Breach of the peace

The peace on top of Robinson in the Lake District was shattered yesterday by the sudden appearance of a helicopter which rose into view yards in front of us while I was in a Summit to Summit call with G4OOE/P who was on Blencathra . It dropped off a couple of base jumpers , one in Red Bull gear and a lot of camera gear on his helmet . Making a film according to a couple of walkers who were there also.

Richard M7MGO


Exciting stuff - as long as your antenna/mast stayed up!
I think they may be para-gliders rather than base jumpers.


I had an ultralight fly so close to my mast that it blew it over on Black Butte W6/ND-311

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. . .and yet you hiked all the way up there. Perhaps helicopter rides are in your future! Seems too easy, though. . .

73, Jim KK0U

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Same chumps who landed close to me in the cloud on Robinson the other day. The down wash knocked a rock the size of a football off the cairn just missing my handheld. They couldn’t have seen me, not a chance. They’re paragliders btw, probably doing some stuff for the next installment of some Tom Cruise film. He was there last year doing something similar.

Just to be a miserable sod I’ve emailed the Ops at GB helicopters to ask what their plans are. An HF antenna might cause a bit of bother.

Incidentally Robinson is very close to the site where Mark Weir (Honister slate mine) crashed his gazelle in low visibility and poor weather in 2011.


While Gerald G4OIG and I activated Cadair Idris - Penygadair GW/NW-009 back in December 2008 a helicopter landed close to the summit. Posh looking bird (can you say that these days?) jumped out with a very expensive looking camera, took two pics jumped back in and away.

Zero consideration for the considerable number of walkers in the area.

Is that even legal?

Speaking as an ex-PPL I think I’d be inclined to send that photo of the helicopter to the CAA and tell them the pilot was operating dangerously close to members of the public in an area where people are known to be walking.

Redbull unfortunately have a bad reputation for doing dangerous stunts - often putting members of the public in danger.

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The answer is “It depends”. The law says that an aircraft may not approach any structure or people closer than 500’ except for the purposes of landing. A landing at an airport is implied. However exceptions are granted for some things, pipeline survey etc. So they might have received permission, but I’m betting not.

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The response back from them was that they have full permission from the land owner and that if I wanted to he ops team would phone me before hand. I’d assumed that. Oh and the pilot saw me (still no chance as I was sat behind a cairn - I asked how many fingers I was holding up).

Bottom line is that they’ll be around until the 6th August in Buttermere. No other info I’m afraid.

Don’t know anyone in the CAA but sent it to a mate in the AAIB (just in case!)

Yeah they did paraglide Alex , there was no freefall or wingsuits involved , but their trajectory and speed of descent after the canopies filled was quite rapid . I watched them perform the same ops on High Stile opposite a while before.
I have to admit , I’ve always fancied a go at paragliding !

Can I contrast the difference with Her Majesty’s Royal Navy Rescue pilots and crew?

August 2007 I was on top of Stob Binnein GM/SS-002 and a Sea King was buzzing around below but deafening me. Then the crew saw I had a aerial and mast deployed. They came into land and saw the rotor wash was causing me problems so flew well clear and lowered a guy on the winch. He wandered over and wanted to know if there was a hill race on. He needed to know because if there was they would return to base to refuel so they were ready if need for evacuations. They were out practising rescue moves and didn’t want to get a call when on bingo fuel. I told them no and we talked about SOTA. Then the guy said he was off and they would go and practice elsewhere so they didn’t disturb me.

That was 15 years back and I’m still impressed with how they were doing something important and I was doing a hobby but they didn’t want to spoil my hobby activities and wanted to be ready “in case”. Definitely they had the “right stuff”.


There was a sign in one of the hangars I used to work in. I can’t remember exactly what it said, but to paraphrase it…

Aviation should not be dangerous, but what you do can make it dangerous.

They were really referring to work manship and housekeeping but it’s pretty true regardless of the situation. There was another sign painted on a wall that had faded, it said ‘No smoking in the dope shed’… Nothing to do with the 60’s apparently.



Do it, its a lot of fun. but get some training, I did a course with a group based in Lamberis Snowdonia a number of years ago, there is quite a lot to learn in order to do it safely, but well worth the effort, but we were never spoilt with helicopter rides to the summits, we had to hump our own shute to the top each time.

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Off Topic One of my most memorable experiences was a rescue team exercise. Being picked up on a moonlit night from Cow Green Reservoir in an RAF Sea King was stunning. They approached with few lights(!) and turned the spotlight on when about 20m up. We were then airlifted about 5 miles to the top of Meldon Fell which had about 6 ins of hard snow on the top, and with the moonlight it was possible to read the map without a torch! It is the only time that I have ever managed 6km/hr across what is normally a bog - and that was with a stretcher being towed! It was also quite (!) exciting being flown with the winch door open sideways over Cow Green dam and down Cauldron Snout.

On a more serious note the RAF were very professional, on a real shout they worked brilliantly with the team and everything was checked and re-checked - nothing left to chance. I just hope 1) I never need to use the service as a customer and 2) our new free market solution is as good as the RAF.

(PS I thought this topic was going to be a complaint about that barking dog during an activation…)


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It is, well in Scotland at least. Bristows have just been re-awarded the contract for SAR and the rescue teams are delighted. They also plan to put an additional helicopter on for the Lochaber area, as Ben Nevis rescues can be a full time occupation.


Those photos made me think. When the air ambulance lands at the helipad by Aston University in Brum the police clear pedestrians to outside a 100m perimeter, yet that helicopter landed casually on a summit that I have never seen deserted. Either the police in Brum are over cautious or that pilot was over casual!

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A woman was killed at Derriford hospital in Plymouth recently by the downwash from a helecopter landing with a casualty. :frowning:

The helecopter G-TVGB is used for aerial film work I think.

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Two years ago I activated Moel Eilio GW/NW-022 with my beach shelter & 6m pole erected. A police helicopter (I think) passing by did a circle around me for a good look & then left. I was tempted to do a two-fingered salute, but thought better of it…

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I don’t think it’s one of the recognized ground arm signals to helicopters.

You could be right, Andy, I can think of 1 or 2 others that fit into this category!