Last revised: March 4, 2023
Plymouth or ‘Peaked Cliff’ is an NEPHC flying site that is environmentally and legally very sensitive. It is located in the Town of Bourne. The launch is located on Town Conservation land, and landing area is located on National Seashore. Through careful negotiation, NEPHC has been allowed use of the launch, the landing area and the beach access stairs to return from the beach. NEPHC club members, have the “privilege” to fly there.
We must follow both NEPHC, USHPA, Legal requirements and Town of Bourne environmental rules to keep this privilege. If you do not feel up to following these rather stringent requirements, do not fly there. We as a club are currently in a lawsuit with an unhappy landowner to the North of launch. Our good behavior and following the rules to the letter of the Court Order allow limited flying at Plymouth.
Unfortunately, we are not currently welcome visiting pilots to fly Plymouth. NEPHC members must have signed an acknowledgement and affidavit that they understand and will comply with the operating limitations. You must then meet a NEPHC site manager, have your wing photographed on the ground and carry a GPS vario or smartphone app that records the entire flight position data, then send that file to the site manager EACH FLYING DAY. Violating those rules could greatly affect the above-mentioned lawsuit, result in a possible fine and set a bad legal precedent for the USHPA members nationally.
- Flight Type: Coastal, ridge soaring
- Required: valid current USHPA and NEPHC memberships
- USHPA Rating Requirement: H3/P3
- Flying restrictions: Plover nesting may restrict flying, if unsure, email firstname.lastname@example.org to check before flying
- Wind direction: ENE (Ideal: 060-080 degrees, OK: 040-90)
- Wind speed (PG):
- 10 mph minimum
- 15 mph ideal
- 18 mph maximum – do not launch a standard sized paraglider in wind exceeding 15 mph unless you are certain you have the skills and your glider can penetrate. Mini wing operating limitations at the pilot’s discretion.
- +2 mph maximum gusting
- Wind speed (PG mini-wing):
- 14 mph minimum
- 18 mph ideal
- 20 mph maximum – do not launch a standard sized paraglider in wind exceeding 20 mph unless you are certain you have the skills and your glider can penetrate. Mini wing operating limitations at the pilot’s discretion.
- +2 mph maximum gusting
- Wind speed (HG):
- 10 mph minimum
- 15 mph ideal
- 20-25 mph maximum – depends on experience and skill of the pilot
- +5 mph maximum gusting
- Launch: Cliff launch, facing ENE. Elevation: 75 ft. (25m)
Stay on the sand path from the layout area behind launch and avoid trampling the dune grass to the right of launch and the erosion areas near the launch. Please politely ask any spectators to stand at least 30ft. away (especially downwind) and clear of the launch as this endangers not only them, but you too!
- Airspace: There is an airport approximately 2.5 miles away so there are occasional low flying aircraft in the area.
- Hazards: Rotor and turbulence behind the ridge. High tide can reduce the beach LZ to a narrow strip, tree limbs near the top of the ridge, large rocks on the beach, possibility of blowing back behind the ridge in strong winds, water landing and associated drowning risks. In strong crosswinds, turbulence near the slope.
- Landing zones:
- PG/HG: Beach area near the South staircase. Top-landing at launch is possible for experienced pilots in Paragliders.
- Min Req Glide Ratio: 1.7
- Vehicle Access: NONE, AND DON’T EVEN THINK OF IT!! See notes on parking below. Hike to launch and it is preferred that you use the trail and not the neighborhood roads.
Rules and Regulations
- NEVER WALK OR CLIMB ON THE DUNES.
- DO NOT LAND AT THE GOLF COURSE.
- RESPECT THE SENSITIVE LANDOWNER NO-FLY ZONE.
- Do not fly anywhere near the house directly left (North) of launch, and do not even come close to breaching the 30ft buffer zone around this property that has been stipulated in an on-going court case.
- When flying to soar the North end, go out over the water to pass that property. In a Southerly crosswind, turn early to avoid being blown over the house. See image below.
- First-time pilots must get a site introduction from a qualified NEPHC member.
- To ensure that all pilots are fully aware of changes to the rules and restrictions regarding the site, any pilot that has not flown this site since September 1, 2021 also must get a site introduction from a qualified NEPHC member.
- Strong kiting skills and ability to launch in strong wind (~15 mph) required when soarable.
- Keep a respectful safe maneuvering distance from the cliffside houses to the South of launch.
- NO PARKING NEAR LAUNCH! See Parking section below.
- Land only on the beach or, in good conditions, top landing. Do not attempt first top landings unless light ENE conditions.
- Access to/from the beach is via stairs SOUTH OF LAUNCH. See the image on this page.
- Remember, we are guests of the Town of Bourne and the local community and fly here because of their generosity!
- Always follow USHPA Safety guidelines.
- Never fly alone.
- Always have your speed system connected.
- No Aerobatics, stay clear of the launch area when others are trying to launch.
- Always carry a hook knife and practice getting out of your harness and finding your hook knife. An accidental water landing can be extremely dangerous.
- Check the Tidal forecast as well as monitoring Wind forecast. As the site faces North East, soarable conditions can be associated with storm events. Be aware of launching into building conditions.
- Use a GPS equipped variometer to monitor your ground speed into the wind.
- Be aware of the possibility that the beach landing area can be greatly reduced by high tides.
- Watch out for the large rocks, stakes, volleyball nets and the public on the beach.
- Keep well away from anyone on the beach, especially when landing.
Directions and parking
- Contact your NEPHC Mentor for guidance on parking and hiking to launch.
- Park only at State Rd parking area (41.803184, -70.545908). See the image on this page.