Ewa Wisnierska is one lucky paraglider, readers. Learn more about her harrowing, miraculous shave with certain death in the article linked here:
When This Paraglider Flew Right Into A Huge Storm The Unthinkable Happened
JUL 23, 2018
German paraglider Ewa Wisnierska found herself standing with 200 fellow paragliders on the brink of Mount Borah in New South Wales, Australia. They were about to launch off the mountain when they received an unexpected warning.
Some ominous storm clouds had been spotted to the north, and as the day progressed, thunderstorm warnings got more and more severe. The paragliders had been warned, and Ewa set her GPS and tracking log. At first glance, the approaching storm didn’t look too dangerous. She prepared to take off, not expecting what would soon unfold.
Safely strapped into her glider, Ewa Wisnierska took a starting run and launched herself into the clouds. On the ground, the rest of the German team followed in a van to track her progress, checking in with the paraglider via radio from time to time.
Calm Before The Storm
The first part of Ewa’s sky-high journey was calm. She followed the Northern facing mountain ridge from Mount Borah for 12 miles before entering the skies over the vast savanna. That’s when things took a turn for the worse.
Thunderstorm Clouds Appeared
As Ewa Wisnierska’s GPS and tracking log ticked on, tracking her progress through the skies, two thunderstorm clouds appeared before her, one larger than the other. She and her teammates had taken off roughly an hour after the other paragliders, were they in danger?
Into The Darkness
Three paragliders were directly en route towards the billowing storm clouds: Ewa, an Austrian friend of hers, and a professional Chinese paraglider – an expert in his field with over a decade of experience. The three of them were fairly confident that they could withstand the menacing clouds. But now they were isolated.
Many other paragliders behind and around Ewa Wisnierska and her two colleagues were put off by the clouds and made their way back to land. Ewa’s friends from the German team landed, urging her to do the same. Up in the sky, Ewa was trying to avoid the dark, brewing clouds. She tried to steer herself around the clouds, that’s when the unthinkable happened.
In a matter of moments, the weather abruptly took a turn. The smaller cloud was suddenly engulfed and swallowed by the larger one, merging into a tremendous cumulonimbus cloud looming Ewa. Ewa was flying directly into its center. She struggled to veer around the cloud to avoid the pull of the updraft. But as Ewa’s Austrian friend tried to steer away from the storm, he watched her disappear. In a mere moment, she was sucked up into the eye of the storm.