The first parachute was invented when Jack, tumbling haplessly from his titanium beanstalk, used a purloined pair of giant underpants to steady his fall. Glide to earth safely with today's Groupon: for $125, you get a powered parachute lesson from Arizona Powerchutes in Cave Creek (a $289 value).
Arizona Powerchutes lends sky-aspiring patrons rainbow-colored wings that lift their bodies into the air in engine-powered carts for breathtaking views of the landscape below. FAA-certified flight instructor Randy Long plays host to fledgling cloud-surfers, applying more than 2,000 hours of logged flight time to supervising aerialists as they achieve epic heights in parachute-bannered crafts. Students can fly at their choice of high or low altitudes above the sunlit Sonoran Desert, learning to maneuver their aircraft and veer away from territorial weather balloons with foot-controlled steering bars. From aerial vantage points, flyers may catch glimpses of exotic plants and wildlife going about their usual business, such as sunset-striped gila monsters on the prowl or desert bighorns hanging their laundry on clothing lines. Upon returning to terra firma at the end of the 30-minute adventure, pupils receive a 1st flight certificate and a pilot’s log book that can be used toward earning an FFA Sport Pilot’s license.
Those who prefer sightseeing instead of manning the controls can let Randy navigate while they relax and enjoy the ride. With a constant speed of 26 mph, engine-powered parachutes surpass dawdling supermen and wind-lofted chutes while maintaining superior safety records for worry-free excursions.
Randy Long entered the working world as a travel agent, a vocation that whet his appetite for globetrotting, adventure, and haggling with airlines. When he became a father and husband, he passed a passion for thrill seeking on to his family, and their recent escapades include scuba diving in Barbados and dog sledding in Alaska. It was this thirst for exploration and a love of aviation that drove Randy to become an FAA-certified powered-parachute instructor and found Arizona Powerchutes.
Powered parachutes are comprised of two-seater, wheeled carts that float 20 feet beneath 40-foot parachutes. At sunrise—or sunset during the cooler months—Randy and a passenger climb aboard the cart, and Randy hits the throttle, gathering speed for about 100 feet before the parachute fully inflates and hoists the cart into the air. Randy adjusts the altitude to his patron's comfort level and steers crafts over the exotic plants and mountain silhouettes of the Sonoran Desert, averaging a speed of 26 miles per hour. After journeys, powered parachutes float to land safely, as they are inspected by the pilot prior to each flight and by an FAA-approved facility after every 100 hours of operation.
31414 N Cave Creek Rd.
Cave Creek, Arizona 85351