An “incredibly full leisure activity”

An "incredibly full leisure activity"

So now the 52-year-old got his license at the age of 17. “I first got my driver’s license three weeks later, but it didn’t interest me at all,” he recalls.


He is still interested in aviation today, and he pursues his hobby with the Trustein Aviation Group. The association, which was founded in 1959 by twelve people from Traunstein under the name Alpine Flaggergruppe, has about 100 members. About half of the members are active pilots who use gliders, four-seat motorized aircraft or motorized gliders parked at airfields in Utterwossen – no motorized aircraft are allowed to land there – and Schötberg (Kienberg).

The championship is about the distance

Some pilots of the flying group also participate in the championship. These are conducted decentralized, so the pilots start each from their home locations. At the German Championships in Distance Gliding (DMST) – just to put it on – it is assessed how far the respective pilot travels from his aircraft. The flight is recorded via a GPS receiver and can be read after landing. The pilot can then report his flight through an online portal. A nationwide ranking list is constructed from these reported routes.

There is also a competition in which glider pilots from all over the world can compare themselves: Online Competition (OLC) is a decentralized popular sports competition that has existed since 1999. After landing, participants also upload their flight data to the OLC website, where flights are included in national or international ratings – for example the fastest or fastest flight.

The glider pilots of Fliegergruppe Traunstein teamed up with the pilots of other clubs located in Unterwössen to form a reporting community as Alpenflugzentrum Unterwössen as a “small club to further advance the rankings in international competition” Have joined forces to appear. President of Fliegergruppe, Marco Stadter explained. Pilots at the Alpine Flight Center have flown with the most OLC points worldwide in recent years. The club happily stated, “Alpine Flight Center is one of the clubs with the most cross-country flight kilometers in DMST.”

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The flying group not only compares well with national and international competition, there are also many competitions within the Alpine Flight Center, such as the Walter Weber Cup in honor of a long-term member.

Before the pilots can participate in the competitions, however, they must undergo intensive training. Fliegergruppe Traunstein offers interested parties the opportunity to fly, but the union itself does not train budding pilots. This training is done by the German Alpine Gliding School Antrovsen. The minimum age for a glider license is 14 years.

“The license is the authorization to fly an airplane,” Andreas Trainer says. “And an invitation to continue to educate ourselves at the same time. After all, new rules, new equipment and airplanes always change. “

The 52-year-old still remembers how he used a map, compass and clock to navigate his first flights from a 1942 aircraft. “But it’s becoming more and more important to navigate properly. It’s just good if GPS shows you a restricted area and warns you before you enter a protected area horizontally or vertically.« Andreas The trainer certainly appreciates the new technology. “In fact, you are an idiot if you do not use this facility and security.”

Ultimately, the safety of pilots comes first. Andreas Trainer likes to compare a ski tour or flight with a hike: “There are weather or snow conditions that make it disappointing from the start,” he knows. “But there is also an intermediate sector, it can work there. As on a mountain, you have to change your tour accordingly, go to a different mountain or just do half the tour. “Because one thing is clear for Andreas the trainer:” Courageous are pilots and older pilots. “

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The 52-year-old also clarifies that “this is not any rocket science”: “You have to think about it.” Then flying is an “incredibly full leisure activity” – and certainly for women as well: “They can do it even better, but unfortunately we have very few female members.”

According to Andreas Trainer, the most important requirement for membership is a »certain reliability. You also have to have a little fun by taking care of the equipment and not being in the air. «In addition, team spirit is important in the club – and not just when working together: take-off with a glider is important alone is hardly possible and if the pilots don’t make it back to Unterovson, they will have to make it to other clubs. Members would have to rely on them, who would have to pick them up with a trailer in the event of a landing outside the airspace. The aircraft was then disembarked and taken to Unnavassen.

Andreas Trainer does not feel that this includes not only regular flights, but also examinations by flight therapists for recreational pilots. “They are not looking for astronauts,” he explains and laughs. Fliegergruppe’s former treasurer understands the gliding charm: “You can enjoy the peace and calm of flight. There is something about this gliding and seeing the world from above.”

Nevertheless, he is mainly on the road with a motor machine – a Cessna 182Q. “This is nothing for purists, but you can also dare to venture beyond the airspace.” After all, the range is about 400 kilometers. “It makes it easy to reach all over Europe or Morocco,” says Andreas Trainer. Glider pilots have not yet been found, but in 2001 there was also the first 1000-kilometer glider flight from Unterwössen.

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Andreas Trainer likes to use the possibilities of powered airplanes – whether for in-laws’ trips or for vacations and walks. The 52-year-old Tempelhof closed in 2008 before spending a day in Berlin and flying back in the evening. He has already taken a day trip to Hamburg by plane. He also specifically remembers “each flight to Venice or England”: “After all, you have no chance of landing on the canvas for 20 minutes.” Recreational pilots have also flown to Croatia, Norway or Hungary. And when the Heidenhain employees were in the USA for work, they used the time to fly to the United States and Canada.

You have “time to see” on the plane

“It’s good that you have time to watch,” he explains. “You have to focus separately while driving a car while flying – you can’t really see the landscape.”

However, the wholesale and foreign trade trader does not have to fly to be inspired by that scenario: he is always thrilled to see the Chiamsi, Achendelta or the region’s mountains from above.

For Andreas Trainer, however, it is not just the landscape beneath him that creates special attraction, but also technology: “It’s fun to move around in three-dimensional space, to master technology and air spaces,” The pilot explains. “You can get down quickly in an emergency, but you can’t just stop or pull.” This is why, for her, “healthy confidence” is part of the flight – “but not too much and not too little”.


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