Learn to Fly

Learn to Fly!

Gliders Lined Up Ready for Launch and Readying for Launch

Interested? Great!        Intimidated? Don’t be!

You can do it, and we’re here to help!

Gliding is one of the most accessible forms of aviation. A keen interest, some dedication, and a modest investment are all that’s required to earn a license to explore the sky and enjoy a lifetime of fulfillment. You can soar like an eagle!

For those interested, Cu Nim has adopted an ‘Objective Oriented Training’ approach for unlicensed (GPL) members. This approach emphasizes frequent flying to achieve milestones at a safe, and ultimately more cost-effective pace!

Students dedicated to making progress could potentially achieve the following milestones in their first few years of membership:

Year 1
– Pre-season soaring seminar – functional understanding of gliding and gliding operations
– Active flying season – go solo within 30 to 40 flights!
Year 2
– Complete a ground school course which satisfies Transport Canada requirements
– Complete solo flights (20) required for license
– Pass Transport Canada GPL License
Obtain pilot’s license
– Local soaring – ‘Proving Grounds‘ Racetrack
Year 3
– Pre-season FAI Bronze Badge theory
Passenger carrying (take your friends and family)
– Proving Grounds tasks Trainagle 2 (100km), possibly Triangle 3 (150km)
– FAI Bronze, possibly FAI Silver
Year 4
– Full XC permissions
– Competition dual flying exposure
– Complete SAC Instructors course

Special Fees for Unlicensed Members (Dual or Solo Students)

The following package options provide membership fees and a volume of flight opportunities to work toward a flying outcome. The allocated flights must be used by the student, in the current membership year, and all but 3 of the flights will be no longer than 30 minutes. These flights are intended to focus on the air exercise and critical components of the flight – takeoff, aerotow, circuit, and landing.

Values Reflect 2021 RatesBefore JuneJune/JulyAugust +*
Training Materials & Log Book$25$25$25
Membership & Flying Fees**$730$730$440
2000′ Tows ($55 ea)***252015
1000′ Tows ($35 ea)***151010
Package Price$2,655$2,205$1,680
Cost for Training
Flights Beyond :30
Additional Tow Tickets$25 for 1000′
$40 for 2000′
$25 for 1000′
$40 for 2000′
$25 for 1000′
$40 for 2000′
‘Glider Rental’ for Solo
Flights after Aug 1
* – It is unlikely to complete the Year 1 objectives if starting after August
** – Includes basic membership fee ($50) and other service fees applicable for flying members. Flying fees are reduced for youth ($525 less) or family members ($290 less before Aug 1, $240 less after Aug 1)
*** – Flights are non-transferable, must be redeemed this flying season, are generally limited to a 30-minute duration, and are non-refundable unless club circumstances outside of the students control – to obtain the greatest value from this package, fly as often as possible

The more you fly, the better chance you are at achieving a milestone to bring you back for further development. It is our sincere hope that you develop a lifelong love of soaring as we have, and will join us for years to come!

Attention persons under the age of 25 @ March 31 – Plan to submit a SAC Youth Bursary application and receive up to $499 in support from the Soaring Association of Canada!

In order to ensure students buying into this approach have the resources they need to be successful, a limited number of student spaces are available on an annual basis. If you have questions about this package, or are planning to learn to fly in 2021email us now!

Expect costs to decrease with experience as flight durations increase and the number of tows decreases. With additional experience, no cost flying opportunities present themselves through flying guests or instructing.

For young pilots, learning tends to happen faster (fewer flights to solo) and membership fees are discounted. We’re happy to help you with scholarship and bursary opportunities to make soaring even more affordable!

Not sure if this is for you? Try an introductory flight. If you decide to join within 30 days of your flight we’ll give you a $100 credit.

To understand typical, licensed member fees, you’re welcome to review our 2021 Membership Application for more detail

Early morning starts mean multiple flights per day and faster progress!

Thinking of joining but not sure where to start? Show up at the field to see the operation, talk with some members, and start working on a specific plan for you. To be sure we are operating on a particular day, you may want to ask our intro coordinator at introflight@cunim.org, and/or look for operational updates on our Facebook Page.

Ready to join? Drop by and we can get you signed up and scheduled for instruction. If you pre-arrange through introflight@cunim.org you can be flying and learning on your first day!

What to expect as a student

Expect to be challenged each and every flight! Do you remember learning to drive? Learning a complex video game? Learning a new sport? At first, it seems overwhelming – everything is happening so quickly, there is so much to take in, layer upon layer of new things to discover. Then, as your skills develop, time seems to slow down, and what seemed impossible just a couple of flights ago becomes manageable, then easy.

Right from the first flight, you will be in control of portions of the flight. As you improve, your instructor will have you fly more and more, will challenge you, and will test your decision-making ability. Once flying yourself, there are no breaks. Effective pilots are always thinking ahead – direction, clouds, time of day, nearby airports, wind, etc.

You will make friends with other pilots and students. Gliding is a communal sport, every student has at a minimum an instructor, a wing runner, and a tow pilot, all working together to make the flights happen. The shared interest and experience make for a great community. Besides, it’s hard to complete a flight without a big grin!

Join us today, and start a lifetime of learning to fly!

Learn even more

First solo = solo shower, very refreshing

Power pilot looking for something new?

We have many power pilots – professional and private – who enjoy the diverse challenges and thrills of gliding. As a power pilot, the addition of a glider license will be more rapid. The cost of the endorsement will depend on the number of flights required to satisfy Transport Canada requirements. Satisfying license requirements will generally take around 30 flights.

Individuals with an existing pilot’s license, and who have flown as PIC within the last 5 years will be required to demonstrate flying proficiency through the SAC flying curriculum to reach solo status, and pass a flight test after completing 20 solo take-offs and landings. If grounds school and written exam expectations are satisfied (CARs 421.24).

For those who have been licensed, but have not flown as PIC within the last 5 years (on any license), they will also be required to complete the PSTAR exam to renew currency.

Learn more

Get back to flying for the love of it – 100% Pilot, 0% Auto!

Expectations of Members

Like most gliding clubs around the world, Cu Nim is a non-profit, volunteer-run organization. All members are expected to contribute to the club to keep it operational. This can range from mowing the runways, managing the flying operation, general clean up, instruction or towing. There’s always lots to do, and many opportunities to contribute your professional skills to the betterment of the club.

As students, the primary expectation is that you dedicate your time to learning. Our instructors are motivated by your enthusiasm and effort!

Consider your first solo at Cu Nim, or your first solo in a while!

The foothills transition to the Canadian Rockies to the west of our home base. It’s a beautiful place to fly!