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Inspo

Inspiration Point, Uintah Nat'l Forest

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Provo, Utah

Revised 01 Feb 2024

Location

N40º 18' 4.64" W111º 37' 32.94"

40.3013, -111.6258

Elev 6667' / 2032m

Ratings & Skills

USHPA P3 / H3 (H2/P2 w/instr)
High Altitude, Foot Launch
Restricted Landing Field

Radio Comm

Primary . . . . . . . .  447.800

Alternate . . . . . . . . 447-8.25

Emergency . . . . . . 146.560

Access

2WD passenger vehicle accessible on a paved public road. Bottom gate closed mid-Nov to late Mar, hike & fly only when gate is closed.

Known Hazards

Midday thermic turbulence. Rotors common behind launch. Overflies dense suburban neighborhoods, limited bailout LZ's. Not suitable for mini-wings.

Site Sensitivites

Launch site is a popular public attraction on National Forest land. School LZ not available during normal school hours. Church LZ not available on Sundays. Failure to observe these restrictions will result in loss of LZ access and closure of site.

Attention All Users: Inspo is a challenging, high-altitude mountain-thermal site. No pilot should fly at this site who is not a current USHPA and UHGPGA member holding the minimum USHPA ratings and skills indicated. Visiting and first-time users should obtain a detailed in-person pre-flight briefing from a local UHGPGA member-pilot with recent flying experience at this site. This briefing should take place at the launch site on the day of the flight. Pilots should also familiarize themselves with the known hazards and site sensitivities described in this guide. As pilot-in-command, you alone are responsible for assessing your fitness for flight, the airworthiness of your glider and equipment, the suitability of the current conditions for launch and recovery, and for continuously monitoring glider position and performance to ensure a safe landing at an approved landing zone. If in doubt, do not launch.

Road Conditions

The road is paved and well-maintained all the way to the launch site. During snow season, the Forest Service closes the road to motor vehicles at a gate just past the rifle range turnoff. Pilots wishing to fly when the road is closed can leave a vehicle in the parking lot east of the gate and hike the remaining 3 miles (!) to launch.

The Setup

At the Squaw Peak Overlook, the setup area is below the low stone wall bordering the parking lot. The grassy quarter-acre hillside affords plenty of room to set up and launch several gliders. The overlook is a popular tourist attraction, and crowds tend to gather at precisely the time pilots want to fly—late afternoons and evenings before the glass-off. During preflight activities, politely ask onlookers to remain behind the stone wall. (However, UHGPGA has no authority to restrict anyone's movements at Inspo.)

Inspo is a P3/H3 site, P2/H2 with an instructor. A west wind works best. Midday valley heating produces cyclic thermic turbulence, and rotors behind the launch are common.

The LZs are clearly visible 1500 feet below and between 1.3 nd 1.8 miles to the west and southwest, respectively. A 75-foot-tall line of transmission wires and towers is across your flight path one mile west of launch. Reaching either LZ requires overflight of dense suburban neighborhoods. The high minimum glide ratio required to safely reach the closest LZ, combined with the lack of safe bailout LZs, makes this site unsuitable for mini-wings. Note: the former Park LZ south of 3950 North is under renovation and unavailable for safe approaches and landings.

Do not launch in suspected zero-lift conditions. Once airborne, search for lift and gain altitude while still in the immediate launch area before committing to an LZ. High-performance hang gliders have found it difficult to reach the Church LZ on a sled run.

2024 Inspo GE Launch Detail.webp
The Landing Zones

There are two landing zones: an elementary school playground (recommended for paragliders) and a church-owned athletic field (recommended for hang gliders).

The School LZ: Despite being closest to launch, the School LZ is perhaps best thought of as a bailout option for pilots failing to gain altitude once leaving the launch area. With a small footprint, significant hazards on its perimeter, and a plethora of surface obstacles dotting the field, landing at the School LZ requires careful planning and skilled execution. Hang gliders should avoid the School LZ altogether.

The playground is lined on its north and south sides with tall deciduous trees. Its eastern boundary (closest to launch) is at the bottom of a steep hillside and crossed by 50-foot-tall wires. Fixed soccer goal posts and baseball backstops are present. The field itself is generally level, well-drained and firm. But on landing approach, you will note that what looks like a single level field from the air is actually two terraced surfaces with steep slopes between each terrace.

Carefully scout this LZ before proceeding to launch. Visualize a downwind approach from the west. Anticipate rotors from the school structure. Plan accordingly.

Do not launch if your flight plan depends on the use of the School LZ during normal school hours.

Use of this LZ during school hours (Mon-Fri 8am to 3pm) will result in loss of access, and without this LZ, Inspo will not be a safe launch site for paragliders. Expect children to be present even outside of school hours. Use a spotter or retrieve driver to help clear the field of bystanders prior to your approach and landing.

2024 Inspo School LZ Detail.webp

The Church LZ: The 6-acre athletic field west of the Latter-day Saint chapel is the farthest LZ from launch. With no permanent obstructions and a clear, wire-free approach from the west, this is the preferred LZ for hang gliders. However, similar to the School LZ, most pilots launching from Inspo do not target this LZ as their primary destination; the LZ is used more often as a bailout option. A sled run in a recreational hang glider from Inspo Launch to this LZ would require favorable winds and flawless execution.

 

Do not use the Church LZ on Sundays. After landing, promptly disassemble or fold and remove your glider. The pavilion is not for use without prior authorization.

 

Both LZs are in noise- and traffic-sensitive neighborhoods. Our hosts are the Provo City School District and the local wards of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. Your professional and courteous conduct while visiting their premises is appreciated.

2024 Inspo Church LZ Detail.webp
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