Mountain Wave Flying

Come Fly the Sugarbush Mountain Wave!!

One of the many things that makes the Warren-Sugarbush Airport special is the famous Sugarbush Mountain Wave, which has been drawing glider pilots to the Mad River Valley since the late 1950’s. Soaring in the mountain wave is an incredible experience that you will never forget. While it may be bumpy getting into the wave (due to turbulence), once you are in it, the air is glassy smooth. On strong wave days, you will climb like you are in an elevator, and may achieve altitudes above 10,000 feet (which is pretty incredible considering you don’t have an engine!). The views from heights like that are unforgettable. Our experienced instructors have flown many hours in the Sugarbush Wave and can help you learn or enhance your rotor and wave flying skills. In addition, our tow pilots have the critical local knowledge of how to get you into the wave in ways that minimize the amount of time spent in the rotor.

While mountain wave can form at any time of the year, weather conditions tend to be most conducive to wave formation during the late fall (late September through October). During the fall wave season, we offer:

  • Free camping at the airfield, with 24/7 access to bathrooms and showers.
  • Tow planes operating every day.
  • No fees for glider tie-downs or trailers.
  • Access to our rental fleet of four two-place and one single-place glider.
  • Daily 9:00am weather briefing.
  • Mentoring by local pilots.
  • Free WiFi.

Accommodations are also available near the airfield. See www.madrivervalley.com for details!

When the folks from York Soaring (near Toronto) visited in the October 2008, they made this video. It’s well made and worth a look!

 Also - here are two articles about the famous Sugarbush wave to whet your appetite:

The Sugarbush Wave - Alan Bemis

Flying the Sugarbush Wave - Dave Ellis

mountain wave 1