Photo Credits: John Barsness, Shada Luby
|Site Description: Pickle
Butte is a hang gliding and paragliding "staple" site in the Boise area;
it has long been flown for hours of ridge soaring and some great XC
flights have originated here.
|Wind Requirements: Ridge faces NW, and is soarable from West to Northeast wind conditons. Prevalent winds often blow straight in here, making this a fantastic, predictable flying site.||Preferred Rating: P-2 under instruction or with thorough site checkout; or P-3 and above.||Hazards: Thermal activity, rough rocky terrain, semi-cliff launch.||Restrictions: Private land bordering BLM land, some access issues.|
|Driving Directions: Pickle Butte is located Southwest of Nampa, Idaho. Take Highway 45 South of Nampa for several miles until you come to Missouri Avenue. Turn West (right) and travel about 7 miles until the road turns 90 degrees to the North (right). This is the East end of Pickle Butte. Depending on access, you may be able to drive thru the gate or you will see where cars go around it. From here, travel down the rough road to the far NW corner of the Butte. You will find the windsock and gravelled launch area there.||Access: Before flying this site, you need to telephone the owner of the LZ and as I understand it he owns all or part of the launch as well. Owner is Ralph Sevy, home phone; 208-459-4916 cell: 208-870-6303. Ralph wants to know who is flying over his land and you must be USHGA insured. Access to the LZ is on a road through his fields.||Vehicle requirements:
with good clearance will get you to launch. Road is rough and a 4X4 is definitely
preferred. Access to the LZ is via a dirt road thru the fields;
may be wet, muddy. Be sure to close any gates that are that way
when you find them.
|Takeoff & Landing: Nice gravel area to layout wings. Semi-cliff launches (canyon rim but not vertical). LZ is large with some obstructions, fences, etc. but nothing frightening. This site is top landable by skilled pilots but "rotor happens" and top land at your own risk, near the edge or well back.||Approximate GPS Launch coordinates:
Launch Elev: 2850'
|Peter Hammett showing off for the camera, Pickle Butte|
|John Barsness Ridge soaring at Pickle Butte|
|Paul Heffron and John Barsness enjoying some spring air at Pickle Butte. Pickle is an especially good site in the spring months.|
|Kevin Mooney dressed in his hi-altitude garb, launching his Firebird in hopes of a XC flight|
|John Barsness launching his Arcus from the gravel launch pad at Pickle Butte. Looks like some Roundup is in order...|