

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