tr?id=790146684351692&ev=PageView&noscript=1 ZANIER Gloves – high quality gloves and accessories for outdoor sports - Tracks in the snow

Tracks in the snow

Daniel Kofler has been passionate about photography, filming and flying since childhood. The 44-year-old is an enthusiastic extreme sportsman from East Tyrol, whereby flying – paragliding, speedriding and speedflying – is his absolute greatest passion. Daniel is a speedflying and speedriding pioneer and part of the development team at "SWING Flugsportgeräte".

Zanier has also developed a heated glove specially tapered for flying, the Aviator.GTX, in cooperation with Daniel. The 44-year-old is the head of two companies: an online strategy company and a tandem flight company, where he works exclusively with state-certified tandem pilots from the region with years of flying experience.

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What actually is speedriding/speedflying?

The extreme sports of speedriding and speedflying are basically similar. Speedriding is a form of paragliding that combines flying and skiing in an impressive way. Speedriding, also known as skigliding or skiflying, is therefore only practised in winter. The paraglider pilot flies over a slope very close to the ground and repeatedly makes turns in the snow on skis. Speedflying is basically the same without skis and can therefore be done in summer and winter.

 

The French paragliding instructor François Bon is considered to be the founder of speedriding. He first made the new sport known in his home country in the winter of 2006, and then later throughout Europe. Special speedflying paragliders came onto the market shortly after Bon's speedflying promotion tour. There are some differences In contrast to normal paragliders – speedriding gliders are much smaller and more dynamic and therefore have more speed.

Every year, the world's best paraglider acrobats meet in Les Arcs, one of the pioneering resorts for speedflying, for the Speedflying Pro Event – a parallel slalom and big mountain contest. Daniel Kofler has also attended this elite meet.

A passion with risk

As indescribable and boundless as the feeling may be to make fresh tracks in untouched snow and fly through impressive rock faces – the smallest mistake can cost you your life. It is therefore not without reason that a paragliding licence in the form of a pilot's license is required to practice this sport legally in Austria. Special training is also recommended here.

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8 questions for Daniel Kofler

We met the likeable East Tyrolean and asked him a few questions about his passion:

How long have you been doing speedriding/speedgliding?

"Since the 2005/2006 winter season."

 What are the best spots for you for speedriding and speedgliding?

"One of the greatest adventures were several first ascents in Afghanistan, among others from the famous Buddha statues in Bamiyan. Speedflying trips to Kyrgyzstan, New Zealand and of course France were also highlights. Nevertheless, our beautiful Tyrol offers some of the most stunning lines in the Alps."

Do you have specially marked routes or do you choose your own tracks?

"There are of course hotspots, many of them in France. But I like to find new lines with new challenges."

 What excites you most about it?

"Speedflying in particular comes closest to the flying you dream of. Flying completely free, close to the ground along the terrain's contour with barrel rolls and loops is like meditating."

Have you ever been afraid?

"Fear is one of the most important indicators to minimise the risk. Fear tells me something's wrong."

What training courses have you generally completed in flying – what are they called?

"I started paragliding in 1999 and have practised the sport very intensively right from the start. In addition to continuous training and completing all training levels, I then obtained the paragliding tandem licence and dedicated myself to the development of speed gliders and the sport."

How long does it take to prepare for these challenging sports?

"Like every sport, and especially in extreme flying, experience, training and the right mindset are essential for survival. This sport is nothing for adrenaline junkies and people who like cutting corners."

What is the highest speed you have ever reached?

"Speeds around 100 km/h are normal but I've measured close to 150 km/h."

The interview with the East Tyrolean extreme sportsman leaves no doubt that flying will remain his greatest passion despite the high risk. Turning your hobby into a job – Daniel Kofler has undoubtedly succeeded in this.

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Warm hands in freezing heights - AVIATOR.GTX

 

No matter if in freezing heights, when paragliding or on the mountain, the AVIATOR.GTX gloves keep the hands warm in the coldest conditions.

The ZANIER Heat Technology is based on highly developed textile heat elements and a unique electronic control system.The robust lithium ion batteries which weigh just 60 g provide heat at three different levels for up to 10 hours. They are concealed in the extra long cuff and you can hardly feel them. The gloves’ heating system is easy to operate with a single switch on the white battery. The flame shaped LED light shows the chosen heating level (yellow, orange, red) and shines through the transparent upper material. The supplied USB charger unit recharges the batteries overnight.

Straps and Velcro fasteners were deliberately not used making them ideal for flying at extreme heights. The PrimaLoft® insulation incorporated into the AVIATOR.GTX, the GORE-TEX membrane and the moisture-regulating BREATH lining also protect against the rain and wind. Including Leash and TOUCH function.